Adventure-ready 1971 Scout

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The Scout would be a gas with the top off
The Scout would be a gas with the top off

If ever a little, red utility truck looked ready for some fun, the Pick of the Day is it. Just picture this 1971 International Scout loaded up with friends, family, picnic gear, camping supplies, surfboards, whatever, and heading out on a holiday adventure.

Originally designed to compete with the Jeep CJ and destined for life on the farm or worksite, the Scout was quickly adopted by outdoors enthusiasts for its sturdy, reliable and go-anywhere attributes. Spartan and simple, the original Scout that came out in 1960 had what you needed after you left the pavement behind, though little else.

The hardtop turns it into a snug little wagon

That was OK for most owners, and the Scout trundled through the ’60s little changed. A slightly upgraded second-generation 800A model launched in 1965 with improved creature comfort and engine options that made it more of any everyday vehicle than just a weekend warrior.

The 800B that followed in August 1970 was a short-lived version, produced for just eight months, bridging the gap between the original  models and the all-new Scout II, although it was mostly a cosmetic upgrade from the 800A.

This Scout 800B is a four-wheel-drive version powered by a 145-horsepower inline-6, which should be enough for the lightweight truckette, fed through a 3-speed manual transmission. The vehicle stands on aggressive all-terrain tires and comes with a removable hardtop. The odometer shows just under 67,000 miles.

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The interior is absolutely basic
The interior is absolutely basic

The Kentwood, Michigan, dealer advertising the Scout on ClassicCars.com describes the paint quality at “average” but notes that the body shows no signs of rust or damage. The minimalistic interior features bucket seats, windup windows and an aftermarket audio system, with a pair of shift levers jutting out from the floor, one for shifting gears and the other for engaging the four-wheel-drive transfer case.

With prices on essentially similar Ford Broncos and Toyota Land Cruisers continuing to climb, Scouts remain affordable while being more rare and distinctive. Parts are readily available and they enjoy a robust fan base.

This one is priced at $23,900, which is a bit high according to the value guides, but it still looks like a lot of fun for the money.

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

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Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.

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