2001 VehiCROSS New Car Test Drive
This seems to be the millennium for wacky cars. Chrysler's PT Cruiser and Pontiac's exceedingly ugly Aztek are so off the wall that they can't be put into traditional categories. Then there are the studies in retro: Volkswagen's Beetle, Ford's Thunderbird, Audi's TT, BMW's Mini.
Isuzu arguably sells the wackiest sport-utility vehicle. Its VehiCROSS looks like something from one of those futuristic cross-country race/gladiator movies.
Clearly, the VehiCROSS wasn't designed for everyone. Some aspects of its design - the very things that make it attractive -- make it awkward to use. But the VehiCROSS does have some redeeming qualities. Its small exterior dimensions hide a surprisingly spacious interior. It handles great, it has lots of power from its smooth, quiet V6, and its sophisticated four-wheel-drive system provides stable cornering on dirt roads. Wacky isn't for everyone. If it was, it wouldn't be wacky anymore.
VehiCROSS continues for 2001 as a three-door sport-utility available in one basic flavor. However, you can also order a special Ironman package with the trademark logo of the famous triathlon emblazoned on the hood, C-pillar and tailgate, and embroidered into the seats and floor mats. The basic VehiCROSS goes for $30,350 while the Ironman adds another $995. Then add $695 for dealer destination charges. The only available options are a $60 cargo mat and a $293 luggage rack.