As of last weekend, here's her new look. The grille is a modified '99 Lighting piece. I added a skid plate from a Revell Wrangler Rubicon and built a new front bumper with recessed lights and an exposed winch fairlead. I used some tube steps from the Harley edition, and tinted the side and rear windows.
T-tops were supposed to be a way around rollover standards- you could have the open air feel of a ragtop with (at least some of) the protection of a full roof. They were a bit of a Band-Aid solution to structural rigidity problems- the T-bar was a structural component. Nowadays, there are better ways to stiffen the body structure so a full convertible or even a targa roof is a better idea. That and the less tangible thing, being that when you say "t-top", things like "mullets" and "jean shorts" also come to mind.
My idea seems somewhat tame compared to some of the other things being done with this kit. Basically, I'll be doing a single cab pickup conversion by cutting down the top, and making the mechanicals a bit more realistic by swapping in some doodads from a Revell Beetle (old kit, not the RoG '68/'70 version from a few years ago). Actually... I've already done some of those things...
The plan is for power to come from a (possibly turbocharged) Corvair pancake six- this one came from the AMT parts pack. Not sure if I'll use the factory VW steel wheels and slicks on the back, but I am kind of leaning toward using a stock-ish VW wheel of some sort.
The original kit (the one reissued by RC2 about a decade ago) was originally a '76. Going by the grille in the reissue it's now a '78 or '79. There were two other versions- an Off Road version with a lift, bigger tires, and a custom exhaust, and it was based on the regular Scout II. There was also a kit of the open-top SSII, which had it's own grille, bucket seats, and door cutouts. The body and interior tub were unique to that version. The latter two have never been reissued. At one time Time Machine Resin repopped the SSII, but as far as I know they aren't casting anymore. They're crude kits compared to the Ertl IH heavy truck/tractor kits, and had quite a few accuracy problems, but still very buildable. Keith Marks does a couple of different factory-type stripe decals for them.