Sunday Supper

Actually, I don’t eat supper or dinner or whatever you want to call the last, and usually biggest, meal of the day. I have a very bad case of GERD, have had my upper GI tract scoped at least 17 times and have found that simply not eating after 3 or 4 PM is very helpful in reducing the number of horrible reflux attacks. Have you ever been awakened because you can’t breathe and your throat feels like it is literally on fire? I would MUCH rather go to bed hungry every night than have even a 1 in 1,000 chance of experiencing what the gastroenterologists like to call “breakthrough reflux.”

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People trying to find out why Jared Zimmerman is no longer on Car Fix and/or people trying to find out why Cristy Lee is no longer on All Girls Garage clicked on Disaffected Musings often enough yesterday to generate a number of views that was three times the daily average. Where Is Cristy Lee? is now the most read post in the history of this blog, not counting the About page.

The on-air talent on Motor Trend is usually very tight-lipped about speaking in public regarding their personal lives and what is happening with their shows. I have read that Heather Storm was not happy that the network announced her departure from Garage Squad before she could reveal it on “social media” and before, I guess, the network had said it would make the announcement.

As a car nut (maybe I’m just a nut and cars have nothing to do with it) I watch Motor Trend more than the average TV viewer. If a non-football show is not on Motor Trend, an episode of American Pickers or a Mecum Auction broadcast, then I am almost certainly not watching it. I have read that despite the hundreds of channels available to cable/satellite subscribers, the average family watches just 17 channels. Of course, the move to streaming has really changed the way people consume TV.

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On this day in 1979 Chevrolet began production of its first front-wheel drive car, the Citation, as a 1980 model year vehicle. This car was one of four built on General Motors’ 2nd-generation X-platform. These were the first all-American developed front-wheel drive cars introduced for high-volume/mainstream sales. (The other three cars were the Buick Skylark, Oldsmobile Omega and Pontiac Phoenix.)

 

See the source image

 

From Barn Finds a picture of a 1982 Citation in X-11 spec. The X-11 was the “high performance, high looks” version. The car was equipped with a 2.8 liter/173 cubic-inch V-6 that produced 135 HP/145 LB-FT of torque. Yes, that passed for performance in 1982. The base Citation engine was a 2.5 liter/151 cubic-inch inline-4 that generated 90 HP/132 LB-FT.

I was still in college when these cars were introduced and I liked the looks of the X-11 Citation. A poor reputation based on quality and safety issues, not all of which were definitively proven, killed the X-platform which was discontinued in 1985. People have forgotten that these cars, particularly the Citation, were enormously successful, at least at first. In its albeit long first model year of 1980 (beginning in April of 1979, that’s why I’m writing about it today, remember?) about 812,000 Citations were produced. That’s more than the number of Mustangs produced in its first, and also extended, model year of 1965 that began in April, 1964.

Citation sales declined sharply; in 1982, the model year of the car pictured above, only 166,000 Citations were made, of which only about 9,100 were the coupe. The next model year saw sales decline to fewer than 100,000 (92,184, to be exact).

Of course, front-wheel drive cars came to dominate the US market until the sea change to SUVs (many of which are FWD if they’re not AWD) and pickup trucks. If we buy a 2006-07 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS as our Corvette companion, we will be driving an ideological descendant of the Citation as the Monte Carlo was FWD from model year 1995 through its end in 2007.

Does anyone have any opinions and/or experience with an X-platform car like the Citation? In general, please feel free to submit thoughtful comments, to click on any (or all) of the related posts listed at the end of each post, to sign up to follow the blog, to tell your friends about Disaffected Musings, to click on any hyperlink (the words in blue), to click on any ad in which you have genuine interest OR all of the above. Thanks.

 

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6 thoughts on “Sunday Supper

  1. The build quality on the X-body cars was/is notoriously poor, even by the low bar set by GM standards. This was an inevitable by-product of letting the accountants instead of the “car guys” run the company. Rust was a huge problem across the X-body line. For one example, accounting-dictated short cuts in build quality meant the window seals were inadequate and the doors and body panels housing a window (for example in a 2 door car) allowed water to infiltrate, accumulate and release the dreaded tin worm. The Chevrolet Vega is often called the world’s first car guaranteed to rust out on the show room floor, but the X-body cars were even worse.

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    1. Glad to have you back commenting, 56PackardMan.

      The X-platform cars were sort of like an organ transplant that seems to be going spectacularly well at first only to suffer extreme rejection later because of a proliferation of side effects.

      As you might imagine, I don’t think a car company run solely by “bean counters” or “car guys” is the optimal solution. A real passion for design and quality has to exist, but companies have to make money or they don’t (usually) stay in business.

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  2. I bought a 1980 2 door for my (unknown to me at the time) soon to be ex wife in the spring of 1980. I had grown tired of rescuing her and her wore out VW bug, that she LOVED, every 2 weeks or so. I think i drove the car maybe a half dozen times in the next 7 months. From my limited drive time, it struck me as transportation, nothing more. As part of the divorce settlement, I was required to pay off the car and assign the title to her, in return for keeping the other cars and motorcycles that I had. As such, I have no real love for these, and likely wouldn’t take one if I was paid to take it.

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    1. Completely understand your aversion to these cars. They are not well-loved by the vast majority of automobile aficionados, either.

      These would be WAY down on my list of cars to acquire, but if I were suddenly worth $100,000,000 or $1,000,000,000 then a good example of these could be about #97 on my list. I did really like the look of the X-11 when it was introduced.

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      1. I don’t agree, but different strokes for different folks.

        “97” was a number I just picked out of the air (or somewhere else). I don’t really know where a Citation X-11 would rank. Believe it or not, even I have never tried to rank my favorite 100 or 200 cars.

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