When it comes to news outlets you don't get much more conservative than FOX. In a similar vein, today's Nice Price or Crack Pipe Audi Fox is a pretty traditional take on the family sedan, but will you find its price to be fair and balanced?
You know, I think that the builder of yesterday's super clean Buick-powered 1983 Olds Cutlass Cruiser's only mistake was not backing up the turbo motor with a stickity shifter. Had that been the case that car would have made all your heads explode like that guy in Scanners. As it was, 57% of you found it too expensive, somewhat automatically.
A couple of weeks back we had a super rare VW K70 on the docket. That was Volkswagen's first-ever front-wheel drive car, and its layout - inline engine overhanging ahead of a longitudinal transaxle - was one that was also employed by the K70's successor, the Passat.
Of course back in the '70s the Germans rightfully knew that Americans were too juvenile to accept the Passat name, likely equating it to a fart sound, so when they introduced the car here it was called the Dasher. Audi's edition of the platform, numerically anointed the 80 in Das Vaterland, also received a transatlantic name change, going by Fox over here. That might seem crazy like a fox, but the car was still good enough to win the 1973 European Car of the Year award.
This Houston-offered 1979 Fox sedan is thusly badged and represents the last model year that you actually could get foxy in an Audi. While the Passat/Dasher was sold in fastback body styles, the Audi arrived in the more traditional, and timelessly styled, three-box form. These cars are remarkable for there space efficiency, possessing lots of interior space afforded partially by frighteningly thin doors, and an extreme verticality in most all dimensions The cars also have cavernous trunks.
In fact these cars were so skinny and ephemeral that there wasn't much room for rustproofing and hence many if not most of these early Audis have turned from German cars into Swiss cheese and then to indeterminate piles of iron oxide bookended by massive and seemingly incorruptible aluminum bumpers.
Yeah, that's one of the downsides of these early cars, that being that they weren't originally designed with the U.S.A.'s 5-mph bumper standards in mind, and hence the battering rams stand away from the body like junior high kids at their first dance. This one's a '79 and hence it has the four-lamp nose that was introduced in '76 in an attempt to bring the styling in line with the then new 100. In Europe that included the turn signals in the grille corners, but as the American cars had theirs in the bumper, they received a full-width and wrap-around horizontal bar affair.
The ad for this 125,000 miler says that the present owner has fitted H4s for the lowbeams, which according to him vastly improved night lighting. Aside from that, and a set of later 4000 wheels and aftermarket shocks, there doesn't seem to be much out of the ordinary or out of the original on this 4-door Fox.
The drivetrain is a 1.6 litre four that originally pumped out something in the neighborhood of 83 horses in its U.S. form. Here that's backed by a 4-speed stick. I'm not sure if it represents some specific trim level, but it does rock the cool three-spoke steering wheel and three-gauge console that were features of the two-door only GT.
Everything on the inside looks reasonably untested by time, although the sun visors are wrinkly enough to be Spongebob characters. There's also some fading on the carpet, a small tear in the driver's seat, and I'll bet that lifting up the carpeted dash cap will reveal more cracks than a plumber's convention.
There are two other issues to take into consideration, and they are both interrelated. The windscreen is significantly cracked, and is one of those issues. The other is that, while the seller says he has a replacement, he won't be able to get to having it installed until after Christmas. You might also note that all the pics in his ad are from December as well.
That all means the car's been on the market now for 3 months or so, and that typically indicates there's something amiss - rotten in Denmark as they say. Perhaps it's the price. The seller is asking $3,250 for this Fox and you now need to say whether that's the likely reason he's not having any luck in moving this metal. What do you think, is that fair deal for a rare Fox? Or, is this an Audi that you would bid adieu?
H/T to muthalovin for the hookup!
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