Last week’s Lumina C roofless minivan didn’t fare well, and only a couple of you vaulted over the Chevy’s open gunwale to vote Buy.
If your previous qualms were for practicality or safety, though, today’s nominee might just woo you over. It’s practical enough to hold dozens more passengers than the Lumina C, and it’s so safe, doctors regularly rode in it for years. And since it’s a decommissioned military medical transport, you might imagine the 4077’s Hawkeye and Pierce among such white coats (though this might not be particularly reassuring).
Now that “Suicide is Painless” is steadily looping in your brain, stop trying to remember the lyrics and use it as a soundtrack while you examine this 1988 International 1853/Am-Tran bus, once used by the US Air Force.
This example carries International’s DT 466 straight 6 diesel, which put out 210 hp when new. That’s not much, but unless you’ve entered a bus racing championship a la Top Gear, it will get you and your 44 passengers where you need to go before the morphine even wears off.
Oddly enough, the DT 466 didn’t make its professional debut until 1994, which means this is a swap. But, partner, never mind all those minor details. Allow me to put my arm around your shoulders and steer you toward this fine automobile’s many virtues.
First of all, it’s almost exactly like a 1976 Porsche 911. Both have 210 horsepower six-cylinder engines, and both of those hang out behind their rear axles for a sporty, RR layout.
And let’s face it, partner, you’re going to be far more comfortable in the bus, anyway. It comes with a brand new air-ride driver’s seat, and its multiple passenger benches can be removed, so up to 16 of your friends can ride along in stretchers.
All uncomfortable and greasy car salesman allusions aside, a bus like this could actually make a pretty practical adventuremobile for your next hunting trip. Imagine enough space for a dozen of your friends, two dozen guns, and 30 deer. Plus, the short wheelbase and high ground clearance means an easy navigation of those backwoods single-lanes. Getting your Class B might just be worth hooning this around in deep snow.
Used buses, especially government issue examples, don’t command much. But most of them are painted like a block of Velveeta and carry more than 150,000 miles. This don’t-bomb-me white and Air Force green copy has only ever clocked one sixth of that: 25,000 miles.
So what say you? Does this mercy machine, with its special outfitting and shiny condition warrant a price tag of 15 grand from your pocket, or would you rather do to it what it feigns to already have done and M*A*S*H it into a wall?
Vote in the comments!