Junkyard Gem: 1984 Subaru DL Hardtop Coupe

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Because the Eighties progressed, People got here to know Subarus as rather more than the butt-of-jokes tiny 1970s econoboxes that have been lucky to get a shoutout from Debbie Harry alongside Cadillac, Lincoln, and Mercury. Four-wheel-drive Subaru wagons started to develop a cult following in snowy areas, and the arrival of the second-generation Leone (referred to as, merely, “the Subaru” in North America) for the 1980 mannequin 12 months lastly put Subaru into the American motoring mainstream. You can buy these cars as sedans, hatchbacks, wagons, pickups, and even in sporty two-door hardtop coupe type. Few purchased the Leone coupes, and so Subaru stopped making them after 1984; this is a type of uncommon automobiles, present in a Denver-area yard final week.

The third-generation Leones appeared in American showrooms for the 1985 mannequin 12 months, although People bought the second-generation hatchback through 1989 and the BRAT by way of 1987. The non-BRAT Leone variations have been named utilizing a maddening system that used the trim degree because the mannequin title, a observe that continued even after the XT and Justy arrived. The DL lived between the cheapo STD (sadly, no STD badges have been ever placed on automobiles) and the upscale GL, and all the 1980-1984 hardtop coupes have been DLs.

It was a handsome automotive for its time, although it did not swipe many gross sales from the likes of the Prelude or the Corolla SR5 coupe

The brown pinstripes and 1960s-Japan-style decorations under the quarter home windows added some pizzazz.

In 1984, solely the hatchback, pickup, and wagon Leones may very well be bought with four-wheel-drive powertrains (true all-wheel-drive methods did not present up in US-market Subarus till a lot later within the decade). All of the hardtop coupes had front-wheel-drive.

This one has the 1.6-liter EA71 boxer 4, rated at 68 horsepower. Since this automotive tipped the scales at simply over a ton, it was gradual however not intolerably gradual. The 1.8-liter EA81 was accessible for this automotive, and it delivered 73 horses.

Whereas the unique purchaser of this automotive declined to pay for 5 extra horsepower, they did show keen to spring for the optionally available five-speed guide as an alternative of the bottom four-on-the-floor.

Air con was accessible, too, however solely as a dealer- or aftermarket-installed possibility. This automotive by no means bought A/C, however its drivers had the pleasure of being reminded of the unique purchaser’s cheapness throughout each summer season commute.

There is a little bit of corrosion right here and there, nothing approaching lethality, however the possibilities of this automotive being rescued by a vintage-Subaru fanatic have been by no means good. To begin with, there is a glut of second-gen Leones in Entrance Vary Colorado (I find them in local car graveyards all the time) and, extra essential, solely the BRAT appears to get a lot curiosity. Subsequent cease might be the crusher.

This home-market advert would not point out the hardtop coupe, however the gaijin dancers’ outfits should be admired and so I’ve included it right here.

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