Brand New 1987 Dodge Colt Vista

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Finding a low mileage “collector” car is always special, but not nearly as surprising as finding super low mileage economy car like this Colt. According to the seller, this car was parked in a dealership and was simply never sold. As a result, it’s seen just 117 km or 73 miles, which is unreal when you consider that this was an affordable economy car that should have been driven into the ground years ago. You can take a closer look at this survivor here on in Waalwijk, Netherlands with an astonishing asking price of €14,950 or $16,729. Thanks to Daniel F for this tip!

The Colt is a platform share between Chrysler and Mitsubishi. Power comes from a Mitsubishi built 4G63 engine with power going to the front wheels via a 3-speed automatic. This is a variant of the same engine found in the Mitsubishi Eclipse and is a powerhouse in turbo form. In this naturally aspirated 4G63B configuration, it’s good for 88 horsepower with an emphasis on fuel efficiency. It’s a good little engine, but won’t be shattering any records. Given the ultra-low mileage, it probably doesn’t really matter what kind of power it produces or even it’s fuel mileage, as it won’t be seeing much use anyways.

You won’t expect this compact wagon to have space to haul 7, but with the third-row seats, this is a surprisingly capable little car. As you can see, the interior is in as great of condition as you’d expect from a 73-mile car. It’s also as ’80s as you’d expect, with copious amounts of cheap plastic.

This really is an odd car to find with such low mileage and it would be really interesting to know why this car never sold. Even more perplexing is why they kept it for so long. Surely, someone would have wanted it with the right price. So, what are your thoughts on why they held onto it for so long?

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  1. Bob C.

    My sister bought a 1991 Colt Vista brand new similar to this one, drove it for many years, and handed it down to her son. Yes, they drove it into the ground, as you said.

    Like 6
  2. Midwest Jeff

    Why did someone hold onto this car for so long?.

    “Ik weten wat Ik gekregen. Nee lowballers.”

    Or something along those lines.

    Like 5
    • Sheldon Renaissance Kirschbaum

      The keys were lost behind a file cabinet until last week!

      Like 7
  3. DRV

    My cousins had one for years and over 400k miles. Besides the economy and decent handling there is no reason to have one. It was the most invisible car of it’s day.

    Like 7
  4. Todd Zuercher

    Back in the day, the 3rd seats in these cars were a hot swap as a rear seat in early Broncos. I pulled more than one out of cars in our local u-jerk-its.

    Like 4
  5. local_sheriff

    I’ d completely forgotten about this car; to stumble upon one in such MISB condition is unbelievable though.
    Maybe I’m wrong but in my world this is just an old car, not a classic…they simply saved the wrong one… But that’s what everobody said about 60s longroofs until early 2000s also…
    As for the asking I think someone has had a drink at work – just being an old car doesn’t make it collectible

    Like 4
    • JBP

      Your right. Its a pos. That dealer is expensive. I say max 5000€. And thats max. Who want to come to a car meeting with this?

      Like 2
      • local_sheriff

        That’s a good question JBP, I think that guy would show up with the nicest Colt Vista on ANY continent!! Though we both agree this is a NO!-car, unpredictable things do happen in car trends – 20 years ago; who would’ve thought anyone paying big $ for Pintos, Pacers/Gremlins, VW buses, Chevettes, any Jap RWD or 50s/60s US wagons?

        Again, considering seller’s asking this one will collect dust for another 32 years, but I may be wrong. I just don’t hope we reach a point where any ‘old’ uninteresting car gets the ‘vintage’ stamp…

        Like 5
  6. Karl

    These things disintegrated here in Ct. ! That and these being an economy car meant they weren’t usually taken car of and most had an early trip to the junkyard.
    People usually complain about 70’s car design and performance, but to me, the 80’s for the most part were far worse !

    Like 5
    • Brakeservo

      At least it’s very easy and legal to import but probably impossible to register in California and many other places with mandatory smog inspections.

      Like 0
  7. Bakyrdhero

    Original MSRP 11-12k. NADA now around 3k mint. I don’t know what to say. I do like that interior. I wonder if 80’s interiors didn’t hold up to well because they were experimenting with new materials? Plastic replacing the tried and true steel dashboards. Seems like Japanese makes in particular didn’t hold up well inside or out.

    Like 4
  8. Coventrycat

    OMG! I’ve been looking for one of these!!!! Said no one,ever.

    Like 15
  9. Alexander

    NPR’s “Car Talk” hosts, “Click and Clack the Tappet Brothers” (a.k.a. Tom and Ray Magliozzi), made a LONG-running joke of one of them owning a 1986 Colt Vista. Which always rubbed me the wrong way, because my then-girlfriend, a lifetime friend, ended up with one new in March 1986 after the Nissan dealer blew her off when she shopped for a (roomier) Sentra.

