1980 Dodge Aspen Review Ratings
1980 Dodge Aspen Review
Fuel economy, looks, comfortable interior, good handling, reliable, smooth.
Less-than-desireable performance, runs poorly in cold weather, limited by restictive exhaust and restrictive intake.
1980 Dodge Aspen Se Coupe - A Review 30-years In The Making. — During the late 1970's, the replacement for the Plymouth Valiant and the Dodge Dart were soon to come. In 1976, they came by name of Aspen and Volare. In the 1976/77 model years, the cars were produced at a break-neck pace which caused the car to be plagued with rust problems Chrysler Corporation fixed this issue for the 1978 model year, but by that time, the name of the cars was already soiled -- that's why I'm here to clean it up. At the moment, I possess a 29,000 original mile 1980 Dodge Aspen special edition. When I started driving it, it was completely stock. Of course as I started driving it more I did upgrade parts, but the review I'm about to present is about prior to the upgrades. 1980 DODGE ASPEN SPECIAL EDITION - 225 C.U. I6 "SLANT SIX" - A904 AUTOMATIC TRANSMISSION Performance - in terms of performance, this car was about average for its times. Remember, the fastest production vehicle for one of the years in the last 1970's was a truck, not a Corvette or Mustang. With the slant six and the A904 automatic transmission, it gradually accelerates at a very calm, controllable pace. It can reach 60 at roughly 13 seconds and could achieve the quarter mile at about 19 seconds. This was done with a Carter BBS single barrel carb on top of an iron intake manifold. The brakes on this car are the same as any car from the time period - anti-lock brakes didn't exist then. Brakes are 11 inch disks in the front, and 10 inch drums in the rear. If you pump the brakes when slowing down instead of slamming on them, they will work just as well without locking up. In terms of handling, this car is an exception to the Mopar stereotype of poor handling. This car handles well, and is very smooth in the corners. I'm not going to say it handles like a 2010 WRX STi, but for 1980 it did the job better than most. Build Quality - For being an "economy" car back in the late 1970's, this car is built like a tank. The typical careless paint drips usually found on cars of this type from the 1970's are not found (original factory paint when bought - papers to verify). The steel construction along with the comfortable, plush interior made this car not only safe, but a logical choice for a daily driver. The quality of the build in this car is 100% soilid. Appearance - In 1980, Chrysler Corporation redesigned the Aspen/Volare to give it more of a boxy front end look, but still retained the semi-fastback rear used since 1976. While the car isn't exactly an Aston Martin DBS by any means, it is still a relatively attractive car with the squarish front eventually giving away to the swanky curves reminiscent of the old Duster. Cost of Ownership - This car, with the slant six and automatic transmission, gets about 26 MPG highway and about 19/20 around town with the single barrel carb. With the right tuning, a light foot, and a freer-flowing exhaust you could more likely get 29/30 miles to the gallon. In terms of maintenance, change the oil every 3,000 miles (preferably synthetic), oil the hinges, and have the engine / suspension components every 6-9 months out of the year, and this car will last you a very long time. The "slant six" engine in this car is also regarded as one of the most reliable, rugged, and tough engines of all time. Fun Factor - While the car is not very fast, it still is a fun car to drive. It can still do donuts, spins, drifts, and when neutral-dropped, it can also burn the rear tire(s). This car also receives quite the attention whenever I'm at a gas station, even by folks with muscle cars. The 1980 Dodge Aspen SE is a car that suffered from a tarnished reputation from earlier production woes. I am here telling you today that the production woes ended in 1977, and that this is a great car.
1980 Dodge Aspen Review
easy to get to know, good engine
vinyl top. i don't think there was much metal under it
Great First American Car — my first american car was this '80 dodge aspen special edition (dunno what SE means). it had 225cid slant-six super six. the engine was surprisingly good. it had good gas mileage and it performed really well. better than smog-era chevy 305. the car was very reliable and we had many fun roadtrips with it.
Reviews From Other Years
1979 Dodge Aspen (se)
Performance is good for being, quite literally, an antique. I have had to make repairs, but the car is 30 years old... What do you expect? I personally like the appearance though the color leaves room... Read More
1979 aspen R/T, custum paint, special hood air grabber... 360 cid, 300 hp or so, 4 spd, 2,94 sure grip Read More
Performance - its an old classic with a slant 6, not that powerful. braking is ok, and handling not so good. Build Quality - very solid, engine built great. Appearance - for '78, looking great! no rus... Read More
1980 Dodge Aspen
My 1980 Aspen has 287,000 miles on it currently. I bought it used for $1,000. The engine has lost compression due to its age, but runs like a top. The retro look of the exterior (virtually rust free t... Read More
i loved my aspen it was the best first car ever super sturdy hunk of metal pushed buy a slant six with enough juice to make it a one wheel wonder mine was the special edition so it had the R/T inte... Read More