Post in 'The Gear' started by Stlshrk, Jan 25, 2010.
Like a 4wheeler or buggy with heat, and street legal
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There are 4 dealers there that specialize in them.
I'd be real careful to get verification on the "street legal" side of things - just because a vehicle is legal in some other country doesn't mean it's legal in the US... Until the DOT, EPA and a bunch of other gov't alphabet soup agencies have [del]been paid off[/del] tested and approved a vehicle, consumers in the "land of the [del]fee[/del] free" aren't considered smart enough to make a purchasing decision to get the vehicle they want...
Given that it can cost several hundred K$ to pay for the [del]bribes[/del] tests, it would seem most unusual to have a vehicle be made street legal and not have them on every dealer lot in the country... Makes me wonder if these might be some sort of "grey market" vehicles being brought in for "off-road use only"
Nah. . . I already got a wheelbarrow.
These trucks have been available here in Canada for a few years now and I am seeing increasing numbers on the road.My understanding is that they are pre 1990 models which will not pass Japans stringent current safety standards.That being said the old safety standards exceed our current ones so the trucks are legal here.The ones I have looked at have 660cc,yes cc, 3 cylinder engines with four wheel drive. They look to be lightly built so I don't think they would last too long with hard use.The local importers have Honda,Nissan and Subarus available.Oh yeah they are all right hand drive.I have never driven one so take all of what I have said with a grain of salt.
I would tend to agree that saying "street legal" and actually able to be regristered and driven on a public road are two different things. Even though they may have met some version of a Japanese standard, to import into the uS for over the road use would require DOT and EPA ceritification and as mentioned both dont come cheap. On the other hand, generally registration is handled by towns in New Hampshire and Maine and a lot of tother states so they will probably be willing to take your money and give you plates as long as there is a title. Of course NH and a lot of other states require emisions testing and thats where it will get sticky as most states hook into the OBD connector and query the computer and I expect that the vehicle will not be in the database so the car wont pass the test.
Caveat Emptor unless you want to only drive it on your property. Oh by the way better buy a spare for parts!
i want the thing with the tracks on it. I'm liking those Suzukis, but then I'm a Suzuki fan. I wonder if I can get Dad to get one of those and sell it to me real cheap if he ever gets tired of it.
No not really.
I'd suggest just getting an old chevy s10 or a ford ranger with 4x4. They're easy to work on, and any replacement parts would be easy to get- if ALL you want is that mini truck to move wood around, why not brainstorm to see what else you could use around the house. A new lawn tractor with a trailer behind it? Something with a snow plow attachment?
just a suggestion.
I have actually done a fair amount of info gathering on these little things. First, they all are from the used market, thats the only way they can be legally imported to the U.S. Second, they are NOT street legal in ALL areas. Some yes, some no. They are not known to be an exceptional 4x4. Yes it works but ground clearance is limited. There are tire kits to improve this. Parts are somewhat hard to get. Your not gonna run down to the local Parts-R-Us store and pick up a fuel pump for one of these things (yet). On the other side of the fence there are a couple of cool features.
They are heated and enclosed. A dump box feature is available (both rear dump or side dump). Excellent fuel mileage. Track kits are available. Small snow plows are available. As said above, wheel kits are available. Reasonable weight capacity. Small and nimble.
I find that the durability and parts issue is a deal breaker for me, but it would be a cool toy (while it ran).
I looked hard at them before I bought my Kubota. You can make them street legal by registering it in Montana - where they are legal, and have Montana plates on it, then it is legal in any state. There are some obvious drawbacks to that - like do you know anyone in Montana? And how does that work with your insurance?
Have you ever set in one? I am a fairly big guy, 6' 225, and I was uncomfortable in the ones I set in.
However, the people I talked to who owned them, seem to really like them.
If you have your own property and really want to move some wood and have the money: buy a tractor with a winch (perhaps the best way to pull a lot of wood out of the woods.)
