2k: Notta Pantera: 1980 Dodge DeTomaso Omni 024
The Dodge Omni was built in large quantities in a Chrysler operated Belvedere Illinois assembly plant, but it was apparently engineered by the French company Simca before being shoved into a Dodge wrapper. Anyone casually aware of the Omni probably knows their relationship to the Dodge Charger and Plymouth Horizon/Turismo, but you probably didn’t know that Argentinian born sports car builder Alejandro DeTomaso put his name on the side of a few of them. Find this 1980 Dodge DeTomaso Omni 024 offered for $1500 in Imlay City, MI. Tip from 300whpcrx.
The DeTomaso option on the basic Omni kept the same VW souced inline-4 cylinder engine, but added two special paint schemes (red or the bright yellow seen here), blacked out trim, special 13inch alloy wheels and those bitchin rear/side window louvers.
The above pictures is either a French engineered, Italian labeled and German built cappuccino machine…or a 1.7 liter Volkswagen engine. The VW sourced engine puts out 70 horsepower from its single overhead cam and double boiler setup.
Frankly, the most desireable portion of the Omni DeTomaso package is that people might think it isn’t an Omni or that DeTomaso might have injected it with something other than big yellow badges. More yellow badges on the inside please!
See another DeTomaso badged oddity for less? email@example.com
These were much more of a joke than even the Shelby Omni versions. I hated these cars or any other hopped-up Omni like the 024 or the Plymouth Turismo with a passion. Everything about them was chintzy, you could just about take the car apart in its entirety using only your hands. They would only start when cold in the wintertime if you were having a lucky day and would then just sputter, spew and stall and take forever to warm up to what was absolutely zero balls when they finally got warm enough to actually run. If they didn't rust completely out within five years, they often met their demise sooner by catching on fire which happened to a friend's Rampage, the stupid little pick up truck version of this pile of Chrysler dung.
Oh YEAH, BABY! Let the 80s begin.
During the 70s and 80s, domestic automakers made abundantly clear their disdain for the American car-buying public. While Chrysler was "engineering" this POS, Japanese and European brands gave us countless cars that are currently becoming bonafide classics. Shame.
Mom had an 024 and then "upgraded" to the Shelby version. Build quality was pathetic, paint started falling off in sheets within the first 6 months and the car was repainted under warranty, Interior was a disaster of horrible plastic that would crumble at the slightest provocation. The shift linkage broke 3 times because the critical connection between the stick and the transmission was cheap plastic that disintegrated.
Perhaps I'm crazy but for some reason I really still love the look of those wheels. They were a bitch to keep clean because the little holes around the edge were cut with a "pebbly" finish that trapped every grain of brake dust but I still like them. Not sure what I'd put them on though…. These wheels on a Spitfire or a TR6 would be an abomination.
That has upper management written all over it. Very handsome example of automotive art. Not, its a pile of s hi t. Funny ad!
I drove a friends who had one of these big piece of crap is being too nice here.
Okay,yes, these were awful crap. The four-door was at least a copy of a good design, even if it was horribly built.
But…they were still better than all the K-car junk that followed, they were proportioned for normal-size humans. With the Aries/Reliant Chrysler's design process was (a) take a picture of an Aspen (b) shrink everything 10% (c) build it.
So you ended up with the Box Props of cars, it looked if you squinted a little like a Traditional American Sedan but if you looked at the details, the controls, the seats, the door openings, everything was Fairyland-sized.
The worst, cheesiest decade of product ever put out by an American automaker, and people bought 'em.
This car would be a good candidate for a restomod treatment once the body shell has been worked on.