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A tuner from Rostov made an all-terrain vehicle from LuAZ-969 with a Niva engine

The Soviet all-terrain vehicle LuAZ-969 with its fancy design remained in the shadows for a long time, not attracting due attention from car enthusiasts. But enthusiasts appreciated the potential of this utility vehicle and began to modernize it to their liking. One of these projects turned the “ugly duckling” into a real off-road beast with extreme body kit and filling.

The ideological inspirer of the project was an ordinary garage craftsman from Rostov-on-Don. The raw material for the upgrade was a 1987 LuAZ without several body panels, a steering wheel, and the engine itself was disassembled.

First of all, the enthusiast revived the car by replacing the original engine with a 1.7-liter 72-horsepower unit from Lada Niva – by the standards of a small all-terrain vehicle, quite serious traction. Then we dealt with the completely failed rear gearbox, restoring its functionality.

The steering also required drastic measures. To replace the jammed stock mechanism, they installed a rack from Volkswagen and an electric booster from Lada Priora. The rest was integrated from Niva, and the transfer case received hard locks. The brakes were completely replaced with disc ones.

Well, the cherry on the cake is 33-inch mud tires with rims. After upgrading the technical stuff, it was time to transform the exterior. The restored and repainted body acquired LED optics, a massive roof guard, wheel arch extensions and an expeditionary roof rack with a ladder. The snorkel on the starboard side provided the all-terrain vehicle with better fording ability.

As a result of modernization, the Soviet “ugly duckling” LuAZ-969 turned into an aggressive all-terrain vehicle for the most extreme travel. This project is an example of how an ordinary enthusiast can change an iconic car beyond recognition, breathing new life into it. (photo:

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