Cheap Arrow: 1976 Plymouth Arrow GS

In the spirit of 2019 craigslist ads, the seller has only nine words to say about this 1976 Plymouth Arrow GS, but they have provided more photos than usual so that’s good news. It can be found here on craigslist in Salisbury, Maryland with an asking price of $1,000.

Overall, this looks like a straight Arrow, no pun intended. You can see rust in certain areas and rust-through on the top of the hood is rarely a good omen, but hopefully it’s not terminal rust as is often the case with Japanese cars of this era. The 1976 Plymouth Arrow was a rebadged Mitsubishi Lancer and they were made through 1980. For my money, a rear-wheel-drive car this small is just cool no matter what it is or who made it. I believe that this is an Arrow GS due to the flip-out rear windows, chrome bumpers, wheel lip and sill moldings, among other things. The GS was a $208 option package on top of the base Arrow 160. The GT would be the top model and you can see one parked next to this car.

There are no photos of the passenger side but maybe that’s because it’s parked next to a sweet Plymouth Arrow GT on that side, is that the seller’s car, too? You can see the two-slat louvers on the car for sale which identifies it as a first-year Arrow compared to a later three-slat louver on the GT parked next to this car. Certain collectors look for those things and they may go for a base Arrow or a GS over a GT if it’s a first-year car. I know, the crazy things that car collectors look for, I’m the same way, I would rather have a first-year GS over a later GT.

In this photo, the only one of the interior, the front looks great other than what I’m assuming are seats that are in need of work. The only other interior photo is this one showing the passenger side door panel, which also looks great. I can see a little rust on the bottom edge of the door in that photo and I’d want to look under this one before popping on $1,200 in shipping costs. $1,000 is cheap, though, you can barely get a set of tires for that for your daily driver. Speaking of that, this car needs tires. It also needs an exhaust system. but it runs and drives. I just used six of the seller’s nine words in their listing. 1976 Plymouth Arrow are the other three, in case you were keeping score.

I see some surface rust inside the engine compartment but it looks much nicer than I thought it might after seeing the hole in the hood. You haven’t lived until you’ve pulled a 90-hp Mitsubishi 4G52 inline-four, restored it along with the engine bay, and then put it back in again. That’s what I would do but you already know that I lost my mind a long time ago. I would really like to get a Plymouth Arrow from this era someday, a tiny rear-wheel-drive car really appeals to me. Have any of you owned a Plymouth Arrow?

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Comments

  1. Rube Goldberg

    The Arrow was a good car,( a “GS”,,whistles, who was sportin’ that kind of cash) quite popular, for the 3 or 4 years they were around before they rusted. I think these rusted faster than any other car. Once the front shock towers rusted and collapsed, it was all over. I’d have to think replacement parts are non-existent.

    3
  2. Rusty

    There was one of these for sale in the late 70s in Toledo. Low miles and no rust, but the owner had run out without oil and it needed an engine. He kept the price high enough that I couldn’t be confident of turning a profit on it, so I took a pass. Seemed like a nice car, but I was hot for a Sapporo. Might have taken the risk for one of those. As I recall, both the Arrow and the Sapporo were fairly uncommon.

    1
  3. sir mike

    These were great rally cars back in the day….especially with the 2.6 mtr

    4
    • CoDrvr

      Agree. My ’80 “Fire Arrow” with 2.6 and 5-Speed had beaucous torque and more than adequate power. With an LSD (out of a Toyota PU) it hooked up in the gravel pretty well.

      2
  4. Mike Hawke

    Me and my Arrow
    Straighter than narrow
    Wherever we go, everyone knows
    It’s me and my Arrow
    Me and my Arrow
    Taking the high road
    Wherever we go, everyone knows
    It’s me and my Arrow

    5
  5. Skorzeny

    I had a 75, I loved it! Fun car.

    2
  6. luke arnott

    I hired one in Atlanta 40 years ago – awful thing to drive!

  7. Gransedan

    Neat little car. I’ve always liked these. Went with a family friend who test drove a new, red ’77 GS with a white interior in the summer of ’77. She ended up buying a red/white interior ’77 Pontiac Ventura hatchback.
    Just a bit of a correction. The Arrow in the background is not a GT but rather a base model with the “Arrow Jet Package” available in ’78 and ’79 if not ’80 as well. From the ’78 brochure: “This brand new package of youth- and action-minded goodies is limited to the basic Arrow 2-door Hatchback– but lets you get unlimited fun out of personalizing your machine. Order the package and you get eye-catching, two-tone orange and black body paint, black bumpers, the grille in orange and the road wheels, too. Dual black racing mirrors, and 165 x 13″ raised white letter radials. All meant to be seen and admired. Then you can take your pick of 12 different decals that say just about anything that’s legal about you and your Arrow. The decals are available as an option only with the Arrow Jet Package. You’ll get a great kick out of doing it yourself, ‘designing’ your exclusive scene stealer. ( ask your dealer about availability.)” The decals included, “No Step” “Caution Restricted Area” “Hot Exhaust” “Air Intake” “30PSI” “Fuel” “Lift” for over the door handle and circular arrows for around the lock cylinder.

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  8. ReTired

    I bought a new GS in ’76. Fun to drive 5 speed, with the “silent shaft” engine. Great car, but it just wasn’t build to last.

    1
  9. Louis Q Chen

    This and their brother COLT were really good cars made by MITSUBISHI Motors. Then Mitsubishi was serious about the American auto market! My good friend bought a ’73 Dodge Colt GT which was a good car for the price of $2100 brand new. The Lancer was basically the same as the Colt except for the FASTBACK design. The only bad thing is that they just die of RUST early in life. My friend’s lasted until 1981. The only reminder of his car was the drive train. As I remember the sheet metal must have came from unused sheet metals from beer can, I recall my friend’s came from Schlitz beer!

  10. JIM

    I had the Gt my first brand new car out of the show room .,thought I was pretty cool and I loved this little car . The arrow had a very reliable engine but was prone to rusting

  11. Wayne

    sir mike and CoDrvr, yes, great rally cars! Driven by Steve Nowicki a Fire Arrow was a production class champion for several years in SCCA Pro-Rally. Strong car with plenty of wheel travel. Just like the earlier Dodge Colts. (Mitsubishi Mirage?). I used to race Steve in ice races and a few Pro-Rallies. (He would be faster than me on the ice, but he never beat me on any rally stage)

    2
  12. Andrew Franks

    I owned a 39 year old Arrow Pickup that I had forever and it ran forever. The weakest link was the transmission, which had to be replaced twice. My son-in-law, a Law Enforcement Officer is now the proud owner, and is restoring it. It’s never leaving the family.

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