Ten Sports Cars That Helped To Define 1980s Automobile Style
It is a boxy car with lots of Italian leather seats. The 1980s sports car look is well-known. Although the 1980s' sports car design evolved into more curvy shapes in the 1990s, it still stands out today thanks to its futuristic design and robust performance features such as strong horsepower.
In the 1980s, international vehicle imports outsold U.S. producers. Many performance models of the decade were rooted in clay and pencil designs. Computers would soon be able to create almost any aerodynamic shape that man could imagine.
Contrast the overstated and poster-ready 1980s sports cars with the subtle sophistication of 1960s sports cars such as the Jaguar XKE. While you may sometimes question the quality of certain 1980s iconic vehicles, it is not impossible to deny their ability to turn heads.
We are here to pay homage to the 1980s sports cars, whose legends live on.
What is the Renault Alpine GTA's Difference from its Competition?
The Renault Alpine Grand Tourisme Alpine (GTA) is a French coupe from the 1980s. Renault's goal was to pass Porsche with a sporty design that contained healthy amounts of practicality--something that was not often prioritized during this decade. This effort culminated in a sports coupe that is a tribute to the spirit of French engineering. This atypical French engineering approach can be found in modern sports cars such as the Bugatti Veyron.
What is the Import History of The Renault Alpine GTA?
The Renault Alpine GTA, a rare car that was first produced in 1984, was sold between 1984 and 1991. Every year in the 8-year history of this car can be imported. These are the most popular models in this lineup's turbo models. This car was almost integrated into the U.S. by Renault. Domestic Market (USDM), inventory before Renault pulled out of the market in 1987 after Chrysler bought its share in AMC. Only 12 GTAs with federalization were left in the U.S.
The USDM Renault Alpine GTA had distinctive bumpers and classic 1980s pop-up lights. With Renault's F1 team changing its name to Alpine racing, we are confident that the Renault Alpine GTA can continue its legacy.
Why is the Renault Alpine GTA so aerodynamic?
When it first appeared on the automotive market in the 1980s, the Renault Alpine GTA was considered the most aerodynamic car on the market. It featured multiple design elements that demonstrated its aerodynamic capabilities. The intelligently designed nose is partly responsible for the sports coupe's remarkable low drag resistance. The Renault Alpine GTA's lightweight design was also a benefit. It was several hundred pounds lighter than other competitors.
What Renault Alpine GTA Engine Options are Available?
1980s drivers had the option of choosing between two Renault Alpine GTA engines. The first was a 2.9-liter carbureted V6 that produced 158 horsepower. The other was a 2.5 liter turbocharged V6 that sent 197 horsepower to rear wheels via a 5-speed manual transmission. The coupe featured a steel backbone chassis and outriggers, as well as a body made of glass fiber panels and plastic. The Renault Alpine GTA was inspired by the Alpine A110's sloped roofline and square-shaped headlights.
Does the Renault GTA Alpine's interior reflect 80s sports car style?
The interior of the Renault Alpine GTA is filled with a surprising amount of switchgear, leather seating with cushy headrests, and rear seats that can be used as storage. Two speakers are a highlight of the Renault Alpine GTA's rear.
We felt it necessary, to begin with, a 1980s sports car that collectors still long for.
What kind of cultural impact has the Mazda RX-7 (FC), made?
RX is a Mazda classic that had its greatest impact with the RX-7. Mazda RX-7 has been featured on cultural hits such as Fast and Furious and Need for Speed.
How did the RX-7 kick off its 1980s run?
From 1981-to 1983, Mazda made the Series 2 RX-7. The Mazda Series 2 RX-7 features attractive exterior design elements such as wrap-around taillights, wide rubber body side moldings, and black rubber body sides. The four-speed manual transmission was no longer available on this model. There are now 5-speed manual or automatic transmission options. The Series 2 RX-7GSL package included four-wheel disc brakes. Power levels increased by around ten horsepower.
This Series' RX-7 Turbo produced 160 horsepower at 6,500 RPM. The Series 3 RX-7 introduced its 135 horsepower, 1.3-liter fuel injected engine. This was the beginning of a rise in standard horsepower.
