The acronym BRAT stands for Bi-drive Recreational All-terrain Transporter.
Drive uncovers more of the historic vehicles stored by Subaru of America, Inc. near its headquarters in New Jersey. Part of the fleet of historic vehicles in the unofficial Subaru museum, these production and concept vehicles are indicative of the innovative nature of Subaru.
Launched in 1977, the Subaru BRAT was designed for the American market and became symbolic of the Subaru brand. The BRAT was developed with the platform and mechanical componentry of a 1977 Subaru station wagon at the rear and the rest of the vehicle built forward from there, fitted with other 1977 Subaru components.
The acronym BRAT stands for Bi-drive Recreational All-terrain Transporter. “Bi-drive” refers to its part-time four-wheel-drive system, which can be shifted in and out of four-wheel drive on-the-fly.
The BRAT’s 1,600-cc engine is a horizontally opposed four-cylinder, mounted longitudinally. The carbureted engine produces 67 horsepower. It was available only with a four-speed manual transmission.
The Subaru BRAT housed in the attic is the first one off the assembly line, and it was driven by Subaru of America co-founder Harvey Lamm.