Pickup and Ute are the symbols of freedom, economy and confidence. Unfortunately, soviet car-enthusiasts have only seen a few cars with these types of hood. Nowadays, the development of motor-culture in Russia leads to the tendency, that some of us bring cars from abroad and do crazy stuff with them, like reconstructing them into pickups or utes.
Because of some recent events, all the dreams of importing Chevy El Camino, or Holden Ute are delayed. The only solution for us is to use our own products. And we don’t really look forward to seeing new “legends”, brought us by Russian manufacturers. Even though there is Izh-2717, which is purely commercial, no one would actually enjoy it.
Nevertheless, there are always those petrolheads, who are ready to perform no matter what to build an original, rare custom car. One of them – Slava Arefjev from Nizhny Novgorod, Russia. At first, Slava, as, probably, most people, never thought about building a ute-hooded car. But then, in summer 2014, a friend told him about an unfinished mysterious-hooded car, built on the base of Izh-2717, which he had brought from Vladimir. Thanks to our Russian mentality, Slava bought this car in advance and began to perform the magic of building.
Besides being a nice ride for winter, Izh-2717 Ute is a perfect utility-car. For example, it is much more comfortable to transport your set of tires in the open body, than asking your mother-in-law to hold them, while going to the countryside. This type of body also allows you to transport a lot of things, such as bikes, snowboards, or even a skidoo, which makes this car a real must-have. Russian stance-community should love this car, as long as it attracts a lot of shocked looks, it’s serious and it’s a great utility car, and you can always give your granny a lift to her country house. By the way, here’s the story: a woman once wrote a letter to Ford, asking them to create a car, which could combine comfort and utility. This is how the first Ute body was created.
Slava spent a few weeks to lick this car into shape. The most complicated part of his job was to remove the rear cabin. Using the welding technique, he fixed the flipping sides, and as a consequence of all this work, he received a brand-new Ute.
Later, he painted his car, using chocolate-metallic paint. All the sharp edges were covered by self-made linings, and the floor was rubberized. Even though the inverted Izh logo is the only exterior customizing feature, the car attracts lots of attention because of its light-weight look.
Same thing with the interior - nothing unusual, besides the fact that all grey details were replaced by black analogs. The blackness of interior is varied by colored car-fresheners, brought from Slava’s previous car – Mitsubishi Lancer MR. The steering wheel was also replaced with a good looking wooden one.
As for the hardware, this car has a 1.6 8-valve engine and a VAZ transmission, borrowed from OC Club storage. Welded differential is a good complement, which allows Slava to have lots of fun drifting around supermarkets’ parking lots.
The most recent upgrade was placing a gas tank into cloth-coated trunk. This feature made Slava’s Izh a really great utility car, even though there is not enough space now to make an inbuilt Jacuzzi…
If you, or, probably, one of your friends owns a custom-made car, don’t forget to share it with us! The world should know about it!