What did the RX-7 do to alter its direction in the mid-1980s?
With its Series 4 lineup, the RX-7 began to drift towards 1985's sport-tourer style. The exterior design of this Series was heavily influenced by Porsche's 924/944 and 944, so it could appeal more to U.S. customers.
The Series 4 RX-7 was enhanced by an independent rear suspension that allowed for lower levels of understeer. A new rack-and-pinion steering design also made it more precise.
What Was the RX-7 Performance in the Late 1980s?
You can confidently cruise in a Series 5 RX-7 from the late 1980s with a 160 horsepower engine. In some cases, a turbo engine could produce up to 215 horsepower. The 10th Anniversary RX-7 was known for its style. The 10th Anniversary RX-7 stood out with its black leather interior, bronze-tinted windows, and special 10th Anniversary floormats.
The RX-7 ended its strong 1980s run together with the GTU. This model was identical to the Turbo RX-7's four-piston front brakes and speed-sensing, power steering. It also featured luxury interior features such as a leather-wrapped steering column. In 1989, only 1,100 GTUs were produced.
Why is Lotus Excel so forgotten in North America?
It's one thing to be an underdog, but it's quite another to be near forgotten. Because of the high emission regulations that plagued Ferrari and its USDM's, Lotus Excel was not allowed to be imported to the United States. We want to give it credit. With its stunning exterior, outstanding suspension, and reliable engines, this Lotus GT model is one of the most distinctive from 1980.
What was Lotus' Vision for Excel?
The introductory Lotus Excel was a front-engined, rear-wheel-drive vehicle. Its near-perfect 50/50 weight distribution made it a big hit in 1982. The Lotus Excel, like many other sports cars in this decade's decade, was designed to produce a vehicle that looks good and performs equally well.
Thanks to a partnership between Toyota and Lotus, Excel was created by Lotus as a successor for the Eclat. The fruitful partnership saw Lotus use many of Toyota's components in Excel, which resulted in a lower price but not sacrificing quality. Lotus distinguished Excel from its Eclat counterparts by using larger taillights and a large, big-wing spoiler. Excel's most powerful engine was introduced in the mid-1980s. It provided 180 horsepower and high cornering performance that easily surpassed the competition.
The 1980s Lotus is a shining example of the 1980s' sports design spirit with its wide nose and smooth body. The Lotus Excel's interior featured luxurious upholstery, a low-set driving height, and a three-spoke steering column. The Excel was equipped with coil springs, telescopic shock absorbers, and steering wheel switches that allowed for a planted ground position.
Which Lotus Excel is the Most Valuable to Vintage Collectors?
Collectors love the 1984 Lotus Excel, which features flared wheel arches. These sleek-looking GT models are just a fraction of the total number produced.
What kind of first impression did the 1985 Chevy Camaro IIROC-Z make?
Chevy's IROC-Z Camaro was named to Car and Driver's Ten Best List for 1985. The IROC-Z was attractive to potential buyers due to its sporty exterior design and outstanding handling. The Camaro's 5.0-liter 215 horsepower engine and seven-second 0-60 mph acceleration made it a huge success. This performance specification allowed for numerous modifications to the driver that resulted in tons of drag racing.
What were the most significant changes made by this Camaro?
The 1980s IROC-Z is able to look and feel like a 1980s sports car with an anti-roll bar and front frame rail reinforcement. The Camaro's amazing addition, the Z/28, was an upgrade with its 16-inch wheels and spine decal package. Although 16-inch wheels might seem small, they were almost unheard of when the IROC-Z arrived on the scene in. The 1980s.
The previous Camaro speedometers had a double-pointed needle that measured mph or km/h. Chevy changed the speedometer on the IROC-Z to a single-pointed 85-mph design. Additional modifications included a new nose, integration of a spoiler that looked mean, deeper valances, and halogen fog lamps. The IROC-Z was made lower by 5 inches and was available in five colors. California residents were the only ones who could purchase an RPO California IROC-Z. Chevy produced 500 total RPO California IROCZ models--250 in red and 250 in black.
