Is a 1982 Cadillac Cimarron a desired car?

Asked by Apr 09, 2013 at 08:02 PM about the 1982 Cadillac Cimarron Base Sedan

Question type: Shopping & Pricing

16 Answers


No way....I remember that horrendous car...It was a MAJOR FAIL for GM..Don't buy it! Here's an excerpt about it from Wikipedia: Yet even years after the model was discontinued, the Cimarron's legacy remains negative. The car has become a staple of books and articles about bad cars. Forbes placed the Cimarron on its list of "Legendary Car Flops," citing low sales, poor performance and the fact the car "didn't work, coming from a luxury brand." Author Hannah Elliott explained that the Cimarron "appealed neither to Cadillac's loyal followers, who appreciated powerful V8s and Cadillac's domestic luxury edge, nor to buyers who favored Europe's luxury brands, whose cars out-handled and out-classed the Cimarron in every way." In 2009, CNN Money noted in "GM's junk heap" of unsuccessful nameplates that the Cimarron was, "In all important respects, a Chevrolet Cavalier. It also added thousands to the price tag. In all, it was neither a good Cadillac nor a good value.

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One of the 50 worst cars ever made. Not my opinion, taken from Motor Trend: The horror. The horror. Everything that was wrong, venal, lazy and mendacious about GM in the 1980s was crystallized in this flagrant insult to the good name and fine customers of Cadillac. Spooked by the success of premium small cars from Mercedes-Benz, GM elected to rebadge its awful mass-market J-platform sedans, load them up with chintzy fabrics and accessories and call them "Cimarron, by Cadillac." Wha...? Who? Seeking an even hotter circle of hell, GM priced these pseudo-caddies (with four-speed manual transmissions, no less) thousands more than their Chevy Cavalier siblings. This bit of temporizing nearly killed Cadillac and remains its biggest shame.

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Well Racer. wiki and Motor Trend, a reputable magazine seem to agree, eh?

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David..I remember a friend from college who owned one and bragged that he owned a Caddy..LMAO!!...It looked like a modified Cavalier...Not sure what was worse, the Cimmaron, the Pontiac Aztek, or the Fiero. Ugh!

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Popular Mechanics, another good source: Auto News 1982-1988 Cadillac Cimarron Cadillac Cimarron There's nothing wrong with the idea of a smaller, more athletic Cadillac. But it was a terrible idea to rebadge the Chevrolet Cavalier and attempt to pawn it off as a true Cadillac. The compact J-Car program was already well under development at GM by the time Cadillac decided it wanted a version of its own. With little time on its hands and no desire to spend much money, what they came up with was a Cavalier with a different grille, a slightly modified interior and some hydraulic dampers between the body and front subframe. Otherwise, the 1982 Cimarron was powered by the same 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine as the Cavalier, backed by either a four-speed manual or three-speed automatic transmission. Cadillac tried to sell the Cimarron as a domestic alternative to cars like the BMW 3 Series—that was just pathetic. Not surprisingly, practically no one fell for it and the Cimarron never sold well. But to many people, this proved that GM at the time had little regard for the storied and significant Cadillac brand.

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You just confirmed what I found, Racer I did know it was a major debacle but until now not how badly ....enzigey..does that answer your question? I think it will

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It was like putting lipstick on a pig.

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TS that's hands down better than all the stuff we posted, thanks man, really, way good answer. Right to the point and true

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Thanks David. Ten back at cha'

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Hey guys, out of curiosity I plugged in a search here on CarGurus for a Cimarron. all years. nationwide, guess what? None for sale. Not a one

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No surprise there at all, David. I haven't seen one on the roads since the mid-late 80's. Wonder if any can be found in a single auto scrapyard in ANY state in the USA? Hmm? Could make up a new reality show "Find the Crap Car!" and have people racing against the clock to find rusted out Cimmarons, Yugos and other automotive nightmares and get them running again :)


desired ? today .not much, body parts are scarce. when new by some with money to burn, cavaliers were sold by the 1000s and a good easy .to service fuel efficient car.when that caddy bombed, and only from the sales aspect, as they cost like hell for what you got, and every one said a glorified cavalier that's terrible. so the prices dropped like the copter that ran out of fuel today from pilot texting the chick! well you did get something for all that cash ,plush leather,8 way power seats ,independent suspension,all disc, abs ,quiet insulated cabin, Bose system eight speaker,and everything else they could cram in .Then they were very desirable on the used market, at that time I couldn't buy them fast enough[, used to sell cars ] to fill orders !cavalier was durable and so was the Cimarron .reminds me of the Peugeots .A well kept secret for the used market.

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yeah i got one of the later V-6 4 speed manual from '86, its my first car and got it for free so I don't mind, but it is slowly falling apart

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thatoneguy86...You just MAY have the LAST running Cimarron on the planet, dude!!! Call the Smithsonian or a big shot Auto Museum and see if they will buy it from you. Kinda funny, every now and then, I'll see a car that I THOUGHT was extinct drive past me on the highway....I've recently seen a Dodge Daytona, Pontiac Aztek, a couple of Pontiac Fieros, Chrysler's TC by Maserati --pictured below-- (similar to the Cimarron in that it was a rebadged Chrysler LeBaron with fancy interior and Maserati badging)...Good Lord, I just found THIS on the internet, Chrysler is looking to bring back the TC for 2014, they must be insane: news/2012/03/maserati-tc-revived-chrysler.html

I actually owned a Cimarron that i bought from a guy who had won it in a sales contest (got it for about 65% of the price) in my early 30s. I loved the car. had the stick shift,touring suspension, all the goodies. Was underpowered , but got GREAT mileage on the highway. it was classic GM, a great idea (small, fuel efficient luxury car) extremely poorly executed. Had the car for 80,000 miles and never spent a dime beyond maintenance..Much later , it was a Buick that eventually drove me to "foreign " cars, and i have not been back since .....

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