No Shelby Signature – 1988 Dodge Aries Turbo

While Chrysler’s K-cars are (for most people) something to be mocked only slightly less mercilessly than a Yugo or Hyundai Excel, it alwaays bears remembering that these cars saved Chrysler’s bacon so it could produce memorable vehicles like the Dodge Dynasty, Chrysler TC by Maserati, and Plymouth PT Cruiser. Oh, and the Viper. And while they weren’t the best cars in the world, they were certainly what America wanted in 1981, selling strongly and providing the basis for many derivatives, including their famous minivan. And if you consider the competition – GM’s X-platform cars, and Ford’s Fox-platform sedans – it’s easy to see why they were able to dig themselves out of their hole with their offering. Let’s check out this 1988 Dodge Aries Turbo for sale for $2000 in Suffolk, NY.

1988 Dodge Aries Turbo left front

Wait, you say, did the proletarian Aries ever come with an interesting powertrain? Well, it didn’t, but thanks to all that careless platform sharing, the Shelby Z did. And that offering was a 2.2-liter turbocharged four-cylinder offering 174hp and 200 lb.-ft. of torque, besting many V8 sports cars of the day. That’s also a massive 74hp and 81 lb.-ft. over stock, so hopefully the builder also grabbed the brakes and suspension from the donor car. At least it has all new tires to get things started.

1988 Dodge Aries Turbo engine

A little searching yielded this for sale posting from 2014. While the pictures are different, the description hasn’t changed, but while the seller says the car wasn’t driven much in the 2014 listing, hopefully this has changed by now – otherwise you’ll probably be looking at resuscitation work. It is said to need a little K-car TLC, though it’s not clear what that is, and as a former New Jersey car it has some rust.

1988 Dodge Aries Turbo interior

The interior has also seen better days, though it is complete, and a good cleaning will probably take it a long way. The forum post also includes a build sheet, indicating that the car had a 5-speed manual from the factory, though it’s now said to have an A555 transaxle (with Getrag internals) from the Shelby. Even with a bit of development needed, it would be a great deal of fun to find a donor car for the remaining parts and put together a true stealth car you don’t have to worry about in any parking lot. What would you do with it?

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One Response to “No Shelby Signature – 1988 Dodge Aries Turbo”

  1. steve in podunk Says:

    that’ll be a hoot once it’s sorted

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