Wisconsin is also full of industrious, hard working people, noted for their ability to find creative solutions to vexing problems. Problems such as creating the perfect vehicle for facilitating a popular Wisconsin pastime: ice fishing.
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the AMC Ice Fishing Car.
The mind which created this masterpiece could have started with any 4-wheel drive vehicle but it is fitting that he chose one from Wisconsin’s own American Motors. AMC’s Eagle line was developed off the old Hornet platform and was a fairly successful transformation of that archaic chassis. Today, 4-wheel drive passenger cars seem like a no-brainer but when the Eagle was introduced back in 1980 a buyer looking for a 4×4 that wasn’t a truck didn’t have many choices.
Recently, while I was searching for a used 4×4 with which to face a predicted harsher-than-normal winter here in the midwest, I ran across this little gem on ebay. The picture of a pretty decent looking 1983 AMC Eagle sedan caught my eye but when I read in the description the words “ice fishing car, runs great, all wheel drive, good body, fish or restore, drives” my first thought was that the seller was making light of the car’s rusted floor boards.
In fact, the floor boards were probably pretty solid when a previous owner took a Sawzall to them to create the ultimate winter Bass Buggy. After removing the front passenger seat, our hobbyist cut nice round holes in each of the rear foot wells and then fastened a kind of jig where the front seat used to be. All that’s missing is an accommodation for a beer cooler, though I suppose one could just set a couple of six packs out on the ice.
(The idea of driving your car out onto a frozen lake is probably quite alien, if not downright horrifying, to readers from warmer climes but it’s all part of the Wisconsin experience. My father was an avid fisherman and refused to take a break from the sport during the winter. On many a Saturday or Sunday afternoon he would load his family and his gear into our 1959 Rambler American station wagon and head out onto the ice on Whitewater Lake. He fished while we skated.)
Oddly, the ebay listing expired without anyone snapping it up but with any luck the seller will cast his line out again and snag a buyer for this most unique project car.