This is my 1979 Subaru BRAT GL. BRAT stands for Bi-drive Recreational All-terrain Transporter.
It was built in Japan as an export only model aimed at the European, Australian and American Markets â€“ at the request of the President of Subaru of America. It was known as the Brumby in Australia. It has a 1600cc, 68 hp, 4 cylinder, boxer engine. The Subaru BRAT is based on the 4-wheel drive Subaru Leone station wagon.
In America there is a so-called Chicken Tax of 25% imposed on, among other things, light trucks. This tax was introduced in 1963 in response to French and West German taxes imposed on the importation of chicken from America. To get around this the seats, along with seatbelts, in the pick-up bed were added to make it a 4 passenger car and so avoiding the tax. Several manufacturers still use a similar method to get around the Chicken Tax. Many people removed the seats due to insurance issues and to make more room to haul stuff. There were about 23,000 imported in 1979 and around 80,000 in total, from 1978 through to 1987. The BRAT was restyled in the early 1980s to give it a much more angular style, similar to other cars of the time. It has single range on the fly 4WD, which was rare in those days, but not for Subarus!