Build or Buy: Badass Bunny Pickup

VW has made some interesting cars throughout their history: the Italian-bodied Karmann Ghia, the offroad-esque Thing, and the over-the-top Phaeton uber-sedan. Back in the late 70s, they thought a small pickup truck would be a great addition to their lineup, so they lopped off the back of the made-in-the-USA Rabbit and grafted on a pickup bed. While the front-wheel-drive pickup never really caught on, it’s made for some pretty great custom cars trucks.  If you’re looking for something to haul tiny cargo, here are two great options.

Argument: Build

Article: 1982 Rabbit Sportruck

One of the great benefits of Rabbit underpinnings is the Lego-like compatibility of parts. Volkswagen themselves noticed this, and the Sportruck trim added interior bits from the MK1 GTI and Scirocco, and jaunty bodyside decals. The powertrain was all Rabbit though, so don’t expect much in the way of “sport.” In fact, VW’s own ad stated the Sportruck (Sport Ruck? Spor Truck?) stated it “moves out from 0 to 50 in 9.7 seconds.” How many more seconds to hit 60?

So why this pickup? For one, it’s in pretty good shape. Yes, it needs a passenger fender, and front turn signals, and a new grille, but the silver body looks to be straight and relatively rust-free. Unfortunately, someone removed/painted over the bodyside decals, and the front spoiler is missing, but the interior is complete. But best of all, this Caddy (as they were called in Europe) is only $1400. Take a look at the ad on for more information on this New Springfield, Ohio trucklet.

Argument: Buy

Article: 1981 Rabbit Truck

Besides looking completely show-ready, this Rabbit truck has some real sport under the hood: VW’s incredible VR6 engine. Oh yes, this itty bitty little bunny is sporting some serious horsepower. We can only imagine what the power to weight ratio is for this little terror. That killer engine also has some mild cams and new chains and guides. It’s mated to an 02A 5-speed transmission and it has a limited-slip differential.

The fun doesn’t stop there. This over-engined sport truck has Recaro seats, an all-black interior, a Mk1 Scirocco steering wheel, and much more.

All that kit comes with a price: the seller is asking $12,000. And if you want the wheels pictured, that price will be higher. The ad on has more information. The truck is in (strangely enough) Pickerington, Ohio.