Curbside Outtake: Time For A Saturday Morning Cartoon

mitsubishi express  mystery machine (1)

It looks like Scooby-Doo and the gang moved down under, and still have an affinity for forward-control vans. The long-lived Mitsubishi Express was one of the first cars I ever wrote about, and they remain ubiquitous on account of their extremely lengthy production run. Usually they are painted white, but this camper van was given a lurid Mystery Machine paint job. Companies like Wicked Campers decorate their vans with all kinds of wacky color schemes and artwork, but this is the first Mystery Machine I’ve ever seen.

mitsubishi express  mystery machine (3)

There’s an oft-repeated joke that the “fog” surrounding the gang’s van in the old cartoons was actually clouds of weed smoke. After all, didn’t Shaggy seem like the archetypal stoner to you? I have no doubt that camper vans like this “Mystery Machine” have seen plenty of recreational drug use, particularly when European backpackers take them down to Byron Bay for music festivals.

mitsubishi express  mystery machine (2)

Passenger versions of these Express vans wore the very hippy-esque name “Starwagon”. Frankly, I’d be disappointed if I went to rent a camper van and got one of these horrid vans. Most of the camper vans you see are infinitely nicer JDM Toyota Estimas, and I think one of those would be a much nicer choice for Scooby and Friends.

An Estima would be a much safer choice, too.