If you have your own property and want to move some wood and don't have quite so much money: buy a half decent 4WD pick-up (parts are plentiful, you can load up a decent amount of wood in the bed and you can be street legal if needed . . . and incidentally, they do make tracked kits for Rangers and S-10s and Chevy Blazers if you really insist on getting a tracked kit -- we use them up here for grooming snowmobile trails.)
If you have your own property and want a play toy/working machine: buy an ATV with a trailer (they don't haul out as much wood, but you can snake through smaller areas . . . and when the work day is done you can go trail riding.)
My dad (A farmer by trade) has worked at a ski place for about 20+ years in the winter. he says they are about to sell one of their old Tucker Sno-Cats. We keep discussing how cool it would be to own one, but we never really come to any conclusions about what to use it for other than it would be neat.
They ain't street legal in Calif. Even if they are registered in Montana or somewhere where they are legal. You might be able to pass through Calif. driving one (or towing it behind an RV), but stay here long and you'll get yourself a rather expensive invite to the local courthouse.
That being said, the primary use for them here seems to be on large industrial / institutional / educational campuses, esp. for gardeners and maint. folks. They seem well suited for applications where the electric versions (like this: http://losangeles.craigslist.org/ant/rvs/1572088886.html) don't have the range or power. But most large campuses prefer 'lectric versions 'cuz they're quieter and less smelly. The mini trucks are also used on some large farms and ranches, where they do make a bit more sense.
Mini trucks are street legal ok Oklahoma on all roads except for Interstates, and Turnpikes,aftre all they are made in Poteau Ok. http://www.tigertruck.com/ also you can get some mattracks for them or your atv or truck etc. . http://www.mattracks.com/
I know a guy who has one in MN and he got bought it in Montana to get a title and was able to register it in MN. He drove it around town (pop 1,000) and got pulled over and was told the tires weren't up to code. So he got new tires and they pulled him over again for some other reason and was told he couldn't drive it or ELSE.
I don't see how they would be any more dangerous than a motor cycle for the rider. I think it will depend on how your local law enforcement people like you.
I agree that a used 4X4 S-10, Ranger or little Toyota (if you really want something from Japan) would be easier but much less cool.
These trucks come from very congested countries. Most of us are served very well by a ATV with a decent trailer.
I have driven the Wuling vehicles at work (http://www.sgmw.com.cn/en/). IMO they are capable but would need a broader 'mission' than just hauling firewood, like a large farm, orchard.
All the best,
Heck, just get one of these. Dang near the same thing, street legal and you can get parts pretty easy (other than body parts - they are non-existent). I have been beating the hell out of this one for many years.
There is a FC170 on ebay right now (mine is the smaller FC150 version): http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Jeep...ewItemQQptZUS_Cars_Trucks?hash=item3a572743cf
Oh - and these ugly little bastages are real 4x4 and old school jeep tough. Don't over rev the motor and they will just keep going. Low lock is truly low. BE AWARE, many of the older and smaller ones were lost due to tip overs at road speed. They were quite narrow and very short wheel based. They were made for many years with design changes along the way. Mine is a '59.
FC150 = 4 cyl
FC170 = 6 cyl and longer and wider.
And as far as weight capacity.......
On the second pick, it was reported as 2 tons. Got no idea on the 1st one, but its a bunch.
Wow, both of those are quite a load!
As far as the thread, I didn't mean to start anything. Just thought it was cool.
In VA I've seen quite a few of these with tags on the road. Most of them are owned by farmers. They must be pretty stout, I know one guy that takes a round bail of hay to the cow pasture most days during the winter. Then he just slowly starts backing down the hill and hits the brakes. The bail tumbles off and the cows don't give a $h!%. Funny stuff, eh? He gets alomst 50mpg to boot.
OH YEAH...... :lol:
Naaa....I don't think anything about this thread is confrontational. Those little trucks are pretty cool. I have looked at them long before this thread started %-P . Obviously, cuz I like that kind of crazy, quirky stuff.
First post here, but god willing they will sell these in the USA. The 2 door in standard would be my choice.
Diesel, 1.5 ton payload capacity, and 30 miles to the gallon. Looks like they have a deal going already with International truck, so I would assume you would be able to buy and service one at any International truck dealership.
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