My first "real" vehicle was built in a junkyard, and was a VW powered single seat Sand Rail. My total cost in 1980 dollars was $210.00. I sold it to some knothead who killed himself in it a month later, and used the proceeds ($2,100.00) to build my first ugly truckling, a 1976 Datsun King Cab, with a Chevy Luv step side bed, and Jeep underpinnings. Buick V6, and Jeep transmission with transfer case. Finished it, drove it for two months, and a buddy rolled it while I was passed out after my first day of leave after Ranger School.
Seriously, I think that a VW based vehicle is the real answer. All of the "vulnerable" parts can fit into one .50 cal ammo can.
Comments please. I would like someone to shoot some real holes in this concept, because I can't, or I am too sold on the idea.