There are contemporaries in the VW tuner scene who saw it up of a VW Think B ora is the best thing that piggyback golf can do. Of course, out of courtesy to the designers of the time, we don't want to agree with that. But in far-off Wareham in the US state of Massachusetts there is a company that has made exactly this a business model.
Pickup from the sawmill
Strictly speaking, the people at Smith Performance not only have it which in the USA as VW Jetta IV sold four-door cars, they also like to set the saw on the Audi A4 B6. And, in order not to completely rely on the topic of patriotism: The Dodge Charger LX is also a welcome guest in Massachusetts to cut away a little gold. Specifically, Smith Performance is about building a crazy pickup out of a standard car.
The flatbed trucks based on passenger cars have a long tradition in the USA, where they are called “Coupé Utility”, which is often broken down to the short form “Ute”. The Ford Ranchero and the Chevrolet El Camino, both launched in the late 1950s, are the best-known representatives of their guild to this day. Not quite as classic and only between ten and twenty years old, on the other hand, are the everyday young timers, which Smith Performance turns into 'Ute'.
The company's business model is easy to explain: First, a suitable victim is made The B-pillar is cut apart, then reinforcement sheets and plates and a form-fitting body panelingcultivated. If it all looks as chic as the US tuners imagine, it becomes a complete do-it-yourself kit that can be ordered there.
The conversion kits cost around $ 3,000, plus numerous videos and a free one -PDF handbooks give the interested reciprocating saw layman hints on his way to the future pickup owner. Smith Performance explains why the two German models are at the top of the list with their rigidity. In the Jetta and A4 in particular, the B-pillar is made so stable that it is no problem to do without the stabilization provided by the roof and C-pillar after adding further body reinforcements.
Cutting right now Smith Performance on a new project that will be available for do-it-yourself snipers in the future: The VW New Beetle, launched in the USA as a 1998 model, is currently being treated like the house. Because the original New Beetle, which is just 4.13 meters long, will only be of limited practical use as a pickup, the new concept from Smith Performance now provides for a 'stepside' conversion, with the platform side wall set back and the rear panel shaped accordingly Wheel arches create a special retro look.
The current range of bodywork acrobats is particularly interesting: If you pre-order the conversion kit for the New Beetle now, you will save over 2,700 dollars and get the complete set as soon as possible it went into mass production for just $ 500. It is quite possible that a number of fans from the VW tuning scene mentioned at the beginning will get their pocket calculator out and feverishly check the account balance. However: With a street legal it should be a little more difficult in Germany than in the new world.