Chevy was clearly breaking new ground with the IROC-Z. GM experimented with many new manufacturing techniques, which resulted in new design elements such as a 62-degree sloped windshield. This was the steepest Chevy had ever made. This automotive innovation was available to drivers for $659 less than the original Z/28.
Are these Camaro's good investments?
This 1980s classic Camaro is a great investment. IROC-Z Camaros in good condition can be sold for up to $30,000. It can be difficult to find IROCZ Camaros that aren't worn out. Previous street racing sessions. The majority of IROC-Z's cost approximately $11,000 with some being as low as $3,000
What was the Big Ferrari Problem that Testarossa solved?
The Testarossa, a Ferrari model, was basically a larger, more comfortable version of its predecessor, the Berlinetta Boxer. To address the hot cabin of the Berlinetta Boxer, the Italian manufacturer increased the Testarossa. The car's radiator at the front caused the interior to heat up. The Testarossa was also able to provide decent-sized front storage for passengers with this new cooling system.
Was the Testarossa Drive as Good As It Looks?
The Testarossa was powered by a dry-sump, 4.9-liter flat-12 engine with 361 horsepower and 361 lb-ft of torque. It reached a top speed around 180 mph and 0-60 mph in just under five seconds. To further enhance driving dynamics, 1988 Testarossa models were equipped with nice-sized 16-inch wheels.
How did the Testarossa embody the spirit of the 1980s
The original 1980s supercar quickly became mainstream thanks to its exposure on Miami Vice. The Testarossa's dramatic side profile helped communicate the 1980s style of excess and glam, while also serving practical purposes. The car's rear was given more stability by the cheese grater sides. They also cool the engine. These innovative design elements are the driving force behind Testarossa’s increasing value.
The rear wheels of the Testarossa were powered by a rear-mounted five-speed manual transmission with a twin-plate clutch. This Ferrari cruised past its competition thanks to its complete disc brake setup, precise rack-and-pinion steering, and lightweight tubular steel unframed.
Although black is a great choice for this Ferrari, many will agree that Testarossa prefers red. This is a widely held opinion, as Testarossa means "redhead" in Italian. You'll find a luxurious tan leather interior, a Ferrari gated shifter, and surprising amounts of space when you get behind the wheel.
The Ferarri Testarossa, true to its times, is a masterpiece in how an auto manufacturer can balance function and form.
What does the name Countach represent in driving?
It was inevitable. It made its debut at the 1971 Geneva Motor Show. In 1974 it hit the streets. The Countach experienced a steady evolution through the 1980s, which solidified its premier status. It is no surprise that the name Countach loosely translates to "wow!" Lamborghini set out to create the most stunning car ever built and the Countach's futuristic, abstract design was the result.
You can turn the clock back to 1979 and find Lamborghini Countach upgrades, including new low-profile Pirelli P7s, longer glass-fiber wheel arches, and a more aggressive exterior design. For the first time, the Countach's V-shaped rear wing was available in the LP400S lineup. This allowed drivers to enjoy increased stability at high speeds.
The LP400S was a slower Countach due to its greater drag. This resulted in a 353-horsepower output. Lamborghini improved the Countach's performance in 1982 by increasing its V12 to a 475cc. The Countach's performance was further enhanced by the 5000QV models, which featured a 5157CC engine with four valves per cylinder. This engine produced 455 horsepower as well as 369 lb-ft torque. The 5000QV's American counterparts had 420 horsepower. A 5000QV can go from 0-60 mph in under 5 seconds, and top speeds of more than 165 mph in a matter of minutes.
After its Anniversary Edition, which ran from 1988-1990, Lamborghini has retired the Countach. With the engine and brake overheating improvements, the Anniversary Edition Countach was a success. It also featured a more driver-friendly cockpit with adjustable seats and power windows.
How did the Lamborghini Countach compete with its market rivals?
The Countach was more than just a fast car. This Lamborghini was able to outperform rival models such as the Porsche 911 Turbo, Aston Martin Vantage, and Ferrari Testarossa with its precise steering, excellent traction, and precise balance.
