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Unhinged: Waxing Poetic On The Subaru Baja

Unhinged: Waxing Poetic On The Subaru Baja

Here’s the weirdest thing I’ve ever wanted…a Subaru Baja. Why in God’s name would I want one? Mainly…it was the only ute left. The El Camino died before I finished kindergarten. The Subaru BRAT left the U.S. market about the same time, and about the time I started really looking at these things, it was the same time Pontiac took the concept of the G8 ST ute (read: Holden Commodore utility) and ran in through the shredder. I actually had money set aside for a G8 ST at one moment. So yeah…I wanted a ute. But I didn’t want a classic car. I didn’t want the classic ute, not an Elky or a Ranchero or a Rampage. I wanted something late-model that I could beat on. I wanted the anti-Ford Ranger, which everybody and their mother seemed to scoop up. And at the time, I was hanging with Subaru people. If you don’t think I could’ve given the EJ a kick in the pants for a few more horsepower, think again.

The car that Mr. Regular reviews here is exactly how I’d want one: slightly lifted, slighty modded, just rough enough that I’m not scared of harming it, but good enough that I trust it. Again, it sounds strange, but when I owned a pickup truck I never used it as a truck. Not really. I didn’t haul much of anything with the ’84 D100 I owned, and the only time I put the 2001 Ram 1500 to the test, it was a move. The end, nothing more. That truck only saw work because I loaned it to a friend that needed a pickup for a week.

The itch to find a more purposeful vehicle for BangShift Mid-West is more aggressive than ever. Or maybe that’s just dry winter skin, I’m not sure yet. I wouldn’t mind one of these, I really don’t think so. But hell, I change my mind on my likes and dislikes every hour on the hour when it comes to cars. But the Subaru Baja is one of those machines that I think would be better than I expected. The comfort of a Legacy, the all-wheel-drive, the little bed out back…just enough utility.

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5 thoughts on “Unhinged: Waxing Poetic On The Subaru Baja

  1. crazy

    Any kid that grew up, and saw the brat, in the 70’s. wanted a Baja.
    U R A BUS missed the boat and should’ve offered a reg cab, 2 seater.
    Problem was, those that wanted them, didn’t have the means to buy them.
    The fact that Subaru’s became the yuppie’s goto make didn’t help sales either.
    yuppies bought subarus or jeep g/c. and those light in the loffers, bought vw’s.
    Ah, the late 90’s early 00’s

  2. DanStokes

    My oldest brother had lusted after a Baja for years and finally found one, a flood recovery. It had the typical leaky head gaskets which he and I swapped (this was our second set so now we’re getting good at it) and fixed a couple more flood-damaged things but really it was in decent shape. It’s running great and is his DD though he does have 1 minor trouble code that he’s trying to track down.

    The moral of this story: he LOVES it. He’s a had a series of Subys and all have given great service but this one is his fave. He built a lockable tonneau just to keep cargo safe but other than that he just enjoys it. So your interest seems justified.

  3. Appleseed

    When these things came out I asked a rep at the Chicago Auto Show why they didn’t call it the BRAT? Oh, we’re trying to get away from that name. WHY? The BRAT was rad.

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