I’ve never met a Lada guy who wasn’t the epitome of laid-back friendliness. I know a few Lada drivers, and none of them ever take anything motoring-related too seriously. I guess it’s in the blood – it might be some random particles or gas fumes that enter the bloodstream, turning you into the complete opposite of an uptight, overly protective car guy. It’s also probably hereditary, since a lot of Lada drivers drive Ladas because their dad or granddad used to have one.
As I snapped photos of this very green example, the owner appeared, all smiles. “Want a ride?” he asked. I had to decline as I was only going a block away, but chatted for a minute about his excellent choice of ride. “’82 model”, he said, “best winter car ever. Heater control wire came off, had to jam it fully open with a straw from a juice carton. Really have to open up the window after five minutes or it’ll boil you.”
In this post I show you a couple more photos of this green goblin of a Lada, and a couple others of the same kind.
The patina on the bumpers is just great. Contrasts well with the green paint, and the yellow DRL:s suit it well.
Actually, despite the pitted bumpers and mirrors, this Lada is in fairly nice shape overall as there isn’t much rust. The owner said he had just had the car inspected without issue.
Inside, there’s brown cloth and the traditional thin-rimmed steering wheel. Ladas were often improved slightly by the Finnish importer, to iron out some of the build quality issues – and this meant that when Finns were through with a Lada, the car often travelled back east over the border.
You just have to have roof racks for that perfect ’70s Finnish winter look…
…and this high-tech device for removing static electricity is just essential.
There’s also a rust-proof sticker, but after 30 years the Lada’s bound to have some underbody rust. But since it’s inspected, it has to be somewhat solid – especially as the gentlemen holding the inspection hammers are rarely too gentle with old Ladas.
As cold as it was outside, the second Lada featured here was in a cosier spot in the warm garage.
This 1987 1200L is five years newer but looks exactly the same – the only differences apart from the lustrous, fresh-looking red paint being the unmarred chrome and the grille cover.
And yeah, the extremely cool and period-correct zebra seat covers. Also, on the rear door window there’s a Lada-Kerho (Lada Club Finland) sticker.
The Euro-spec plates are slightly ill-fitting, as EU regulations have repeatedly clashed with Lada imports.
Right now, the marque isn’t sold here at all, due to modern Ladas (let alone the still-manufactured RWD 2105) not complying with European Union crashworthiness standards.
To finish this megalomaniacal triple Lada post, here’s a 1988 1200L for sale, in glorious beige. The car yard is asking 1150 EUR for it, with valid inspection until the end of 2012 – so it should be trundling along even after the Mayan-predicted end of the world as we know it (and it’ll feel fine). It looks just as clean as the red one, too.
Which one of these three Ladas is the one for you?