Four Cars, 64 Valves, One Turbo: Quad Cosworth Vegas!

Whenever we feature Cosworth Vegas on Barn Finds, we find some fans and some detractors of Chevrolet’s import fighter. In this case, there are four of these 16-valve gems being sold for one price here on craigslist. The cars are located in Rochester, New York (I’m kinda partial to that fine city, having been born there) and you can own all four for the asking price of $6,500. Or less, considering it’s a Craigslist ad.

We don’t get a lot in the way of pictures, but the seller does tell us that there are two 1975 and two 1976 cars. And one of those has a turbo. I really wish there was a picture of the turbo installation included, because although I remember aftermarket turbo kits for the standard Vega engine, all I remember being readily available for the Cosworth were carburetor options, such as Weber side drafts, headers and performance camshafts. I wonder why someone decided to go with the two-tone paint scheme on this one? It’s not what I’d do, but the Vega body lines do seem to lend themselves to the red and black.

We have some rust here. It also looks like someone was trying to get a car started with the battery charger. That’s actually a good sign to me–that the seller thinks one would start, or at least turn over. They also state that two of the cars have been on the road “in the last few years.” Another good sign. Although the ad states one of the cars is from the South, which I’m assuming is implying it might be less rusty.

This car has what to me are awful looking aftermarket wheels, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. The spoiler doesn’t look bad, and the decal in the window from the Car Craft Street Machine Nationals brings back a lot of magazine memories for me. I can’t tell what year that one is from, but the artwork (which the cartoon car might even be a Vega) looks like this one from 1978. I’m still not sold on $6,500 for all of them unless the seller can get at least one running, but I’d be interested in knowing more. What do you think?

Fast Finds


  1. Steve65

    The cl ad has already been taken down, so it would appear the seller found a buyer or reconsidered.

  2. Milt

    Nothing says “I’m done” like selling everything in one go.

  3. marlin1893

    The Cosworth Vega came with a factory stainless steel header but as stated a few ended up with dual 48 Webers due to some problems finding repairs for the factory fuel injection. Great little cars I owned both a 75 and 76.

    • C Carl

      Weber’s sounds like a good fix. Personally I’d like to take a shot at the mechanical FI.

      • marlin1893

        It was electronic fuel injection one of the first GM’s out there in 1975, mine ran good but with a crazy pulsing high idle till it warmed up.

  4. Rustytech Member

    I think any time you can pick up 4 cars, even if they are only parts cars for$1625 ea. you got a deal! I alway thought the Vega was a good looking little car, it’s too bad GM didn’t put some more time in development, and produce a better car. I’ve converted many of these to SBC’s they make great hot rods.

    Like 1
  5. marlin1893

    They make great V6 or V8 swaps along with fiberglass kits available back in the late 70s I have owned 8 and love them. This one was a V8 car back in the 80s.

    • DrinkinGasoline

      No offense and with all due respect, I choose to leave the body kits in the past along with the bell bottom jeans and earth shoes. A part of life that one cannot un-live….. :(

      • John T

        I vaguely remember the 70’s … Stayin’ Alive.

      • marlin1893

        Personally I think it looks better than a lot of the tuner crap we have seen over the years. Besides it was race breed from the IMSA days. PS never liked hippies anyway LOL


    That’s funny marlin1893. What are these Vega’s doing right now? Nothing but what they have done best.Rusting in peace. Only someone has prolonged it by keeping them indoors.

    The Vega was NOT a race inspired car. It was an econo car that flopped. As a race car was killed in IMSA the by the Gremlin. A definate death trap with anything bigger then a 4 cyl. My best friends sister got killed in a home brewed V8 conversion Vega. Talk about unsafe at any speed!

    (define a tuner) Are you referring to an Asian car? A modified Asian car that you can modify and reprogram the computer? If so not the same apples to apples. The values are way different. You would need more Vegas to achieve the value of most Honda’s today

    The 70’s variation of Asian car rusted too but one difference. Before they split in half they were still running and had no less then 200 K on the odo.

    • marlin1893

      You crack me up, the Gremlin was a pos from day one and Fugly and the Vega didn’t run IMSA the V8 Monza did. I never said the Vega was race bred just the fiberglass kits were. The ugly huge wings and front/side glass kits on the Asian tuners are what I was referring to. The 75-76 Cosworth Vega was way ahead of the industry with advances still used today. BTW we have pushed the Vega 2.0 dohc to almost 300 hp without turbos or wild electronics and a lot of clean ones are out selling your AMC gremlins today for big bucks. The Vega body was one of the cleanest designs in its day and out handles most of its rivals.

      • AMCFAN

        marlin1893, No, you crack me up. Some advice. Put down your copy of Motor Trends car of the year 1971 issue!

        The Vega is the car that started the downfall of mighty GM. Although the car looks appealing it is short lived and will only work when a modified non original engine is installed. Dealers commonly touched up rust before they could sell them. So you may have to disassemble the whole car and add rust proofing while you are at it.

        The hilarious thing about the King Kong Cosworth’s is they were priced $900 less then the Corvette when new. The HP was only a whopping 110 for your money. A stock Vega put out 80 horsepower. So you could buy two Vega’s for the cost of a Cosworth and gain 30 HP?

        If companies really do follow those same practices today (as you state above) We will certainly see less companies building cars. What a deal I want to pay more for less!.

        For that crazy HP, better look out for those stock Honda Civics….you know the ones with the wings! I have a stock EP3 Civic Hatch with a wing that ran a solid 14.0 in the quarter just messing around at Import day at the strip. If I get serious I could shave more time off of that but it’s OK

        Love the Honda but I’ll hold onto my Gremlin X with the “factory” installed V8 The 304 that was also used in the Javelin. It was engineered for the car as American Motors still thought of performance. Not put there by a backyard mechanic. The only “other” American subcompact car that COULD be ordered with a V8. Ugly or not. Many Vega owners when not broke down or pouring oil saw many a Gremlin 6 and V8 rear end.

        Like 1
    • marlin1893

      You would be a Gremlin fan one of the ugliest cars ever build in the US. By the way the Monza with a 350 or 305 was and still is way more of a car than your Gremlin. I owned them also and they will out handle that AMC any day. BTW a Monza is just a Vega with a V6 or V8 option and lightly redesigned body panels. Have you looked at the prices of Vegas today they are going for big bucks and Cosworths are worth double a stock Vega just like when they were new. Can you rev that stock 304 to 7000 rpm like a Cosworth? Final note why is it AMC isn’t around any more if they were so great ??

  7. chad

    (not seen here) wouldn’t mind the wagon

    • marlin1893

      Had a new GT wagon in 1973, not a bad little car.

  8. ftfixer

    Wow i loved the Vegas I had all models from the start to the last one. I f I remember correctly the Cosworth had your name printed on a plaque on the dash. Do any of them have names on them? In 74 I had an orange wagon I ordered from the factory. ( my dad was a GM exec.) The car was supposed to be two barrel carb but showed up with a single because it would not pass emissions.

  9. marlin1893

    The 24 ct plated plaque on the dash has the car # not the owners name. I owned #210 (in picture) way back in 1977-79 I now have #2466 in my drive :o) The most noticeable driving difference between a GT and a Cosworth was the GT ran out of power just under 5000 rpm gasping for air while the Cosworth was happy revving past 7000 rpm. Night and day between the two cars along with better handling to go with a much better engine. The Cosworth was light and nimble compared to other compact performance cars, many had much heavier engines that hurt the overall balance. With a little tuning they would run very well.

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