Mid-Engine, Manually-Shifted Van: 1991 Previa

Sure, it looks like an egg, but we respect the Previa. What other minivan has offered a mid-engine layout, manual trans, supercharger and all-wheel drive? Sadly, one couldn’t combine all of these concepts, as it seems all supercharged Previas were of the automatic, rear-wheel drive variety.  Today’s feature is a rare one with its five-speed manual.  The addition of Lexus SC430 “pie plate” wheels is an added bonus.  We stand by previous claims that this is among the five ugliest OEM wheels ever offered.

This is a 231K mile van, but it’s a Toyota, so maybe it’s just getting broken in. The seller has had quite a bit of maintenance done recently, but anyone buying should assume this high mileage vehicle will occasionally need attention. That means anyone buying should be prepared to take to YouTube for videos on how to get to the engine for even the most basic of services. It is, after all, located under the floor between the front seats.

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Laguna Beach, CA, USA
$3,800

Here’s the delightfully odd profile and those hideous wheels. Oh, those wheels.

Odd from every angle (which is to say we love it).

Sorry, there’s no S/C badge on the right rear corner of this’un.

This money shot shows the manual shifter.  We assume seats look like the inside of a pumpkin when we see cheap seat covers used for hiding.

How about one more show of that shifter and a touch of dash. It looks like a double DIN head unit will fit here. That means Android Auto can bring you all the modern technology you need!

Here’s the third row. The second has been removed, but that’s a temporary issue.

Here’s the second row, which appears to be in great shape.

Yes, there’s cargo space behind that third row!

Ad text:

ULTRA RARE 91 TOYOTA PREVIA/ESTIMA 5SPEED MANUAL! Mid-engine, RWD, old-school Original TOYODA PRODUCT(YES Toyota with a D) Extensive maintenance has been done. Here’s what I did just in the last 3 months…..New NGK Iridium IV spark plugs and NGK wires, Brand new Clutch master cylinder, Brand new slave cylinder, Brand new Stage 2 Carbon Kevlar clutch and new transmission fluid, brand new rear main seal, brand new tie rods, brand new ball joints, Brand new rack and pinion, New stabilizer bar bushings, New control arm bushings, New stabilizer bar rod ends, new starter, new battery tie down. Drain, refill and seal rear differential, fresh oil change with Castrol 10w-40 with magnetic aluminum drain plug, BFI intake mod, Lexus SC430 plate wheels may or may not want to keep depending on the offer. Has a brand new alternator and belt. I might be forgetting something but yah, a lot of maintenance has been done! All pure and manual everything! Also has the Tow Package! I believe I’m only the second owner since I bought it.Just drove it to Vegas and back with no problems. Cons are has dime size dents here and there, could use some paint, Needs a new cat and o2 sensor. (no prob with smog). Needs a new compressor for the AC if you want AC(Windows down in Cali is the way to go). Heater works and Fan works. Also the interior is fairly clean. 7seater, 5 with the middle row taken out easily, and 3rd row can be folded out of the way to reveal huge cargo space if you need it. I was going to stance it out but I don’t have any more to keep it. Original, oldschool, and bad ass bippu or stance start. 3800obo negotiable. CLEAN TITLE and Registered until April of 2018, 2nd owner, 231kMI. Other pics are examples of how it could be modded. Email me if your interested. Thanks

Factory Supercharged Subaru Sambar Posing as VW

Once upon a time, a Subaru 360-based Sambar van was sold in the US market. This is the fifth generation, which was produced from 1990 to 1998 and was never sold here.  The VW appearance it cute and all, but we’d prefer this just be a proud Subie.  Surely nothing has been done that can’t be undone.

Although this is for sale in Canada, the seller claims it’s the rear-wheel drive version, not the all-wheel drive. So, it might be happier moving south. although we imagine the engine sits atop the drive wheels and makes this acceptable in slippery conditions.

The biggest downside here is the automatic trans; but this was never going to be a track car, anyway.  We’d love to take this for a spin, what with the tiny, supercharged four cylinder and small overall package.  This uses Subaru’s period Kei Car engine, but is not technically a Kei Car itself, presumably because of size and/or mass.  Anyway, this is a cool little find and we wonder whether the reserve is more realistic than the buy-it-now price.

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Pickering, Ontario, Canada, Eh
$1,005 dollarettes with 13 bids, reserve not met, $13,985 BIN and two days to go

VW badge and paint scheme are clearly not original.  We’d like to return it to Subaru glory (and that’s coming from a Vanagon owner).

