- The Bring a Trailer auction site is currently listing this 1965 International Harvester Scout 80, product of a 2753-hour restoration process.
- This Scout is an example of the Champagne Series, which was introduced for 1964 and included luxuries such as vinyl bucket seats and a removable hard top.
- Bidding ends on Monday, December 6, and as of this writing bids are already above $12,000 and sure to go much higher.
The notion of what constitutes a luxurious SUV has certainly changed over time, as is starkly illustrated by this beautifully restored 1965 International Harvester Scout 80 currently up for auction on Bring a Trailer.
Commenters on the auction website are losing their minds over the painstaking level of detail in the restoration of this Scout, which is said to have been a 2753-hour endeavor. The build was chronicled by the owner/restorer in a 76-page series of posts on the International Harvester fan site binderplanet.com.
The restoration is truly impressive, but an additional element that makes this Scout stand out is that it's a Champagne Series model. Introduced for 1964, the Champagne Series featured the Doll Up interior trim (yes, really) with such luxuries as carpeting, a headliner, a driver's-side sun visor, a dash pad, embossed vinyl door panels, vinyl bucket seats, sound deadening, and chrome-plated control knobs. The dash and steering wheel were painted to match the champagne-colored upholstery. Talk about puttin' on the ritz.
This Scout also boasts a Travel Top, which is a removable fiberglass hard top, plus a rear bench seat, full wheel covers, and an AM radio. Power is by a Comanche four-cylinder engine, originally 152 cubic inches, now rebuilt and bored over. (A turbo was also offered.) The gearbox is a three-speed manual with a Warn overdrive. This Scout also features four-wheel drive with a two-speed transfer case controlled by a pair of floor shifters, a Power-Lok rear differential, and twin fuel tanks.
At this writing with five days to go before the December 6 deadline, bidding stands at $12,250 but is sure to go much higher. Previous Scouts on BaT have brought as much as six figures, although those were all heavily modded trucks. We find this faithfully restored Scout far more intoxicating. As Robin Leach used to say, "Champagne wishes and caviar dreams."