The 1980s blew like a hurricane. A period of excess and excitement. The world went crazy for new technology and electronics, and automakers from all over the world boarded. Their work has become more complex and, as a result, faster. The mighty Audi with his quattro sport gaining steam and the gorgeous Ferrari F40 becoming the ultimate dream supercar.
An eternal legend was born. A vehicle that was instantly loved and placed on a golden throne. But in the turmoil of the 1980s, when the lucky cars rose to Hollywood movie stardom, the less fortunate ones came and went without warning. A car that was great but didn’t get the praise it deserved.
Looking back, there are now many gems of famous cars. Individual machines that were special but mostly ignored. These are his 10 most underrated cars of the 1980s.
Ten Buick GNX
Buick Grand National Experimental. A car ahead of its time. Ballistically fast, his GNX can drive the Italian supercar into cover. Buick said it produced 275 horsepower. In reality, this figure is over his 300 horsepower, suggesting why he hits 60 mph in 4.9 seconds.
The turbocharged 3.8 V6 engine was a behemoth of power across the rev range, but the Buick GNX chassis could overwhelm. Its handling is not as sharp as it used to be. Known for its poor interior quality, the GNX is now a very popular collectible.
9 renault fuego turbo diesel
In the 1980s, diesel engines were unpopular and unfashionable. That’s why Renault broke new ground by equipping the sleek-looking coupe with oil-his burners. His 2.0-liter turbocharged engine produced 87 horsepower and a healthy 133 lb-ft of torque, making it the fastest diesel on the market.
Accelerate to 60 mph in 10 seconds. The Fuego Diesel was an impressive coupe. It handled well and pulled like a train. But the very concept of a sporty diesel was absurd at the time. Fuego in particular could be purchased with a traditional gasoline turbo engine.
8 Ford Mustang SVO
Even legends have bad days. In the 1980s, the Ford Mustang was in rough trouble. Incorporating new technology, it is equipped with a small-displacement turbo engine. Devout muscle car fans were reluctant to take it. Despite the benefits.
Lighter than V8. 200 horsepower with a 2.3 liter unit. Only 5 horsepower less than the Bent Eight. Acceleration was the same. But when it came to handling, it was much better. He responded well in the corners and dominated the line-up. But Ford fans didn’t accept it as a true muscle car.
7 Subaru Justy
Compact, economical, and go-anywhere, the Subaru Justy was the donkey of the car world. A hard working little car that is as tough as an old boot. It wasn’t fast or fancy, but the Subaru Justy was able to go places most people believed impossible.
A favorite tool of farmers and back road runners, the Subaru Justy can be counted on anytime, in any weather – rain, snow, mud or sand. Thanks to the low-ratio gearbox, the Subaru Justy’s soldier moves without problems. Its basic nature, almost unstoppable, was the key.
6 saab 900 turbo 16s
A 2.0-liter turbocharged 16-valve engine, front-wheel drive, and room for more family are the recipes that dozens of modern hot hatches use to instant success. But back in the 1980s, it broke new ground and set benchmarks. What SAAB has done more than ever before.
The 900 16S spit out 175 horsepower. It could fire to 60 mph in 7.3 seconds and packed impressive safety and engineering features into the roof lining. Boasting high build quality. Reliability was an order of magnitude. The 900 Turbo 16S was ultimately let down by its lack of styling flair.
Five Lancia Delta HF 4X4
A compact turbocharged hatchback with all-wheel drive. The Lancia Delta HF was a square-jawed beauty with his 2.0-liter 8-valve engine producing 165 horsepower. Offline, you can sprint to 60 mph in 7.8 seconds. Sure, the Delta HF 4X4 was a great hot hatch.
Lancia has never been known for reliability, and Delta was no exception. Capricious and fragile. It was unfortunate that many buyers regretted their purchases. In action, the Delta HF 4X4 delivered an excellent level of performance in true Italian style.
Four Jeep Cherokee (2nd generation)
It was in business decades before the SUV was the vehicle of choice while offering a decent level of performance, plenty of practicality, and true off-road capability. It has been thought It existed and was used, but it was never really praised for being great.
Rough, rugged or extravagantly equipped, the second-generation Cherokee could have its hands on just about anything. Powered by a durable 177 horsepower 4.0-liter straight-six engine, it had everything you could want in a family car.
3 pontiac fiero
In later years, the Pontiac Fiero would go on to sell 100 replica cars. But before it became the ideal platform for change, it was a decent sports car in its own right: an affordable two-seater of his that offered decent fuel economy and plenty of panache.
Early cars were severely underpowered, alienating buyers. Later cars were much improved, he got a decent 140 horsepower 2.8 liter V6. Acceleration is competitive, with the Fiero hitting 60 mph in his 8.3 seconds. Handling was rated as best in class.
2 Chrysler Conquest TSI
Mitsubishi’s rebranded Chrysler Conquest was more than a borrowed idea. It was a gateway taster vehicle to taste the wonders of his JDM, a collection of sophisticated parts. The Conquest TSI has an underrated sense of style and looks better today than ever before.
The responsive 2.6-liter turbocharged engine develops 188 horsepower. Drop the throttle and you see 60 mph in 8.3 seconds. The beauty of Conquest was always having more power to choose from. Tunable and highly modifiable, speeding up is only part of the ownership.
1 Toyota Supra A60
Long before the Supra sprouted factory-installed turbos and became a road-going beast, it had a fine-tuned 2.8-liter straight-six engine that delivered ample 160 horsepower to the driver. The second-generation Toyota Supra is both a grand tourer and a sophisticated sports car.
The A60 Supra is a quintessentially square Japanese design with pop-up headlights, taking the best and brightest from Europe and America. Mechanically robust and well-equipped for its time, this car was a great but rising star lost to more prestige brands.
Source: Parkers, Ultimatespecs