Profile is about as compact and boxy as anything out there.  Yes, that’s a glass roof, too!

Rear wiper and exposed exhaust tip are nice touches.

Yep, it’s officially cute.

Here’s the unfortunate automatic shifter and odd aftermarket wheel.  We hope the flag comes with.

Seating for four -maybe five really skinny people?

And, yes, there’s cargo room behind the second row.

IS this a panoramic roof way ahead of its time, or a vista cruise roof way behind?

Ad text:

This unique eye catching RHD Subaru Sambar Dias is one you don’t want to miss. Featuring the VW front end conversion and a beautiful two tone paint scheme, this Dias is perfect for any collector or enthusiast. 

Very fun to drive with it’s SuperCharger, plus lots of cargo space in a relatively small package if looking to use it as a right hand drive postal vehicle. 

Great visibility with so many large windows makes backing into tight spaces a breeze! 

Eligible for export to the USA. 

Millage is in miles converted from KMs on the dash. In Kilometers It is approximately 94000. 

Item specifics
Condition: Used
Seller Notes: “Looks and runs great.”
Year: 1990
VIN (Vehicle Identification Number): KV3023410
Mileage: 54,409
Drive Type: RWD
Make: Subaru
Model: Sambar
Sub Model: Supercharged
Trim: 4 door
Exterior Color: white and yellow
Engine: 4 Cylinder, 660cc SuperCharged! ( KW / BHP )
Interior Color: grey

Good Morning, Vietnam-Style Citroen Truckette

Just picture this in blue with Tuan (AKA Phan Đức Tô) stealing it with eggs falling out the back.  You get the picture…

This is basically a 2CV with a small van body on the rear and these were in production and in use for many years.  This is hard to beat from a coolness perspective, but potential buyers should take note the top speed is around 50 MPH, as proudly stated by the seller.

Apparently, this one came from France via the UK, has had a new chassis/frame installed and runs great.  Further, the logo is described as “removable vinyl”.  Everything is removable with enough effort, but we hope that means this is a cling or fairly new decal.

What would you do with this little beast?

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Ramona, CA, USA
$16,500

What’s not to love here?  Three-lug wheels are a bonus!

Here’s that 2CV front end.  Note relatively modern headlamps on this 1973 example.

Rear has barn doors for easy access.

Inteirios is simple and pure 2CV.  Shifter should be a rod which rotates into different positions to shift.  We love it!

Here’s the 600cc powerhouse!  Plastic fan again reveals this is a late production 2CV (or is that aftermarket??).

Ad text:

Vintage French vehicle. This 1973 had a new chassis installed in England before venturing to America. It’s a 1973 Citroen Truckette formerly used as a work vehicle in a French Village.
Has a small 602cc 2 cyl. Engine that will power the vehicle to speed for close to 50mph. Runs great, is easy to maintain. Comes with a cover tailored to the car. The logo is a removable vinyl. No more than 150 examples of these vehicles are in the USA. The car runs great. The speedo show 87,716 Kilometers or in miles that is 52,629 miles

All for Naut? Nautica, that is…

Co-branded cars sometimes make sense, but it’s clear that the buying public never really “got” the Mercury Villager Nautica special edition.  These were around for a few years and with a couple color schemes, all involving blue and white with a yellow stripe (of course!).  We here at Oddimotive HQ really like white wheels, which were definitely a “thing” for a while.  Unfortunately, given the two-tone nature of the Nautica paint scheme, we can’t quite call this fully monochromatic.

With or without Nautica livery, these vans were the result of a JV between Ford and Nissan, such that the Quest is basically the same van and all are powered by the nearly-ubiquitous-in-higher-end-US-market-Nissans-at-the-time Nissan VG30 V6 engine.  The Quest, however, lacked the Nautica coolness and wasn’t part of a now-orphaned brand; so this is the one to get today!

In fact, if you can put up with a slush box, this is a pretty good family hauler for the money, given the 100ish thousand mile VG is hardly broken in and the condition is quite amazing.  You’d just have to explain to millennials over and over that not all vans always had two sliding doors…

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Calabasas, CA, USA
$2,950

The thick chrome above the grill is a bit much, but the rest of the style is pretty anonymous and doesn’t look too dated, despite this van’s age.  This has certainly aged better than the Uplander/Relay/Terraza/Montana, which were ugly from birth.

Nothing offensive here.  Yes, one can utilize the roof rack for additional capacity/toy hauling and, yes, that’s a moon roof wind deflector (dealer installed and still attached?).

