Lest we forget, this was breathed on by Lotus. has it made any difference? Read on.
Taken from R&T’s 1988 March issue, last week we’ve seen an ad of this car:
I think this was a “T-car” (GM Opel Kadett/Chevette/Brazilian variant/Opel Isuzu).
If so, it is the “ultimate ‘Vette” (“Chevette” that is)
Faster than a speeding bullet
Remember this commercial?
And MotorWeek’s Retro Review:
I wonder how the suspension tuning compared with the by then long out of production Kadett and Vauxhall Chevette sport models. Those cars would not have had 2800 pounds to push around or a 140hp turbo to do it with.
I love the emblem overload and those great looking eighties bucket seats.
Vauxhall Chevette HS, 2.3L in rally trim approx 240hp it would eat the impulse in any area.
I still think these are some of the best-looking cars imported to the U.S. in the 1980’s. I remember they used to be given as prizes on “Dance Fever”.
My friend had 2(!!!!!!!!!!!) Of these. One turbo and lotus handling and the other naturally aspirated with regular handling. SUPER cool and very fun cars and extremely rare nowadays. Also, the interior was one of the coolest places I’ve ever been in.
I wonder if Giugiaro ever imagined that the Ace of Spades would wind up an Isuzu… especially with BMW and Audi nosed examples making the show car rounds.
During the 80’s, it was such a big deal (as it is now) to see a DeLorean in person. Being that Giugiaro used the same details in a lot of his cars, I was always confusing this Isuzu or a Scirocco for a Delorean until I got close enough to be disappointed. Now I get excited to see an 80’s Impulse or Scirocco in person.
“I wonder if Giugiaro ever imagined that the Ace of Spades would wind up an Isuzu”
He certainly did, as the Asso di Fiori was commissioned by Isuzu as a possible replacement for the also designed by Giugiaro 117 coupe. The Isuzu badge is clearly visible on the hood of the show car. No new territory being treaded here. Also, the second generation Scirocco was not a Giugiaro design; His rejected proposal presented to VW looks much like the eventual 1981 Audi Coupe Quattro.
This is what Giugiaro thought Scirocco 2.0 should have been:
I occasionally see the later model Impulses on area roads, this model? never see them. I even see a Stylus from time to time in this area.
I agree, ultimate “expression” of the “T-car” design.
I know the Impulse can be had with the cool “checkerboard” wheel covers.
It is interesting to note that in Japan, the “tuned by Lotus” Piazza was not the top model. German tuning firm Irmscher (of Opel fame) was called in for the most sporting suspension setup, and it is said they are considerably firmer and even more athletic in ability:
Wasn’t there a Stylus model with the Irmsher “treatment” on the Japanese market, as well?
Most (all?) JDM Isuzus got the Irmscher treatment from the mid 80’s on until they started outsourcing to Honda for passenger cars. I know of the Gemini, Aska, Piazza, and Pa Nero.
Aska was also GM J car sourced and a rebadged Subaru Legacy at various points Irmscher did the early Isuzu troopers Lotus the later 90s models when GM had control of Lotus.
Never knew about the Trooper, but right you are after some research. Dad had a US spec ’86 Trooper II 2 door, so the Irmscher JDM trims are quite the surprise to me!
I remember this generation Isuzu Impulse. I found it quite attractive. I’ve never owned one, nor have I driven one, but I used to know some people who owned some. They liked everything about the cars except the automatic shoulder harness that moves across the chest when you close the door.
One of my co-workers had one of these. He loved it. It handled well and was quite peppy. One day while driving up I-95 in FL, the transmission exploded spreading little pieces all over the place. He did some research and discovered that Isuzu had used the wrong hardness factor on the gears and they were too hard and suseptable to brittleness. As the car was fairly new, he hoped that there would be some warrantee, but no. he had another one installed and sold the car before that one exploded as well
Fantastic design, and the driving ability to go with it–certainly the ultimate expression of the lowly T-car underpinnings, at least in the USA.
I’ve not seen one in many, many years though. Perhaps the exploding transmissions mentioned above have something to do with it?
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