The essence of street-legal racing prowess is embodied in an aluminum body that's mounted on a tubular frame. The only problem with this Lamborghini was its poor visibility during parking. According to drivers, the best way to park a Countach in a garage is to open the scissor doors, lean half-out, keep an eye on the rear, and carefully work the pedals. The 1980 U.S. automotive regulations that were imposed on the Countach didn't just apply to its performance. For added safety, the U.S.-made Lamborghini incorporates bumpers in its design. These bumpers were ugly and unnecessary, to say the least. These negatives have not had a significant impact on the Countach’s legacy.
What kind of first impression did the BMW M3 E30 make?
The BMW M3 E30's immediate success was largely due to its Motorsport inspiration. BMW wanted to create a racing sedan that could be driven in a street-legal manner for the M3 E30. BMW Racing Parts was the perfect choice to build their first model. 1986 saw the introduction of the M3 E30's ABS brake system, competition-based damping, suspension, and manual transmission. It was race-like in design and communication. BMW was able to supply the M3 E30's first engine with 200 horsepower without the need for six cylinders or a turbocharger.
To be eligible for racing approval under Group A regulations, the E30 M3 must be sold at least 5,000 copies on the road. With its lightweight, powerful, and long-lasting M3 engine, the 1986 BMW M3 made a big impression. The BMW M3 racing model was quickly developed in 1987. It won national championships in France, England, and Italy with 300 horsepower. 360 horsepower was produced by the M3's most powerful 2.5-liter engine.
What Details Bolster the BMW M3 E30’s Performance?
The M3 E30 had improved dynamics due to its lighter car weight and a C-pillar that was wider than the 3 Series' two-door counterpart. The BMW M3 E30 had a similar bonnet to its sister models. However, it featured wider fenders that supported the larger tires and wheels. A trunk lid was raised and a rear spoiler was installed. The rear windscreen was also re-angled to improve airflow. Look to the front of an E30 M3 and you will see a large front spoiler with extensive side sills.
An M3 E30 has a 3-spoke steering column and electronically controlled door mirrors. This is a standard feature. The USA-approved BMW M3 E30 had slightly modified headlights, eight speakers, and third brake light. It also featured leather upholstery. The production of the BMW M3 E30 began during the summer of 1988. A standard feature was an electric hood, with an option for a removable hardtop.
The 1988 Evolution, which had 220 horsepower, was one of the special variants for the M3 E30. With only 600 examples made, the 1988 Evolution M3 E30 was one of the rarest vintage cars. BMW sold more than 18,000 M3E30 models.
The BMW's tailgate and front grille display M badges that communicate a clear message about driving performance.
What Significance Does The Audi Quattro Have in Racing History?
Audi's Ur-Quattro, which captured the attention at the 1980 International Geneva Motor Show, helped to kickstart 1980s sports car styling. The all-new Audi had a boxy 1980s design, 200 horsepower, and a new all-wheel-drive system. This car was a dominant force in rally racing during the 1980s. Audi was the first to introduce all-wheel drive into rallying.
Many people thought that Audi's use of all-wheel drive in racing was too complicated and heavy. However, the Quattro won its initial rallying entry and continued to win race victories over the next two years. Audi's all-wheel-drive capabilities were best displayed in rallying. Audi's rallying success continued until other manufacturers began to offer all-wheel drive in their vehicles. It is enough to say that the Audi Quattro was one the most popular motorsports vehicles of all time. Later street-legal Quattro models featured race-like components like a power-shift transmission gearbox.
What did the Audi Quattro Street Models do in the eyes of the public?
Quattro's were in high demand and the Ur-Quattro was released as a production model. It has undergone constant upgrades. The Quattro saw significant modifications, including a new dashboard and a sloping grille. Also, the 2.2L 5-cylinder engine produced 220 horsepower in 1987. Ur-Quattro's first model featured a 2.1-liter, 5-cylinder inline engine with 200 horsepower. You could get 306 horsepower on-demand by getting in a 1984 Audi Sport Quattro. An Audi with the word "Quattro" in its title and a lowercase "q" is an indication of an all-wheel-drive configuration.