The interior is benign enough not to have aged terribly, too.  Double-din stereo means a modern, aftermarket navigation/Android Auto/CarPlay unit will fit…

Note fancy, two-tone leather with Nautica logos.

Why yes, all three rows have those logos!

Ad text:

1998 Mercury villager NAUTICA EDITION ,,like new condition, one owner, runs great,low miles 102k, INTERIOR IS like new !!captain chairs, Moonroof, Rear Air,, .new tires this is a one-of-a-kind minivan is just in great condition , no dents no scratches current registration clean title priced to sell $ 2950 call

Astroghini: The Lambo Van

It seems this van was once on a TV show – funny how quickly we all forget.  Anyway, it’s an Astro minivan made to look sorta-kinda like a Lamborghini and with very few functional doors.

The seller says this needs to be trailered home, but it’s not clear whether that’s just because it has no glass, or if there’s another problem.  The seller does also say it runs “good.”  The title is still in the name of “Gwars Productions”, which seems to indicate it’s never been sold before, even though a quick Google search shows at least one previous attempt.  Does this have anything to do with the band???

The TV show in question was the creatively named “Ultimate Car Build Off”, which lasted one season (ten episodes).  This van was featured on the first episode.

If you’re the one person out there who longs for the show’s return, maybe this van makes sense for you.  Otherwise, it’s hard to imagine who might use it.  Surely, you can find an excuse at $1,500.  The 4.3L V6 should soup of pretty nicely, but, really, this seems like a good MR candidate, as long as you also make the rear doors functional for engine service.

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East Hampstead, NH, USA
$1,500 with ZERO bids and 6.5 days to go

Top has been chopped eight inches and vehicle has been lowered six.  The front does show the Lamborghini influence.

Side view shows the chop and the aggressive-for-an-Astro wheels.  The lack of a rear door is normal here.

No opening door here…

The sliding door on longer opens – note the glass.

Cluster is…interesting and interior was never finished out.

Roll cage extends into the unfinished – and essentially inaccessible – rear.

Ad text:

One of a kind for sure
1994 Chevy Astro Van
This van was built on the discovery show called Ultimate car build off. About 4-5 years ago
Was named Astroghini on the show
Runs & drives good. Van has a 4.3 engine, automatic, ps,pb.
Nice project for someone who wants a real one of a kind
Top was chopped 8″ & suspension was dropped 6″
Retains factory windshield. Which they laid it back ( nice job too )
Rear & back side door are welded shut
Roll cage inside
Interior is gutted out
Will need to be trailered home
No glass in doors
Have title in Gwars Productions name
Last chance to buy this one 
Get your better half permission before you bid
No reserve so bid to win 

The Warrior – A Delightful Combination of Hideous and Creepy

What do you get when you add murals, mods, tufting, custom cabinets, a Vista Cruiser roof and far too many LED lights to an Astro van?  This – THE WARRIOR!

The seller is both the 4th and 2nd owner of this van.  Apparently, he sold it and then traded something to get it back.  Somewhere in there, it got murals on its marbled paint, custom cabinetry that would look at home in a “grand-parental” farmhouse, many references to WARRIOR and many more highly questionable mods.

The seller hopes there’s someone out there who thinks this is worth something between $8,000 and $10,500.

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Sparta, WI, USA
$8,000 with zero bids, reserve not met, $10,500 BIN price and over six days to go

This shot this hardly hints at the wonders associated with this custom van.  It gets MUCH better.  Here, we can see custom wheels (could be worse), body kit, visor, spoiler and modified roof.  Note also the Pep Boys hood scoops/nostrils.

The driver’s side has a larger mural, what with no door in the way.  The murals depict some sort of ice warrior with polar bears (of course!).

The mural continues on the rear, where one can also see the fancy exhaust tips.

Nighttime is the right time to light up your van in order to entice significantly younger targets to enter.

Our first interior shot makes things look rather stock.  Don’t worry, it gets much better.

This shot gives a glimpse of the custom wood cabinet and flooring, along with loads of tufted velour and the Vista Cruiser roof.

Here, things start to get strange.  Note the figurines and (faux?) weapons.

WARRIOR!  the only saving grace here is this doesn’t look like a fuctional bed – maybe the seller cut up his victims on the floor or just hid them in a giant drawer under that seat?

Finally, here’s the back.  Admire the lack of windows, additional tufted velour, and grandma’s country-kitch curio cabinet full of who-knows-what!

Lest you thought the interior was too subtle, here’s a nighttime interior shot.

