What is with these people. I read so many reviews complaining about things that should have been observed BEFORE purchasing the vehicle. Why would you complain about the wierd looks and uselessness of the cargo area AFTER you buy the car? Wouldn't you think about buying something you actually like for $22K? COME ON!! I see all too many revies like this. Are people really this stupid out there??
I agree with the above comments and would also like to add that there are currently bed covers and camper shells available for the Baja.
I don't think this person actually owns a Baja. They object to its philosophy so much they acted like they own it just to complain about it. The fact is that Baja is not a "truck" and the macho truck guys need to calm down--if you want a big truck bed then buy a big truck bed. I've used the little truck bed for plenty of useful things, almost weekly, from bicycles to landscaping stuff to trash and recycling. I love being able to throw wet tents and camping gear into the bed rather than inside the interior of an Outback. The bed swallows 8-ft-long 2x4s even without the bed extender if you open the switchback and put the front of the boards up between the front seats. Its the only vehicle at Home Depot that doesn't have 2x4's sticking up at an angle out of the bed. I can put my canoe on a Yakima roof rack and have two bikes in the bed along with camping gear, while my wife, me and the dog can ride in the cab with none of that bothering us. Great useful car. Drives better than any truck. The real comparison should be to small SUVs, like the Honda CRV, which is comparable in some ways, but...has...no...bed.
Why would this guy buy a Japanese car if he despises them? As for his comment that "only from Japan would have come a bizarre car" in which they "took a wagon and chopped off the back"-- really? Does the Chevy El Camino or Ford Ranchero ring a bell? At least the Baja has a quad cab, an excellent AWD system, and real off-road abilities. Better mileage, better ride, better off-road guts than any American pickup, and most SUVs. I've used my Subaru to tow OTHER vehicles out of the snow and ice.
My wife wants a Baja, after owning two Brats, which routinely outdid any other pickups concerning off road. I never will forget the Jeep in the mud spinning like crazy going no-where, and when I drove through that same mud in the Brat and had no problems he got angry. Every Baja owner that my wife has talked to is in love with their vehicle. My only problem is that she will have to get used to straight stick again.
Well, guys and gals there in Baja land.
This is a Scottish connection, where we have just landed a baja 2003 model. It originally started off as a straight machine, but came to us as a repairable driver.
Requires new front end, fenders and bumper bar panel. with a bit of jigging, should pull straight.
Any other baja's known to have crossed the pond yet?
Come back to us and we will post further info as we rebuild!
Enjoy your Scottish Baja! Don't fret too much about the bumpers because if you drive it properly hard in the right places those will be gone again soon anyway. Central America is full of Brats! or Brumbies, as you like, and of course Australia is, as well. But Bajas are just starting to diffuse outside of NoAm. You are on the cutting edge of what will be a slow spread of these uncommon vehicles around the world, and we salute you. Despite the Baja's current death sentence regarding production, I hope we'll be seeing them for decades in all corners of the world. A Baja in Scotland will get some attention, I would imagine, and you will have your way with those great fun, narrow, twisting roads. If you get out of Scotland, drive it by my friends in Chester and northern Wales. Best of luck and enjoy.
I live on Long Island, NY and I'm thinking about getting a Baja and would like to know if anyone has had any experience riding a Baja on sand? How does it handle and has anyone ever gotten stuck?
I am looking to replace a GMC 1 ton pick-up and a small sedan. I don't need to haul big stuff anymore and was wondering if the Baja would haul 2 bales of alfalfa (3 wire bale) or even three. I guess a small utility trailer would also work. How is the rear passenger seating? Is it for 2 or 3 people, and is the legroom cramped? Please explain the boxer engine configuration... is that a horizontally opposed 4 cylinder?
The 24th, called himself a tech, but indeed has no knowledge about subaru vehicles.
Subaru's center differential mechanism is not simply a viscous -coupling, which as some awd car utilized, it actually has the differential, and the coupling acts like merely a lock. So subaru does NOT drive only on its two wheels and totally feels like an AWD.
The Explorer SportTrac, for the guy a few comments back, the new ones have 8.4 inch ground clearance minimum.
I have a 2005 Baja and the bed, while small, has been the the transporter of a vibrating tamper, a rented rototiller, cabinet additions for the kitchen (securely lashed down of course), lumber of many sizes, scads of camping gear, firewood, paving stone, bags of concrete... heck all kinds of stuff.
It's not the workhorse that a full, or even mid-sized, truck is, but the mileage that I've been getting handily beats what I used to get with a truck. And that doesn't even get into the way it ignores snow...
That said, a couple of things could have been done better.
The all-wheel drive is great, but I sure wish it had a low range. Navigating tricky hills on snow or ice is easier when you can slow down and ease through them. And handling prolonged steep grades on forest roads is a pain if you have to stay "at speed" to keep from lugging the engine... and a person with a low range is in front of you. Let me tell you, backing down a mountain side to take another run at the road is tricky!!
The support bars on the bed are fine, but their shape gets in the way of rectangular objects. For example: leaning plywood, or boxed cabinets... They can be worked around, but I sure wish I could have taken them off.
The back seats barely have any leg room if the people in the front have even normal legs. It just limits the ability to use the vehicle for longer trips...
And that's about it.
All said, it's a good blend of car and truck and it has served me well... both on-road and off (for those that argue it shouldn't go there...).
My 03 Baja is at 53,000 miles and has not only served me incredibly well both in town (hauling supplies for my restaurant) but out and about with my kayak, bikes, compost, lumber, trees, whatever I can get into the bed. Mileage averages 27 and have had no work done on it except for rear brakes and rotors. And WITHOUT FAIL, every time I hit a major parking lot, someone stops me and wants to know about the Baja..."I've been thinking about getting one of these, they look pretty useful." From back roads to the SF Opera, this car has surpassed any other I have owned, including Jeep, Volvo, VW, or Ford..