Still For Sale: 1986 UMM Alter II

Over a year after COTC first featured this UMM Alter II it appears to still be for sale here in Plaistow, New Hampsire.

I had never heard of this thing before I found it the wilds of craigslist. But I'm sure glad I did because it's pretty cool.

UMM (which stands for Uniao Metalo-Mecanica) is a Portugese truck manufacturer, and the Alter was standard-issue their all-terrain passenger vehicle. The "II" denotes this being a second generation Alter, and follows a long line of 4x4 vehicles. It brought about a new transmission, transfer case and suspension.

Styling-wise, this is a pretty sweet looking ride. It's sort of a combination between the Mercedes-Benz Galendenwagen, Toyota FJ-cruiser, and Land Rover Defender. All hard angles and utilitarian details. The steeply slanted hood, square headlights and triple windshield wipers add unique touches.

It helps this one is in black, always a good color. The white steel wheels are correct and the front guard bars and rear mud flaps finish the rugged look. It's definitely not lacking. I also like the two-door configuration, adding to the quirk factor.

Inside is definitely not lacking for space, with two seats up front and side benches in the rear. The instrument cluster is refreshingly spartan, although the plastics all look worn and faded, including the Peugeot steering wheel and tired foot well. The center console also seems to be missing a few things, although again given the simplicity of the rest of the dashboard it's hard to tell exactly.

As the steering wheel implies, underneath the hood is a Peugeot 2.0-liter 4-cylinder gasoline engine. It's not the most desirable engine the UMM came with, but it will get the job done and shouldn't be too bad servicing and fixing, with Peugeot parts readily available in Europe.

Unfortunately the seller doesn't give any indication things are working or not. Just from the photos the cosmetic condition seems about fair, and that's without even seeing the underside, which might hide extensive rust. The odometer reads 19,342 but that's probably in kilometers so the mileage would be about 11,809, if the reading is functioning and accurate.

Despite that, it's an extremely rare vehicle for a US dealer to be selling and overall seems worth getting cleaned, detailed and properly sorted so it can be used and brought to auto clubs.

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