Quite possibly the gayest ute ever devised


A certain MP is probably already on the waiting list for such an incredibly gay ute:

When Nissan engineers Roland Schellenberg and Arnold Moulinet needed a small shop truck for the company’s 3,050-acre technical centre in Stanfield, Arizona, they decided – as engineers are want to do – to build one.

And as engineers relish a good challenge, Schellenberg’s gaze fell upon the least likely candidate for pickup conversion, Nissan’s Leaf electric car. He tasked Moulinet with creating the sketches that, with help from their team of tinkerers, would be come the crimson conversation piece you see here.   

It is known around the tech centre campus as Sparky. To build it, the Arizona team married the bodywork and mechanical bits – including the 107-horsepower electric motor and under-floor lithium-ion battery pack – of a donor Leaf with the inner bed of Nissan’s Frontier compact pickup truck. They narrowed the bed by 10in and cut down the height by 4in, and finished the floor with varnished wooden slats for a retro touch.


I would have thought Tinkerbell would have been more appropriate.

Pete, who drives a Mitsubishi Unicorn, told me that even he wouldn’t drive that ute.

Not even gay men would sit in that. I see socialites with toy poodles or a chihuahua or some other gay dog. It makes no sense, like making a diesel sportscar.

An electric ute?


How do you charge once in the remote back blocks?



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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.

To read Cam’s previous articles click on his name in blue.