Bad Reputation: 1981 Chevrolet Citation X-11

by Kevin — GM’s X bodies launched with much fanfare, including a Car of the Year award. However, they quickly gained notoriety for, um, not being very good. This 1981 Chevrolet Citation X-11 offered for $5,500 in Rochester, NY via craigslist may be one of the nicest remaining.

The paint is in good condition for the year, although the plastic bits have aged differently from the metal ones. The bumper fillers are all present and the car comes with a sunroof and louvers on the rear glass.

A picture of the engine is not included in the ad, but you should expect to find the high-output version of Chevy’s 2.8L V6. Rated at 135hp, it was only 5hp short of the 305 V8 offered in the Malibu that year. Paired with a 4 speed manual the X-11 could run to 60 in 8.5 seconds. Pretty quick for its time and still faster than some of the econoboxes on sale today. I’m looking at you Corolla!

The interior is also in good shape and reflects the low mileage on the odometer. An aftermarket gauge above the light switch appears to be the only modification. A 7000 rpm tach with a 5500 rpm redline and an 85mph speedo are sad reminders of the way things used to be. A helping of dirt of unknown vintage is also included in the driver’s side foot well.

Have you seen another Citation in any condition?

“Kevin is an avid, but horrible golfer. He has an unusual fascination with T-tops and enjoys swimming with dolphins. Two of these things are true.”