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Junkyard Gem: 1978 Plymouth Volaré Wagon

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When it got here time for Chrysler to retire the beloved however antiquated Dart and Valiant within the North American market, the Dodge Aspen and its Plymouth Volaré twin had been launched for the 1976 model year. Whereas the Aspen is best remembered right this moment (partly as a result of Aspens were in just about every cop TV show for a good decade and partly as a result of Chrysler revived the Aspen name for just a few years within the late 2000s), Plymouth’ssmall car with the accent on comfort” outsold the Aspen for each considered one of their 5 mannequin years of manufacturing. Here is a kind of Volarés, a ’78 station wagon with the Custom exterior and Premier interior packages, present in a Denver-area automotive graveyard just lately.

I believed this automotive appeared very acquainted, and it seems that it spent a few years parked in an alley driveway in my Denver neighborhood, subsequent to a Dodge 600 sedan (which continues to be on the highway; I noticed it transferring underneath its personal energy just a few weeks in the past). Again in the summertime of 2020, I shot this picture for an episode of 24 Hours of Lemons Carspotting. Now I want I would talked a neighborhood Lemons staff into providing a couple of dollars for this Volaré, as a result of it’s better to race than to get crushed.

Detroit went via an accent section that began with the Volaré after which continued with the Cadillac Allanté and Oldsmobile Troféo.

The inside on this automotive nonetheless seems to be fairly good. This wagon has the very same inside and exterior colors as the one in the Volaré brochure that year.

It is properly outfitted, with the elective 318-cubic-inch (5.2-liter) V8 and air-con (by way of the distinctive Chrysler V-twin compressor simply in entrance of the carburetor). The bottom value on this automotive was $4,195 (about $19,890 in 2022 {dollars}), whereas the 318 price $129 additional ($610 now). The A/C added $484 extra ($2,295 right this moment, and you’ll see how the worth tag received larger in a rush with low-priced vehicles again within the Seventies). Imagine it or not, a four-on-the-floor manual transmission was normal tools within the ’78 Volaré with 318 engine, however I’ve by no means seen one so outfitted; this automotive has the same old three-speed automated.

An affordable wagon just like the Volaré definitely wasn’t going to return with a radio on the base MSRP (although a dealer would possibly throw one in to sweeten the deal). This single-speaker, AM-only radio price $74 additional ($351 in 2022 {dollars}).

You could not haul the whole Little League staff on this wagon (for that, you wished not less than a Fury Sport Suburban), however the Volaré and Aspen wagons had been roomier than, say, a Datsun 810 or Toyota Corona wagon.

The inside is good sufficient, however there’s some rust within the common areas.

The final mannequin 12 months for the Volaré and Aspen was 1980, however their platform lived on with the Dodge Diplomat/Plymouth Gran Fury (each of which had been primarily based on the Aspen/Volaré-derived Chrysler New Yorker/Fifth Avenue) till the late Eighties.

The Chrysler Cordoba had the extraordinarily classy Ricardo Montalban in its adverts, whereas the Volaré needed to accept the Plymouth-budget Sergio Franchi.

In the meantime, the Aspen wagon received Rex Harrison on this advert with a quasi-musical quantity.

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