For some of us, the ’80s were a bit of a blur — a storm of acid-washed jeans, synthesizers and Dolph Lundgren’s rise to stardom. When it comes to cars, though, there are a few undeniable and clear-cut icons like the Ferrari F40, Porsche 964 and Lamborghini Countach. But living in those titans’ shadows were lesser-known, yet still incredibly respectable automotive standouts. We found five that might be in your price range, now that you’re not busy wearing sunglasses at night and spending money on Trolls and Alf merch.
1985 BMW M635CSi
What we like: As one of BMW’s first high-performance coupes, the M635CSi set the stage for years to come, and this being a Euro-spec version, it got a 30 horsepower bump over the U.S. spec. This particular example is in impeccable shape and has an extensively documented service history.
From the seller: This 1985 BMW M635CSi is a European-market example powered by a rebuilt M88 inline-six mated to a five-speed manual transmission. The car is said to be California emissions legal with a BAR sticker, and modifications include H&R lowering springs, BBS wheels, a Miller Performance MAF and WAR chip, E34 M5 crank, and updated brakes.
Mileage: 207,699 (rebuilt)
Location: San Luis Obispo, California
1980 Saab 900 Turbo
What we like: It’s an odd green — akin to that fake floral foam you see in craft stores — but, it is a front-wheel-drive, manual-transmission, turbocharged car from the ’80s. How could you not love it?
From the seller: The sale includes documentation from the original owner, including the original window sticker, service invoices, and original parts that were replaced with newer items. Represented by a close friend of the current owner, the car is sold with a clean Ohio title in the current owner’s name.
Location: North Ridgeville, Ohio
1982 Porsche 928
What we like: The 928 isn’t the best-looking Porsche V8 in history, but you can’t deny the star power Tom Cruise imparted onto this car in Risky Business.
From the seller: The car was first sold in Dallas, Texas, and the original owner used it sparingly until selling in 2016 it to the mayor of Oceanside, California. The selling dealer acquired the car two months ago and has serviced the A/C system, added new fluids and performed a full inspection.
Location: Livermore, California
1988 Jeep Grand Wagoneer
What we like: The Wagoneer is considered to be the granddaddy of the Modern SUV, but with the love that this particular Jeep has seen, its age hardly shows.
From the seller: This 1988 Jeep Grand Wagoneer is an unmodified example powered by a 360ci AMC V8 with a three-speed automatic. This example has remained in Texas and Oklahoma from new. The last owner began to refurbish it with a repaint, new woodgrain graphics and trim, and new seat upholstery.
Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
1986 Ford Sierra RS Cosworth
What we like: One of the great homologation specials of the ’80s, the Sierra RS Cosworth is one of the truly great icons of the era. It commands the highest price tag on this list, but if you have the cash, there’s no denying how special this car truly is.
From the seller: The factory turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and five-speed manual gearbox remain unmodified to the seller’s knowledge. 1,064 Sierra RS Cosworths were produced for the 1986 model year and this example is now being offered with some service records documenting prior ownership
Location: Stamford, Connecticut
Raw power and mechanical simplicity versus svelte design and intelligent electronics. Read the Story