1980 Volkswagen Rabbit Overview

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1980 Volkswagen Rabbit Overview

The big news for 1980 was the addition of a convertible to the Volkswagen Rabbit lineup. The Rabbit Convertible came with a slightly upgraded engine, a 1.6-liter single-overhead-cam four-cylinder, which generated 76 horsepower. The convertible lost its hatchback (naturally), and instead came with a small trunk. A padded rollbar, located just behind the front seats, was added for structural stability and safety purposes.

Also joining the Rabbit lineup for 1980 was a Rabbit pickup, which was longer than the standard Rabbit (by nearly three feet) and came with either a gas or diesel engine.

Standard power for the Rabbit was 71-horsepower four-cylinder engine installed sideways, so that it minimized the amount of space it required. A 48-horsepower, 1.5-liter diesel was also available. A four-speed manual transmission was standard in the Rabbit, while a four-speed automatic was available as an option. The diesel was available with a five-speed manual.

In addition to the basic Rabbit, the Rabbit Convertible, and the Rabbit pickup truck, the Rabbit was available in a number of other packages, including the Rabbit C, the Rabbit L, and the Rabbit LX. The Rabbit C package was equipped with an AM/FM radio, a color-coordinated interior, reclining front seats, a rear window defogger, and a day/night rearview mirror, while the Rabbit L package added such features as a wood-grained dash, special moldings on the windows and hatch, and a lockable glovebox.

MacPherson struts, large disc brakes, rack and pinion steering, four-wheel independent suspension, and energy-absorbing bumpers were all standard equipment.

Drivers were impressed with the Rabbit's handling, quickness, and gas mileage.

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