Tag: 1980

By on February 20, 2012

We’ve seen a couple of “poor man’s TR8” race cars in the 24 Hours of LeMons: you take a TR7 and drop a junkyard V8 out of a junked Land Rover into it. This works better than both the “really poor man’s TR8″ (a TR7 with Buick V6 swap), in the sense that it sounds a lot cooler, and is (slightly) more reliable than a Triumph Slant Four-powered TR7. Plenty of folks did this swap to their street TR7s as well, and I’ve found an example in a Denver self-service wrecking yard. (Read More…)

By on February 8, 2012

The Malaise Era Celica sold very well in the United States as a fuel-efficient-yet-reasonably-sporty commuter vehicle. They were very reliable (by the not-very-high standards of the time), cheap, and easy to repair. Even so, nearly all of them are gone now, save for a few survivors that hung on long enough to stay out of the junkyards until the second decade of the 21st century. Here’s an ’80 that I found at a Northern California self-serve yard last week. (Read More…)

By on February 7, 2012

The latest crop of Super Bowl car ads boasted some high-production-value salaciousness, but no car advertisement will ever come close to the perfection of the Quaaludes-and-disco Black Gold Man and Black Gold Woman and their gorgeous 10th Anniversary Edition 280ZX. Yes, many of you have seen this ad before, but I will not rest until all have experienced Black Gold (plus I’ve included a few Bonus Sexy Malaise Era car ads after the jump). (Read More…)

By on December 30, 2011

We give GM a hard time over the Citation, but at least the Citation was a big leap into the future compared to the primitive, rear-drive, Opel-designed Chevette. However, it tells us something that more Chevettes than Citations have survived long enough to make it into junkyards in 2011. (Read More…)

By on October 28, 2011

The Cressida was never a big seller in North America, and the second- and third-generation versions make up most of the examples you’ll see these days. First-gen ones like this ’80 I spotted in an Oakland self-service yard on Monday are just about nonexistent… and the number of survivors is about to be reduced by one. (Read More…)

By on September 2, 2011

Back in the Malaise Era, why did anyone buy a Corolla (or an Omni or GLC or any other miserable underpowered econobox) instead of a Civic? Somehow, Soichiro‘s little car managed to be economical, reliable, and fun to drive. Most of the second-gen (1980-83) Civics have long since been crushed, not being as solid as their successors and also not attracting a following of collectors willing to do any sort of restoration, so you don’t see many of them in the junkyards these days. Here’s one that managed to hang on for more than 30 years before taking that final tow-truck ride. (Read More…)

By on January 21, 2011


I moved to Denver over the summer and am now experiencing the joys of proper snow driving for the first time in the 29 years since the State of California saw fit to give me my first driver’s license. With just a ’92 Civic and a ’66 Dodge A100 in my personal motor pool, I figure it’s time for me to start shopping for something with four driven wheels. In fact, I need something that can do four-wheel burnouts on dry asphalt! (Read More…)

By on January 21, 2011


The pickup-truck version of the Volkswagen Rabbit might seem like a terrible idea nowadays, but these things actually turned out to be pretty useful in the real world. You couldn’t haul 1,500 pounds of hog entrails in one, but you couldn’t do that in a Luv, Courier, or 620 either. (Read More…)

By on January 18, 2011


Not many folks remember Mazda’s Chevette competitor, the rear-drive Mazda GLC. OK, it was more of a Toyota Starlet competitor, but there’s a certain Chevette-ness about its lines. I spotted this super-rare machine at a Denver self-service wrecking yard yesterday. (Read More…)

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