Live Auctions

Rust-Free Survivor: 1985 Subaru BRAT

If you’ve ever tried to find a Subaru BRAT worthy of your time, you’ve likely encountered lots of rustbuckets along the way. Vintage Japanese tin was not robust, a fact that became especially evident on BRATs that lived in the snow or rust belts – two places that its capable four wheel drive system would prove useful. This BRAT thankfully never went very far east and as as result, it remains impeccably clean underneath. The seller claims to have tracked these unusual pickups for some time and that he knows a winner when he sees one – this 1985 model here on eBay is described as one of the most rust-free examples he’s encountered. Bidding is over $7K with the reserve unmet.

The BRAT is an emerging classic, with the best examples now selling for real money. Unfortunately, the wind goes out of the market’s sails for anything less than exceptional, as I’ve found out trying to sell a project-grade example. Despite their mild cult status, most Subaru enthusiasts don’t believe these offbeat 4x4s are worth much – which is truly a shame, as there’s no doubt in my mind they are eminently collectible. Truth be told, it wouldn’t surprise me if top-shelf BRATs don’t even go to homes with any direct connection to the Subaru brand but to enthusiasts who simply appreciate the best examples of a vintage model. Note the mudflaps – look at how perfect the red lettering is.

Now, despite the seller’s emphasis on how special the BRAT is for its rust-free chassis (which is absolutely worth noting), the listing goes on to point out a few flaws. It has been repainted, and not to the same level as a factory paint job. The seller also notes that while the bed is in excellent shape, it, too has been painted poorly. The jump seats in the bed are present and nicely preserved, but the seller notes that the seat belts in the bed were jammed up because of debris that has gotten into the mechanism, which may point to lots of time being stored outside. The interior is in great shape, with the exception of the dash. Mileage is noted as being 79,930 and is believed to be genuine.

The seller notes that the drivetrain is in good running order, with service records accompanying the sale and demonstrating an ongoing commitment to regular servicing. The engine bay is detailed nicely but not overly so, with the quirky Subaru storage arrangement for the jac and spare tire proudly on display. The air cleaner is still painted its iconic baby blue paint, and aside from the generally message appearance of almost every 80s-era Japanese vehicle engine bay, there’s nothing apparently out of place. The seller is right to highlight the BRAT’s rust-free condition, but whether that’s enough to push it past reserve remains to be seen.


  1. Haig L Haleblian

    I’m no prude, but the pics of the girlfriend really don’t add much credibility of the seller. Pass.

    Like 13
    • Weasel

      I bet you didn’t notice that her left shoe is untied.

      Like 5
    • chrlsful

      agreed, def a detraction, “Move a lill to the left, plez 8, 12 ft?”. I can’t C da car. I thought U meant the adds between the BF pics.
      Gone at $11,9 anyway.


    I dig the Chick in the pics, old school marketing is cool.

    Like 7
  3. Car Nut Tacoma

    Nice looking car. I remember the Subaru Brat. I’ve never driven one, nor have I owned one. But I remember when it was on the US market.

    Like 1
  4. MH

    That lady is probably a Grandma now anyway. That was 35 years ago.

    Like 6
    • Tim

      I don’t think so. Women with tattoos were definitely not a thing in 1985. That is today’s idea of ‘80’s T and A!

      Like 6
  5. 433jeff

    With a cap this is the best dog vehicle as you can slide open behind you and dog can look out your window. 80 k miles means you can go quite a ways if you take care of it, no worries about paying for timing belt repairs. I would kill to find the 83-84 wagon body, being from New England you need to import from Colorado,oh wait now that Colorado is fished out you needto go to Washington, im a big fan of the dual ranger when it snows. Simple tough great gas mileage. I love the 93-94 era, just about gone in New England.

    Like 2
    • S. Rea

      I live in Colorado and I have owned over a dozen Brats. If it was in decent condition than I probably bought it. All that’s left is parts and rust. My daily driver is in better condition than that one.

  6. John

    Man, her pants are almost off. That’s worth another topless bar dollar bid right there!

    Like 6
  7. Sandy McInnes

    Nice looking ride! Oh, and the car is pretty sweet too!

    Like 5
  8. mainlymuscle

    I like these little things.I also Like “Doug” the seller from Vegas.Yes,he talks too much,but his detail,and photographic presentation is second to none.He puts as much effort into the less expensive cars, like this Brat, as he does when he’s selling a high dollar Vette.As for the girls ? If you are offended by the way girls and cars just seem to go together,enjoy your monthly Hemming magazine,as there are way too many pretty girls here on the interweb !

    Like 4
  9. C.Jay

    I have to laugh when I see a trailer hitch on a Brat! My grandfather bought a new Brat and the dealer assured him it would pull their 13 Scotty camper trailer. He called me and asked “You have a trailer hitch on your Buick don’t you?” I went to find him stuck between two hills. The Brat didn’t have enough power to get them out of the valley!

    Like 6
    • chrlsful


  10. Curt

    I had a 1986 that was T Boned when I only had 10,000 miles on it and totaled. This is a nice looking Brat but as far as interior is concerned, I do see I cigarette burn towards the front of the drivers seat. So immaculate it isn’t.
    Would be nice to have though and bring it to it’s original glory.

    • Donek

      A cigarette burn? That’s it?

      • Curt

        Nope, carpet filthy also.
        Next question?????

  11. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    It must be a marketing thing in Henderson, NV. This is the second one with an almost naked chick in the last few days.

    • Daver66

      They were good vehicles, would go anywhere in 4 wheel drive. Had an 86 loved it, but rust got to strategic frame members under the bed, nothing to be done at that point. Did manage to sell it for 15 hundred, guy wanted it for parts.

  12. Barry Traylor

    I have 2 questions, does this include the girl? And never having seen a Brat with the hood up Is that a good place for the spare to be, next to the engine?

    Like 1
    • Stevieg Member

      That is where Subaru put spare tires back then, all model vehicles. No, that is not a good place for the spare lol. I’ve driven a few of their products & am grateful I never had a flat & had to use a cooked spare tire lol.
      Better location than the spare for my newer Dodge Caravan spare tire though lol. I can’t even get to that at all!

  13. CCFisher

    I’m a gay man, and I have to tell you that from my perspective, the woman is just like a cheerleader at a football game, blocking my view of the players in those tight pants.

    Like 3
    • Stevieg Member

      That is funny!
      I’m not judgmental, and I too love football, but I personally like the cheerleaders lol. I guess I can understand where you are coming from though lol. As long as you enjoy the game, that is all that counts!
      Go Packers!

    • chrlsful

      U do CC !

      Like 1
      • chrlsful

        (no more edit function on my BF)
        1 lousy ltr wrong

  14. Tom

    Chicken Tax evader!

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