Saturday, January 30, 2016

Found on Road Alive :1985 Plymouth Horizon

Here in the land that rust forgot I spotted one of the most forgettable cars from Chrysler...a Plymouth Horizon at a grocery store in Arcadia.  Forgettable as in I haven't seen one of these beasts in 25 or more years and completely forgot they ever existed.

These were intereting cars.  Sourced from a Simca platform this European Chrysler Division was the starting point for building stiff competition to VW's Rabbit (later changed to Golf) here in the U.S.
On paper it sounded pretty good, compact front wheel drive, 4 door hatchback and a VW sourced engine,  They sold well the first couple of years and were enough to get Chrysler bankruptcy protection help from the U.S. Government.  In typical Chrysler fashion for the era, they beat that horse until it was nothing but welts and a joke in the market place.  With a run from 1978-1990 it only produced 961,508 units.

There was one bright point in this platforms history.  The Dodge version got a turbocharged four cylinder producing 170 hp from a much larger than standard 2.2l 4cylinder.  This engine massaged by Shelby along with some suspension wore the GLH badge...
And like a bat out of hell it showed that Chyslers Dodge division was the performance division for the brand and this limited edition sold well establishing performance bars for others in the compact market to rise too.