It was impossible to escape the word “Turbo” in the 1980s.
There were Turbo Aviators and Turbo Hoover vacuums. Turbo was a character on American Gladiators. There was even Turbo chewing gum, which came with a cool mini car poster wrapper. Turbo was a helluva drug in the 1980s, and Chrysler took note.
BMW offered one turbocharged gasoline model. Porsche offered three. But Chrysler? Over a 10 year span, the Pentastar turbocharged its entire car lineup, bringing us some 20 turbocharged models powered by no less than six different variations of the 2.2- and 2.5-liter inline-fours.
After the near-miraculous success of the K platform dug Chrysler out of the pit of its near-bankruptcy and controversial government bailout (no, not that bailout, the earlier one), Lee Iacocca led the company to produce a bewildering number of vehicles based on the K. Chrysler had some sporty machinery based on the Simca-derived Omnirizon (not to mention some hot rebadged Mitsubishis), but the Dodge Daytona and its Chrysler Laser sibling were the bread-and-butter factory hot rods of the 1980s and a bit beyond.
Here’s an ’85 I spotted at a now-defunct Los Angeles-area yard a while back. (Read More…)
Other than the AC/Shelby Cobra, which has been ineptly reproduced in horrifying bulk by various people up to and including Carroll Shelby, and Bentley, which for the past decade has been the unwitting target of a sustained global counterfeiting operation in which Volkswagen Phaetons are refitted with welded-up pairs of turbochaged VR6es and cross-eyed Kia Amanti front ends to make so-called “Flying Spurs”, no major automaker has been the subject of so much fakery as Ferrari. It’s not always as simple as Mister Twos pretending to be 360 Spyders. Some of the most controversial “fake Ferraris” started their lives as real Ferraris.
Now, a prominent Ferrari broker (and faker) says that the company is taking steps to prevent the sale of fake Ferraris, even (or perhaps especially) ones that originally hail from Maranello.
We’ll continue on our Turbo Era junkyard tour, which kicked off yesterday with a 50th Anniversary Edition Nissan 300ZX Turbo, with one of the many Chrysler K-platform-based products to benefit from Turbo Era technology: this 1990 Dodge Daytona Turbo. (Read More…)
Remember the rear-window louver craze? Thanks to the large numbers of Daytonas and Lasers that clung to life long enough to enter junkyards in this second decade of the 21st century, we can relive the Louver Era! (Read More…)
The Reatta we saw in the junkyard yesterday was a pretty rare car (though not so rare as its Hyundai Scoupe neighbor), but California self-service junkyards tend to be full of such jewels. Here’s a long-forgotten, one-of-250-built Mopar that makes those two seem commonplace. (Read More…)