Tri-Diamond Days: 38k-mile 1988 Mitsubishi Galant Sigma LX
I love you, ebay motors.
Only there do impossibly immaculate twenty-something year old cars show up with fifty high resolution photographs documenting every angle inside and out.
Who cares if a presumably tiny percentage of ebay motors auctions actually result in a sale, given how legally non-binding the format is?
It's the world's best and mot entertaining car show, and it never ends.
Such is the case with this ridiculously pristine 1988 Mitsubishi Galant. I didn't even know there was a Galant in '88. When most Americans think of a Galant, they think of a dinged up economy car from the 90s and 00s that their neighbor is driving into the ground. No better, no worse, and (perhaps most fatal) no more interesting than your average Taurus, Camry of Accord.
That's how most Japanese cars were in the 1990s. Manufacturers cut costs and dumbed their cars down. And the American middle class bought them in droves.
In the 1980s, however, there was clearly a much different school of thought reigning. Japanese manufacturers were still emerging and competing on a relatively even playing field. Any car could become what the Camry and Accord have become today (which is, unfortunately, still nothing great, and now just overpriced). Their cars offered efficient engines, a plethora of interior gadgets and chiclet buttons to satisfy even the most geeky of tech-heads, and solid build quality all at affordable prices. Stylists were designing the cars if they were still auditioning for a background spot in Blade Runner. There was just something cool and slightly avant garde about them I can't quite put my finger on. Is it details like the latticework rear taillights? Or the overall obsession with rectangular shape forms? There is something at once generic and yet infinitely ornate about them.
Mitsubishi clearly felt they were on to something with the Galant, especially for 1988. The nameplate has been used for nine generations of cars. This is a fifth generation example, which were produced from 1983-1989. It was also the first Galant to feature front-wheel drive, which it has remained (although 4WD has been an option). This example is nicely powered by a 3.0-litre 6-cylinder engine.
The seller of this example is a dealer, so we're sadly not privy to any kind of loving story one would expect from the original owner of a 1988 Galant with only 38,992 miles on it.
However, the dealer does say the vehicle runs and drives great and has never been "smoked in" (just how do they know that, anyways?). They say the body is straight, the paint glossy and there is absolutely no rust.
The vehicle really begs for a big confessional by the original owner. Just who barely drives their 1988 Mitsubishi Galant over the span of 24 years? And when they did drive it, they never smoked in it, trashed it, crashed it, or drove it excessively on wet salty roads. Job well done.
I rarely say this about the cars I blog about to avoid being cliche (even though I secretly believe it), but this thing really does belong in a modern car museum, maybe one that specializes in Japanese cars. Is there even such a thing? Before you blink, there might not be any 5th generation Galants left.
Fortunately, I have a feeling this one will be around for a long time. And that makes me very happy.
Find it here on ebay in Philadelpha, Pennsylvania for a buy it now of $7,995 and a the make an offer option.