There has never been a more contradictorily named vehicle than the Dodge Rampage. Today's Nice Price or Crack Pipe pickup is a little more rampageous owing to its turbo 2.2, but will its price prove riot worthy?
There is no arguing the coolness factor of Ford's classic Escort rally homage model. And, due to the fact that it was likely one of the only ones to make the trip across the Atlantic, yesterday's 1971 Mexico 1600GT was also likely the coolest in America. How cool you might ask? Well, apparently not twenty-three five cool as a solid 59% of you escorted the little Ford down to Crack Town.
Do you remember Monday's two-headed Horizon? Of course you do. That odd bodkin most likely left you with a taste for some L-body goodness, but perhaps something a little more practical, and a ton less WTF?. If that's the case then this turbo'd 1983 Dodge Rampage may just be your pre-Thanksgiving appetizer.
The Rampage is a car-based mini-pickup derived from the Omni coupe, itself a derivative of the Simca-engineered L-platform 5-door econobox. The Rampage shared everything forward of the mirrors with its three-door sibling, but out back it gained a half-ton double wall bed riding on leaf springs and sea leg shocks and a wheelbase extended to 104.5 inches.
The Rampages, and their short-lived Plymouth Scamp siblings, were never about performance, and didn't get any edition of Chrysler's de facto '80s performance engine - the turbo four, but this one does.
The 2.2 turbo did appear in the Shelby Chargers, and in fact this intercooled mill is claimed to be a 'CSX Carroll Shelby experimental turbo intercooled motor.' Huh? It also has 5-lug snowflakes which indicates that the suspension has been upgraded as well, additionally evidenced by a strut tower brace in the engine room.
Other than that it looks to be pure uncut '80s Rampage 2.2. That means lots of fake scoops and side stripes, while on the inside it has those puffy seats that Chrysler seemed to love back in the day. The steering wheel also looks to be out of something other than a Rampage, maybe a Daytona Turbo Z perhaps?
The ad claims 22K on the motor, and probably the gearbox behind it. It also notes that the car (truck? car-truck? cruck?) is being sold for the Bilbow Family of Lyndwood Welding and drag racing fame, coming from their private collection. That provenance obviously isn't like saying it's out of the Ralph Lauren collection but at least it impresses that the car was likely not built by some backwoods hack.
The Rampage was never very popular, racking up fewer than 18,000 sales its best year on the market. Still, it's an interesting bit of Mopar history, and considering that the Turbo 2.2 is good for anywhere from 140 to 180-bhp, this one at about 2,300 pounds should be pretty entertaining to drive.
But is that entertainment worth the $7,500 ticket being asked for the show? Yeah the car looks pretty nice, and yes it's a unique offering what with the turbo'd mill and all, but still that's an old L-body and aside from the actual Shelby cars, those generally suck.
What do you think about this odd Rampage and its $7,500 price? Is that a deal for a little ass hauler? Or, is this a truck priced not to give a… well, you know.
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