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YAK Car Pic of the Day

Isuzu VehiCROSS, Olean, N.Y.

A 1999 New York Times review suggested theJapanese Isuzu VehiCROSS was a “4×4 abducted by aliens.” Well, it certainly looked different from anything else on the road at the time. But it is telling that the VehiCROSS was in production from only 1997-2001; not too many were sold. The plan was not to import more than 3,000 per year; at 28,900 1999 dollars, that was a pretty lofty goal, and just over 4,100 were sold in the U.S. in five years. If you’ve ever seen one you’re in rarified company. This one was found a while back in a driveway in Olean.

Even weirder from the front.

— Jim Corbran, You Auto Know

  • Joseph Coppola

    Sometimes a piece of cake is just a piece of cake.Sometmes just plain fugly is just plain fugly.

  • Stefan (ND92)

    I have the great privilege of owning such an awesome little vehicle. Its sporty, fast and fun. To a lot of strait forward thinkers who like the look of common everyday soap box looking cars, this vehicle looks “fugly”. I however think that even though its an older vehicle, its still better looking and more futuristic than anything on the road right now.

  • The only thing unusual looking with this vehicle is the grill. The two headlights and grill “fangs” are supposed to look like a cobra snake. In reality, the look is fairly close.

    The rest of the vehicle is a two-door sports-car hidden in SUV clothes. It’s got the wheels flairs of a C3 Corvette and the best lines of any small/large SUV. Think about it, this doesn’t look like you’re average, family big-azz SUV, does it? With it’s heavy, stiff frame and wide wheel-base, it doesn’t drive like one either!!!

    This will be a real collector for the open-minded crowd.

  • circmand

    These were never designed to be sold in large volumes. From the beginning Isuzu used ceramic molds for the body panels. Not as long lasting but much less expensive than the ones used for mass production. While most vehicles then and now look the same no matter who built them this sticks out from the crowd. Built as a rally car for Paris/Dakar it is more advanced than most vehicles today. So most likely you either love it or hate it based on whether you appreciate originality or you want to blend in.