In case you were wondering, yes, the not-so-exciting 4.3L V6 has a cool air intake!  It might even be mounted under the non-functional hood scoops.

Ad text:

“The side and rear doors power lock has not been connected.some paint chips on front have been touched up the marble paint is very forgiving.5″ crack in top layer of vista cruiser side windowpassenger side been there sins installation in 2000.”

I am the 2nd and 4th owner of the van, I bought the van in 2000 after it was in an accident the battery was bad so no millage was shown.
we replaced the frond end with a 2000 GMC frond and installed the new battery,it showed 24380 for millage .but the tittle reads not actual.
I sold the van to a friend in 2002 with 34062 MI,then in 2008 I took it back in trade with 69110 MI on it and decided  to redo it.
In January 2011 i finished the last mural ,the van has 100+ awards. It is stored in the winter and always garage kept when not in use.
Features: Oak and carpeted floor and oak cabinets
               Blue marble paint with murals and clear coat
               Sony stereo radio CD with Pyle powered sub
               1969 Oldsmobile vista cruiser roof with spoiler
                Over head console with CB radio and lights
                18″ wheels with low profile tires
                 New alternator-belt-and interstate battery in 2014
                 Lots of LED lights in and out,some with remote control
Cruise control is aftermarket.

Factory Turbocharged, Manual Minivan

Who could have offered such a beast?  Plymouth, of course!

The seller claims this is a two-owner car and has had recent mid-level service and some hidden upgrades.  If it is truly as good as described, this could be a pretty awesome family hauler!  The 2.5-liter turbocharged four put out 150HP and 180 lb-ft in stock form and should deliver that power and torque in a fun manner…

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Austin, TX, USA (keep it weird!)
$5,500 buy-it-now with six days to go

Custom wheels might tip someone off that this isn’t an ordinary Chrysler minivan product.

Rear interior doesn’t give anything away and appears to be in very good shape with plenty of seating.

Here’s the stick shift money shot!

And, here’s that turbochaged inline four!

Ad text:

Super rare factory turbo voyager (same as dodge caravan) in excellent condition. I bought this from the original owner who bought it new in 1988. He kept it OEM stock for all these years and had it in amazing condition (20+ years of receipts). I’ve done a lot to it since then and my goal was to keep it stealth and 100% reliable. It comes with full interior (no rips) and ice cold R12 AC! It runs 15psi and is a blast to drive.  Never been to the track or abused. All work professionally installed no mickey mouse stuff. No leaks no issues no repairs needed. Here is what I’ve done since I’ve owned it.

Maintenance:
– rebuilt head with valve job, all new gaskets and bolts
– new motor mounts
– new left cv axle
– new thicker radiator, new fan motor, new thermostat, all new hoses (including heater host) and clamps
– new timing belt, new water pump, new distributer, plugs and wires
– power steering fluid flush
– new interstate battery with warranty
– all new driveline belts
– R12 A/C recharge

Performance:
– supra intercooler with custom piping
– custom cold air intake with 3.5″ amsoil filter
– synapse diverter valve with foam filer to keep it quite
– FWD computer
– turboXS manual boost controller
– 2.5″ OD dynomax muffler with stock downpipe and stock dual tip side exit exhaust

Located in central Texas north of Austin. Price is firm at $5500 and not going to give it away. This is a rare combo in Plymouth form with 7 seats!

RHD, Manual Renault Avantime

The Avantime was a strange MPV sold by Renault, but engineered and manufactured by Matra.  It is sometimes known as the vehicle that killed Matra.  Continue on to find out more!

No, this car isn’t in the US – it is in the UK, which was originally blessed with new Avantimes.  Sadly, Nissan never rebadged this for US sale, as we must say this is simultaneously one of the worst and best cars of the last couple decades.  It is clearly ugly in many ways, but one must applaud it daring to be different.  Different works for grabbing attention, but, as Matra found out, it doesn’t keep a company running all by itself.  Almost ironically, Renault’s alliance partner Nissan Europe was circling like a vulture and swooped in to occupy Matra’s Trappe offices immediately after the Avantime helped take them down.

What you get with this car is a two-door MPV with two rows of seats and an early version of a panoramic roof.  These were upscale Renaults and not at all cheap in their day, so you get a host of early 2000s luxury features.  In this case, it’s powered by a 2-liter, inline four cylinder powering the front wheels through a manual transaxle.  Others has the PRV 3.0-liter V6 or a 2.2-liter turbodiesel.

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Clacton-on-Sea, Essex, UK
£2,490

Front end is the least weird view of this MPV.  Condition appears great, though that might be fading on the plastic center caps – they look like every remaining stock B13 Sentra SE-R’s.