The Audi Coupe shares many similarities to the Audi Quattro. These similarities include both body and parts. The Audi Quattro saw few changes during its long production run. 1985 saw the introduction of the Facelift Quattro model. This famously modified the headlights, badges, headlights, and other parts of the previous Quattro.
During the entire production period of the Audi Quattro, 664 models were sold in the United States. In this period, 664 Quattro models have been purchased in the U.S. The Quattro was ranked fourth in the list 1980's top sports cars by International Sports Car International Magazine. This ranking is based on the Quattro’s singular pioneering role in rallying using the all-wheel drive.
What Number of Datsun-280ZX 10th Anniversary Edition Models were Made?
Many Japanese car enthusiasts would love to own one of the 3,000 Datsun 285ZX 10th Anniversary Edition models. Every Datsun's 3,000 280ZX 10th Anniversary Edition model produced has a unique numbered plague which increases their value to car collectors. 500 Datsun's 280ZX 10th-anniversary editions had a black-and-red two-tone scheme, while the other 2,500 had a black-and-gold exterior design. The black and gold Datsun-280ZX 10th-anniversary edition is preferred by most vintage car enthusiasts over the red and black versions.
Datsun made the 280ZX 10th-anniversary edition model as luxurious and comfortable as possible. The Datsun 280ZX tenth anniversary edition was distinguished by leather upholstery, a high-quality four-speaker stereo, and a tinted roof. The Datsun 280ZX's 10th Anniversary Edition's front fenders are decorated with commemorative wreath decals. A golden Z hood badge is a nod to 1980s sports car design.
The Datsun 280ZX 10th Anniversary Edition was introduced in 1980, just like the Audi Quattro. The Datsun 280ZX tenth anniversary edition featured 1980s-style boxy proportions and sharp corners, which were balanced with late 1970s design influences. This limited edition sports car features electric windows, power steering, and gold floor carpeting. Datsun's 2.8-liter Inline-6 engine with 132 horsepower and 144 lb. ft of torque provided the Datsun-280ZX 10th-Anniversary Edition drivers with solid performance to complement the car’s stunning looks.
What media attention did the Datsun-280ZX 10th anniversary get?
The commercial below for Datsun 280ZX 10th anniversary edition is our favorite. It highlights the car's limited availability as well as a variety of standard luxury options. We love it! In 2019, a mint-condition Datsun 280ZX 10th-anniversary edition was available for a starting price of $42,000 on Amazon.
Do you want to place a bid?
What innovation did the Porsche 911 964 Carrera bring to the table?
Porsche's 911 was a well-known daily driver model. The 911 964 Carrera 4 debuted in 1989. This model is important because it is the first 911 with an all-wheel-drive system. Porsche released the 911 964 Carrera initially as an all-wheel-drive model. Later, they added other drivetrains to their 911 964 Carrera sales lineup. Today, you can buy any Porsche with an all-wheel drive.
This 911 was powered by a 3.6-liter flat-six naturally aspirated engine with 250 horsepower. It also has a 5.9-second average acceleration from 0-60 mph. The 911 964 Carrera 4, with its new strut suspension, was able to handle corners well. A powerful engine sound also added fun.
The 911 964 Carrera 4 is a classic 911 that boasts exceptional aerodynamics. The 911 964 Carrera's aerodynamic capabilities were enhanced by the addition of front and rear sections, and an automatic-extending rear spoiler. The rear spoiler would be extended if a driver exceeded 50 mph.
What is the Porsche 911 964 Carrera's interior?
The 911 964 Carrera 4 has a lot of elements that are reminiscent of the design of the previous generation. The 911 964 Carrera 4 driver is seated low, as the supportive seats hug and adjust to their body. The 911 cabin is light and airy, with optional linen leather making it even more appealing. The power steering of this model is responsive and well-weighted, so drivers get the feedback they expect from a 911.
This Porsche's front and rear apron were made of deformable plastic. A tail-light panel featured the red-reflective Porsche logo with red rear direction indicators. These two 911 models have a major difference in safety systems.
Which 1980s sports car is your favorite?
We are sure there are many more 1980s iconic sports cars than we have included in our list. We need your help to fill in the gaps by commenting on Move Car’s social media accounts of one or more 1980s sports car models.