There's always something bound to catch my eye while perusing modern-classic car auction website Cars and Bids, but this is the first time something made me stop, melt and go "awwwwww" like I just stumbled into a room with a litter of poodle puppies playing with kittens and whatever you call a baby sloth. I believe the word I'm looking for is "kawaii!!!"
What we have here up for auction is a 1996 Mitsubishi Minicab Fire Truck imported from Japan, which itself is pretty damn cute, but augmented in cuteness by the addition of a custom-made, matching wee boat on a trailer. It's also a manual, because Autoblog.
Apparently, the little guy is an actual functioning fire truck with a light bar, siren, bell and a 650cc two-stroke two-cylinder Shibaura fire pump good for 50 horsepower. That's more than the truck's actual 44-hp three-cylinder engine. The boat is apparently a Tubby Tug outfitted for tiny firefighting with a functioning hose, top-mounted lights, a "big chrome horn" and tiny American flag. It has a four-stroke Mercury motor.
The seller's own page about the pair doesn't really answer the "why" here, though we're guessing it's something the fire department in question brought around to events for children and such. Still, it does provide some addition background on the boat: "(This Tubby Tug) was made by a favorite Grandpa in Poulsbo, Washington. He used to lead the annual season opening regatta with it. It’s amazingly solid and sturdy and well built. The transom has been extended back a foot or so, leaving the outboard in a protected well and giving room around the motor for storage lockers housing the toy fire pumps, battery, and gas tank."
We're hoping this one finds a nice, cute home. Auction bidding ends Feb 18.