Car of the Year Revisionism, 1976 Edition: If Not the Volare/Aspen, What?
We went all 20/20 hindsight on the 1970 Motor Trend COTY choice yesterday, and today we’ll be jumping right into the depths of the Malaise Era for the MT gurus’ 1976 choice: the Dodge Aspen/ Plymouth Volaré
The Volaré and Aspen were the successors to the successful-but-aging-poorly A-Body compacts, the Dodge Dart and Plymouth Valiant (though the Dart and Valiant were available along with the Volaré and Aspen for the 1976 model year). The new Mopar compacts had reasonably modern chassis and suspension design, but the styling was frumpy and they were far thirstier than the Dodge- and Plymouth-badged Simca and Mitsubishi captive imports. Car of the Year material, or not? For the sake of [s]flame wars[/s] argument, we’ll include imports (for reference, the Toyota Celica Liftback won MT‘s Import Car of the Year award in ’76). What’s it going to be? The hot-selling ’76 Cutlass Supreme, with its perfect-for-the-time styling? The Pucci Edition Lincoln Mark IV? The Plymouth Arrow? Discuss.
Image source: Old Car Brochures
Acuraandy on Dec 10, 2011
My parents when I was a growing up had a s#!t brown on tan 1978 Volare 4 door sedan with Slant-Sick. I distinctly remember driving from the Twin Cities to Willmar, MN one autumn afternoon and hitting Litchfield. Wheel bearing decided to take a s#!t. Took out the knuckle, spindle and bearing; wheel damn near fell off. With that said, i'd rather put my kids in that than ANY Camcord. And this is as a current owner of one. :)
And003 on Feb 18, 2013
My grandmother once owned a 1979 Dodge Aspen sedan. It proved to be troublesome at times. Sometimes it wouldn't start during the cold, and at one time it stalled out on me when I was at a traffic light ... on a rainy day. When it came time for me to go to college, she and my father had to get me a Chevy Cavalier. Still, I have a fondness for the coupe versions of the Aspen and Volare, particularly the R/T and Road Runner variants. With the technology of today, access to a professional hot rod shop, and the necessary financing, I could easily see myself transforming a Volare Road Runner or Aspen R/T into a high-performance restomod. :)
Latest Car ReviewsRead more
Latest Product ReviewsRead more
- EBFlex "EBFlex speaks more truth."It's sometimes a burden being right all the time.
- MRF 95 T-Bird Add a couple of more body styles. A coupe with a vestigial rear seat like the BRZ along with a shooting brake version would appeal to a number of drivers who want something sporty but not a hatchback or crossover.
- Theflyersfan It's the mother of all "ifs" - if Mazda gets the small rotary/hybrid combo going, I can see them using that in the next MX-5. Can they keep it under 2500 lbs and somewhat affordable? Not sure...this is why I don't run a car company! But if they want to replace it around 2025, and it's 2023 now, they need to get started very soon with some rumors and leaks to keep us going. But with the rest of their lineup going greener in next generations, and Mazda selling under 10,000 MX-5s per year, how does it really impact any average emissions and fuel economy ratings? If they can keep tweaking the Skyactiv-G engine for better fuel economy and fewer emissions, they should be able to get the NE generation using gasoline before being forced to go EV or hybrid with the NF. The mission of the MX-5 is light, affordable, open air fun and it's their halo car. And while I agree that EVs are going to be a much larger part of the future, the "all things by 2035 or 2040 or so on" edicts have "kick the can down the road" written in massive font size 1,000 written all over them. We'll be on gas for a while longer - just continue to eke more mpg out of what we have.All that being said, if they were to put the turbo Skyactiv-G engine in the MX-5 for 2024 and make it a Mazdaspeed model, I'd put a deposit on it right now. I love mine, but if it gets bumped up from 181hp to 250-275hp, it would be a flat out riot to drive.
- Dot65699986 Making money online is more than $15k just by doing simple work from home. I received $18376 last month. It's an easy and simple job to do and its earnings are much better than regular office jobs and even a little child can do this and earn money. Everybody must try this job by just use the info on this page..... 𝐖𝐰𝐰.𝐰𝐨𝐫𝐤𝐬𝐭𝐚𝐫𝟐𝟒.𝐜𝐨𝐦
- Tassos extinct. It is a mickey mouse vehicle -toy that was always extinct for me. Its current interior room is fit only for small females. No wonder it is very popular with chicks. An Adult male can fit in, but can';t comfortably stretch on a longer trip, not to mention the non-existing trunk. The stupid car does not even have room for a young couple and their weekend luggage. So, it's JUST A TOY. When you grow up, you want something much more than a DAMNED TOY. Zoom-zoom?