Members of the Plymouth Sundance/Dodge Shadow K-Platform-based compacts of the early 1990s remain easy to find in self-service junkyards these days, but the larger stretched-K-derivative Plymouth Acclaim/Dodge Spirit isn’t so common. This probably has more to do with quantity sold than reliability, as both types are pretty similar under the skin. Here’s a first-year-of-production Acclaim Turbo, spotted in a Denver self-service yard a couple months ago.
The Taurus-inspired “bar of soap” design philosophy hadn’t caught up with Plymouth’s designers by 1989, though Chrysler would beat Ford at their own game a few years later, with the futuristic-looking LH.
153,632 miles, which is about average for junkyard-dwelling Detroit cars of this era.
You could still get a column-shift automatic on a bucket-seat-equipped midsize sedan in 1989.
The turbocharged 2.5 engine in this car made a fairly decent (for its time) 150 horsepower.
Curb weight on the ’89 Acclaim sedan was just 2,753 pounds (a little less than a 2013 Civic), so 150 horses went a long way.
Futuristic cassette-deck technology!
The white-with-red-tape-stripes scheme looks very fleet-car-ish, but rental-car companies didn’t buy many turbocharged cars back then.
Tina Turner: “You think you have to give up a lot to get Acclaim? Not when it’s a Plymouth!”