    Now, never mind that with a decent load the acceleration is measured with a calendar. That thing averaged 32-35 mpg! That car saw her through graduate school in Texas, two relocations, Maryland winters, and more–and even got her home safely after an ice-caused accident smashed in the front end several states from home, without overheating. She got about 190K out of it before a terminal engine ailment ca. 1998. Had I owned it, knowing then what another 23 years of owning and fixing Saturn S-Series cars has taught me, that thing might still be alive now. (Which, sadly, she no longer is.)

    I ended up with a 1986 Plymouth Colt hatchback, and matched her–190K before a blown head gasket in 1996 (hauling locomotive parts to a museum, no less).

    My best laugh: someone struck her passenger side mirror and broke it off around 1992. I appointed myself to try and find a replacement (before online shopping, cell phones, etc.) and found the one junkyard where Mitsubishi cars gravitated to in my state, 50 miles away. There were SEVENTEEN 1980s-vintage Vistas there ALL with smashed or missing mirrors.

    Three weeks later, I was walking through another mile-away-from-home junkyard looking for a part for my Colt which someone else had damaged. I walked past a Vista that, by all appearances, had been rolled completely over at least once–but the passenger side mirror was perfectly intact! People looked a bit strangely at me jumping and cheering next to a rolled-over Vista!

    One last point: The car had three rows of seats if needed (only midgets or kids qualified for the back row), and if you folded down the seat cushions the right way the back doubled as a bed, by design………..

    You know, if this were in the States, matched U.S. specs, and I had the money, I might just have tried haggling with them………….

    Like 20
  10. Bakyrdhero

    Great story Alexander! No matter what kind of car, someone has a story. Gotta love Barn Finds.

    Like 8
  11. Steve

    This monstrosity is the reason my 1991 Olds wagon is a “Custom Cruiser” instead of a “Vista Cruiser” like the olds mwagons of the 70’s!

    Like 1
  12. Steve

    Yep this is the one made famous by click and clack, minus the can’t do without five speed stick. The automatic is a ball and chain around the neck of this car.

    Like 4
  13. Jonathan Q Higgins.

    I remember going with my father for a test drive in one of these. A five speed. It doesn’t surprise me why this didn’t sell. An automatic doesn’t do it any favors.

    Like 1
  14. Michael Herrema

    This factory-fresh little golden nugget was actually won as a prize on an epidode of Family Double Dare, back in 1988. For some unkown (or perhaps painfully obvious) reason, the winner never showed to claim their brand new Colt Vista. Harvey the announcer felt incredibly dissed, never wanted to see the car again, and the rest as they say, is history. Until just a few years ago, that is. After languishing for decades inside a sealed Universal Studios storage vault, the car was adopted by a kind-hearted Dutchman keen on new-never-sold Dodge Colts. He put the remaining 70 miles on the car, soon realized his dilemma, then swiftly put the car up for sale again.

    And so here we have it. Not just a Dodge Colt (and a Vista at that!), but an early forebear to the vehicle genre we now all know and love, yep- you got it… the CROSS-OVER UTILITY VEHICLE!! 4-cylinfer FWD econobox roots? Check. Chair-high seating with lots of glass? Check. A third row? Hell yeah. Four real doors? This ain’t no minivan! AWD? Yessiree, just an option away. Colt Vistas had peers too. The Honda Civic Wag-O-Van, the Nissan Stanza Van, Black-and-Decker’s Dustbuster… Wait, but why are crossovers so significant? Go ask Ford about the next sedan they’re about to start selling…

    What a great find, and I say that with sincerity. This vehicle will never be worth anything too significant, but that’s not the point. It’s a time capsule that takes somone back to another place and time. For me, that would be the late 80s when you’d see them on the road with the same frequency that you’d see perhaps a Mitsubishi Outlander on the road these days. Not everywhere, but still plenty all around. And of the former, every single one built seems to have vaporized (or oxidized) into an oblivion. This vehicle, however, has clearly survived the test of time, and deserves to be in a museum. Not as an automobile necessarily (let’s not get too crazy now) but certainly an artifact of late 1980s working-class suburbia in the USA. I can remember at least a few families who had one. Everyday-memories galore. Thanks for sharing!

    Like 3
  15. brien

    I had two of them… one in this color.. LOVED them!! Only car I ever had that I could put outside air through the side dash vent while having forced air heat to the floor [and I think defrost]. Wish it was in the states and at a slightly cheaper price.

    Like 0
  16. 434jeff

    To bad its not a Subaru

    Like 0
  17. MitsubishiChariot

    I see a lot of the 1st generation Outlander in these. Its funny how my uncle had a brown color
    Colt Vista just like this sparking my love for Mitsubishi and now I have a Quartz brown 2016 Outlander. I previously owned a montero sport as well but that was more of an SUV than a wagon/crossover.

    Considering most cars are sold larger now, they really were just the beginnings of crossovers in an era that they were overlooked because minivans were so up and coming. Most practical family crossovers today still serve that minivan purpose mixed with a station wagon just in variois sizes ie. Outlander, Sorento, Santa Fe, Outback, new Pathfinders and Pilots too.

    Like 0

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