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A Rabbit on steroids


When clicking through various candidates for Pick of the Day, I was stopped in my mouse tracks by this shockingly red pickup truck that looked like the offspring of a wild orgy involving a Dodge Viper, some sort of Ferrari and maybe a Dodge Ram pickup truck, or maybe not.

Come to find out, what this is — or was — was a 1981 Volkswagen Rabbit.

According to the private seller placing this vehicle for sale on ClassicCars.com, it’s a one-of-a-kind built with bodywork hand-fabricated from seven sheets of 20-gauge steel and has won “many best in shows and best engineered trophies.”

A Volkswagen Rabbit on steroids | ClassicCars.com Journal

It also was the centerfold in Hot VW’s magazine in 1993, but that was before its newest engine was installed.

The engine is a 2.0-liter high-performance, 16-valve Volkswagen four-cylinder modified to rev to 7,000 rpm. The engine has a high-lift cam, dual side-intake Weber carbs with 6-inch velocity stacks, a lightweight flywheel, Borg Warner oil cooler and other aftermarket or hand-fabricated parts.

The seller says the truck has exceeded 140 mph on a test track and is “way too much fun to drive.”

It’s the third engine installed in the little truck, which had a diesel when it rolled out of a VW assembly plant.

Among other modifications are Momo steering wheel and racing wheels, Neuspeed front and rear sway bars, Bilstein lowered suspension, custom upholstering, and, lest we forget, that ground-effects bodywork, covered in Ferrari Emron paint.

The truck is located in Toronto, Canada, and is for sale for $20,000.

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


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