The Great Beater Challenge 2023 – The Teams

In the last installment I showed the preparation and theme for our car and this time we will see what others have brought to the challenge. The budget is $700 including vehicle price and repair. As note you can spend more and receive penalty points as some teams choose to do. Most embody the spirit if not the budget strictly. Additionally, safety items are exempt which can include big ticket items like tires. There are a few that obviously spent quite a bit more but it is not a hyper competitive event. But where else would you see an off road specification Chevrolet Caprice limousine with a unicorn pool on the roof?

This Ford Aerostar made a return from the 2021 event but now sports an amazing flame paint job. The wing came off a junior drag car.

This 1977 Mercedes Benz 300D had a team name of “Worst Taxi Ever” and sported the popular for this year paint tray in keeping with the theme.

What a great theme choice with this Cannonball Run inspired 1978 Ford E250 Econoline van as the iconic ambulance.

Team “Green Monster II” entered this 1998 Ford Escort station wagon. They went with a reverse mount on their paint tray.

Also green was this rather nice looking MG B. Note the triple windshield wipers which were required for North American sales after November 1968.

The biggest movie of the summer was Barbie and team “Barbie’s Winter Beater” entered a very pink 1999 Chevrolet Cavalier.

This Chevrolet S10 based 1998 Isuzu Hombre is very rare to see in Canada. It came with a neat topper and aftermarket rims.

Peter, the event founder and organizer, brought this 1994 Ford Aspire which is the actual car used on the Corner Gas TV show as Wanda’s car.

Here are a pair of black Dodges with a 1980s D-series RAM pick up and a 1999 Dodge Ram van.

This very Eighties looking scene features either a Chevrolet Camaro with a roof rack or Pontiac Firebird with a Camaro front end and a roof rack.

The biker got all the attention from the ladies. The Honda CB125 with luggage was a bold choice given the distance and mountain passes ahead.

This ratty looking motor home had a surprise …

… a large and very aftermarket sunroof. This team surely had the worst fuel economy on the weekend.

Team “Identity Confused” brought a Golf themed Volkswagen Golf. The asymmetrical paint tray mounting gives it a turbo rally car vibe.

Seinfeld TV show fans will appreciate team “Del Boca Vista Retirement Community” and their 1995 Cadillac DeVille. There was also bonus points from pool noddles in addition to paint trays.

This 1976 Cadillac Eldorado competed last year and returned for team “Dadilac”.

It had many off color humor stickers.

This Chevrolet Bel Air sported a rather glitzy paint tray.

Great Scott! What are the chances? Another Back to the Future team but with a 1990 Pontiac 6000 LE. Team OuttaDime did nice job with the paint trays and pool noodles.

If one hub cap is good then two must be better right? A saved from the scrapyard Chevrolet was so equipped.

Team “Kelly’s Heroes” brought a rather tasty 1995 Land Rover Defender while embracing a military theme.

Team “Ecna Lubma” had some wonderful details on their 1986 Pontiac Acadian (Canadian variant on the Chevrolet Chevette) including a flying pig hood ornament, magnetic letters, Porsche 924 wheels and a comically oversized tow mirror.

Team “Firefox” had to quickly repair their 1989 Volkswagen Fox after an auto-x mishap the weekend before. Good thing the screaming fox hood graphics were unharmed.

Cousin Eddie might have determined that the shitter is full but under the big hood of this 1976 Chevrolet Malibu certainly was not even with a small block V8.

Team “Thundercougarfalconbirds” brought a very serious and capable looking 2006 Ford Crown Victoria.

I was quite taken with this 1957 Monarch Richelieu which is a Canadian variant. The owner of this one had bought it an auction as his father had owned a very similar car in period. He kept it secret while fixing it up and was able to have his father drive the car before he passed. The white letter tires came with the car when he bought it and give it a bit of a vintage race car look.

Yes, it is an event that brings out the most interesting and friendly people.

Was team “vonderk” showing off the engine or checking the oil on this Honda Civic CX? With the Great Beater Challenge it could be either … or both.

As I recall this amazing 1992 Ford Explorer suffered from transmission issues on the 2017 edition but came back to try their luck again. Edit – this was not a repeat but another team that had the same idea and amazing execution.

This Chevrolet Citation was also a returning car but from 2021.

This 1955 Oldsmobile 88 also competed in 2021 and as I remember it he bought the car back in the early 80s for below the required $700 price point. That is how to play the long game and make inflation work for you.

This Chevrolet Malibu is a genuine “Iraqi Taxi” entered by Team MILF. The specification included a 229 cubic inch V6 paired to a three speed manual which was intended for the Iraq market. Only the half the order was fulfilled before the leftovers were sold at fire sale prices in Canada. I wonder where they found those blue wall tires.

Here is one I would love to have for myself; a Suzuki LJ pickup truck. These were sold in Canada in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Here we have Cruella Deville with another one of the several Cadillacs this year. Ironically we had no Cadillacs when the half way point was Cadillac, Saskatchewan in 2022. That was an overview of most (but not all) of the cars participating this year. In the next installment we will hit the road.

The 2023 Great Beater Challenge Series

Back to the Future (and the Challenge) – Vehicle Prep

The Teams

Day One Part One

Day One Part Two

Day Two