Would you like some straked venting?

Profile confirms that this was designed in the same era as he ill-fated Vel Satis and the not at all ill-fated Mégane II.

The rear is where things get really weird, which is also true with the Renault contemporaries listed above.  They were really into this ‘shelf’ design with the upright rear window.

Rear view.  What more can we say?

Note that both sides look about the same – there’s no suicide door to access the rear on either side.  Access was granted through LONG doors.  Of course, this is the driver’s side on the RHD example.

Yes, there is cargo space behind that second row.

The two-tone interior is nice, but not quite as bold as the exterior.  This vehicle suffers from one of the worst ideas of the early 2000s – center-mounted instruments.  That’s one thing that helped Renault offer this in RHD, however.

Seats look stylish and supportive.

Ad text:

Metallic PURPLE, A Very Rare Car This and There Is Only 1 For Sale in the UK on Autotrader So Call Now and Reserve This !! The Car Had a Few Age Related Marks & A Touched In Scratch,, Black Full leather interior, Sunroof Electric, Climate Control, Sunroof Manual, Alarm, Alloy Wheels, Computer, Electric Windows, In Car Entertainment, Seats Electric, Upholstery Cloth/Leather. 5 seats, 800 Cars Sold Every Year ! Est 2008, Finance Available, Open 7 Days, Competetively Priced Delivery., £2,490 p/x welcome

Did You Know There Was An AWD Aerostar?

Your humble host was aware of the AWD Astro/Safari, but not its competitor, the AWD Aerostar.  Why is this interesting?  Because this could provide cool (in an ugly way), retro, all-weather transportation, including parts hauling.

The seller claims this is a 50K mile van and the condition sure looks great.  This has crank windows for simplicity and it looks like the interior is wipe-it-down vinyl for easy maintenance.  The stock Ford AM/FM radio is even present.  If, for some reason, you want to keep your Aerostar stock, you can get an FM transmitter and stream music from your phone without any mods – you’ll just have terrible sound quality.

While this isn’t exciting, this van is different and you won’t likely find one in similar condition any time soon.

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Mosheim, TN, USA
$4,000 Buy-It-Now

Aside from the bug deflector, which could have been a dealer-installed accessory, this appears completely stock, down to the ‘shared-with-Ranger’ steel wheels.  Compared to the GM Dustbuster vans (Lumina APV, TransSport and Silhouette), this is beautiful!

Here’s our first glimpse of the AWD badge on the lower left.

Classic minivan profile!

Maybe you’ll show this view to other motorists if you buy this!  Maybe not…

Cockpit is not particularly exciting,but is in great shape and is from a time when vehicles had fully-colored interiors.  Note the crank windows.

This is a 7-passenger van, which means it should haul about as many people as you could want to.  Having only one sliding door is now officially retro.

Seats (and spare?) are removable for more cargo space, but this isn’t terrible, considering it’s behind a third row.

This looks like a joy to work on!

Ad text:

 This 1991 Ford Aerostar short wheelbase AWD van is one of the best Aerostars left out there. If you like the Aerostars, as I do, this one is for you. This is a kind of unusual van being AWD in the short wheel-base version. This van has only had two owners since new. It has only 50,000 original documented miles on it. This van doesn’t smoke, shake, rattle, vibrate or any of the other bad things. I have owned several Aerostars, and this one is hands-down the best. It rides and drives like a new one, straight, smooth and steady. The AWD works perfectly and this van is very sure-footed on a slick road. The tires on this van only have 8000 miles on them. The only time this van has seen salt was one time this past winter and then it was then thoroughly cleaned up. It went better in snow than some 4×4 trucks I have had. Now the GREAT part about this van. It has absolutely NO RUST ANYWHERE! NONE! That is rare for a Ford Aerostar. It has been very well cared for and the interior and exterior show it. The interior is like new with all three rows of seats. The drivers seat is the only one that shows any wear at all, and it is minimal. Everything works on this van. The only drawback is that the A/C leaks down. If you know Aerostars, this is a problem with everyone I have had. I had spent a lot of money trying to fix Aerostar air conditioners only to have them leak back down. I find that it is cheaper to just gas them up once or twice a year. The exterior is also exceptional with minor sun fading of the clear coat on the hood and top and one small crack in the rear bumper. The exterior has a few miner bumps and scratches as you would expect but this van, as Ford Aerostars go, is a gem. You will not be disappointed. I reserve the right to end this listing at any time.