Wheels are like a pizza: they’re round and you don’t want the cheapest you can afford. Plus, more equals better, which is why the 1985 Chevrolet Astro Pickup Truck with Tandem Rear Axle for sale on Craigslist is perfect for transforming into anything you can imagine.
On sale on craigslist in Cave Creek, Arizona, this Chevy is said to have had a “proper custom stretch done right” to fit a second tandem rear axle. It’s unclear why the builder had it installed, as the project is far from complete despite the seller claiming “hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars invested”. Of course, the van, which would have a rolling shape, makes it a decent canvas for any number of builds that could use its extra wheels.
In theory, a tandem axle offers two big advantages: greater load capacity and greater traction. That makes this minivan capable of accommodating a heck of a rear RV setup, complete with deep-cycle batteries to go off-grid with your devices. Of course, that would be easier with more than just the advertised rear-wheel drive, so one could retrofit the all-wheel-drive from a newer Astro, if not find a way to power all three axles and build a 6×6 pickup truck . From there it would be a mere lift away from a beautiful backcountry camper.
Of course, with all-wheel drive, you could take it down the road to asphalt performance. Ideally, that would start by swapping out that old 4.3-liter V6 for any GM V8, and while you’re at it, upgrade the four-speed automatic (indicated present by the column shifter). That, and a turbo or two, could benefit from the included tow package, though any given diesel would work well in that role as well.
No matter what you have in mind, this project is obviously far from over. Its interior is still a long way off, its body needs a block sanding, and there’s a distinct lack of mention of whether the thing works. But if its frame looks good on a lift, there are far worse ways to spend $3,750 – think how little Dodge Challenger that would buy.
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