Compact Truck Collection: Five Subaru BRATs

Subaru Brats are getting increasingly hard to find; I have a saved-search notification for new listings on Craigslist in my area and sometimes go months at a time without a new one popping up, let alone a decent one worth buying. Maybe that’s because this guy was keeping them all to himself! Thanks to Rocco B. for the tip on this lot of five Brats, which can be found for sale here on Craigslist and is only being offered as a bulk deal. The seller is located in Grand Junction, CO and is asking $4500 for everything.

The seller’s five Brats are all first-gen models and range from 1979-81 model years. They are in varying states of disrepair, with none currently fully functional but the seller indicates that two of them are close. The best of the bunch is the blue 1980 (third in the gallery above) which has just had a lot of recent, documented work done but needs a carb rebuild and other TLC before it’s road-ready. The rest need a good bit more work, but all appear to be conceivably restorable and have clean CO titles.

Many of the Brats have had their engines pulled, and are sitting in their respective beds; all except for the red ’81 come with the 1.6L EA-71 flat-four engine (red truck has the 1.8L). Some were removed in running condition but certainly, all will probably warrant a rebuild before they go back in.

Probably the best thing about this guy’s collection is the literal mounds of spare parts, which are all included in the price. A lot of this stuff is pretty tough to find, and you could probably wheel and deal with other Brat owners online to trade for any other stuff you may need to fix these up. I’ve always had a soft spot for these cute little trucks and would love to own one someday; sadly, I don’t have room for five! If you’ve got the space and the time to fix these up you could probably do pretty well for the price.

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  1. Bob

    These have been on Craigslist for at least a year. Guy won’t budge on the price

  2. Dean

    Oh, Brat!…no room.

  3. Beatnik Bedouin

    I think the BRAT (known as a Brumby in Australia) was one of the last projects that the late Alex Tremulis was involved in.

    One of my employees in my mental stampings business in L.A. bought one, brand new, and absolutely loved it. Drove it everywhere.

    • That AMC guy

      Yes, Alex Tremulis did consulting work for Subaru, I think designing graphics and accessories. He also designed the experimental Subaru X100.

      Like 2
    • John

      Mental stampings. A curious concept, open to interpretation…

      Like 6
  4. chrlsful

    the Brat, Scamp (dodge/plym), ’60/6 Ranchero, & some Japanese ‘n Brits were all of-a-kind back in the day. Today I think there’s a few current releases in S. Africa and some other countries in this limited classification (ford’n chebby).
    It’s a great niche.
    My ’66 bronco 1/2 cab is kinda in there but not quite.
    Let’s bring back Wednes Wagons
    start a ‘tiny tuesdays’
    for these lill p/us.
    (oh, OK, I guess the minis from Japan can join too).

    Like 2
  5. Metoo

    I looked at the ad and yes I did see two of the “death seats” for the back in the pile ‘o parts that are part of the deal. Since they are all early ones, who knows, he may have more seats.

    Like 3
  6. Jack M.

    This stash of Brats was hard enough to get my head around, now I have to try to figure out what “mental stamping “ is!!!

    Like 6
  7. Chebby Staff

    Dude should have collected VW buses, they’d be worth a fortune. These are basically junk.

    Like 3
  8. C.Jay

    Last year a Brat sold for $13200 at BJ along way from a 100k VW Bus but still respectable .

  9. Russell Casey

    I own a new Subaru Outback Limited and I still laugh at the early Subaru vehicles as I did in the 80s. :)

  10. DaveA

    Junk then junk now!

    Like 1
  11. 433jeff

    I drive a 87 turbo wagon in the summer and a dual ranger in the winter, tough tough cars, cheap cars i did the head gaskets in the turbo car along with the belts, so im good for a while. I cant afford to pay for a new car or the repair, wagons fit all my gear, all was well till i drove a mercedes 300 te wagon last year, now thats comfort. As far as these brats they are great rigs, i would loved the 83 turbo wagon, no timing belt. O got a ej22t going in something, maybe a 84 4×4 gl10 2 door convert project coming up

    Like 1
  12. BOP_GUY Member

    Great find, I’ve always had a thing for these too. They aren’t worth a whole lot, with NADA putting fully restored examples at $4100 bucks. But like @C.Jay pointed out above, there’s always someone out there that’s willing to spend a lot more at auction! And like most other classic Subaru’s, there’s a strong cult following for these. One could make a ton of money parting them all out, but hopefully they’ll be fixed up and put back on the road!

    Like 1
  13. Doug

    I owned and drove an ’85 2nd gen Brat for years – It always got me to where I needed to go, dry or snow. The only thing that I had to replace other than a battery and a couple of light bulbs was the electric fuel pump at about 105k. I seldom used the A/C – just popped up the T tops and opened the rear sliding window. It was my daily driver until I bought a used ’01 Forester in 2004, which I am still driving with over 275K on it. If properly maintained, Subarus are great cars, especially if you live where it snows. They are also pretty easy to work on if you have the appropriate Haynes manual.

    Like 1
  14. James Martin

    Here in Colorado there pretty valuable. Economical 4×4 with dependability of a vw, with a heater. But with all that said I think he would be better off selling the ones that run and maybe Ebay parts. Been on list for over 2 years started at over 6000 now down ti 4500. Might take 2500 but still pricey for the first gen.

    Like 1

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