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Old 11-10-2012, 03:14 PM
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Chevrolet Caprice (3rd gen) 1977-1990

Third generation

The 1977 Caprice Classic was drastically downsized, which reduced its weight and exterior dimensions, while increasing headroom, rear seat legroom and trunk space compared to 1976 models. GM called its downsizing program Project 77 and invested $600 million to develop the most changed full-size Chevrolet to date. The weight reductions from the 1976 models were 611 lb (277 kg) for coupes, 637 lb (289 kg) for sedans and 871 lb (395 kg) for wagons. The 1977 The Caprice coupe and sedan were over 10 inches (250 mm) shorter while the wagon was 14 inches (360 mm) shorter. Wheelbases were reduced to 116 inches (2,900 mm) from 121.5 inches (3,090 mm) for coupes and sedans and 125 inches (3,200 mm) for wagons. Width was reduced by 4 inches (100 mm) for sedans and coupes; the wagon's width remained virtually unchanged. Heights were increased by 2.5 inches (64 mm) and trunk capacities were increased to 20.9 cubic feet (0.59 m3) for sedans and 19.8 cubic feet (0.56 m3) for coupes.

Although by modern standards the 1977 downsized Chevrolet cars are quite large, the new Chevrolet had exterior dimensions closer to the intermediates of its day. In fact the 1977 Caprice shared the same 116-inch (2,900 mm) wheelbase of the intermediate sized Chevrolet Chevelle, and 1977 marked the first, and only, year in history that a midsized car, the Monte Carlo, was larger than a full sized car.. The introduction of such a small full-size car was considered quite a risk for General Motors. To help ensure the car was a success, preview clinics were held by Chevrolet which returned very positive results. Furthermore, the design process for this car was revolutionized. No longer would the design be focused towards the longer, lower, wider trend the GM had followed for many years. Designers started with a passenger compartment that had as much or more headroom and overall legroom as the 1976 full-size models and then worked outward to the exterior. Wind tunnel testing was used to help define the shape of the new Chevrolet rather than fix aerodynamic problems that cropped up after the design was completed as in previous years.

Ford would respond with advertising the Ford LTD traditional full-size attributes. In 1979 Ford released a true downsized full-size car with the introduction of the 1979 Ford LTD. Chrysler responded in 1979 when it re-engineered its intermediate B-body cars, and designated them the full-size R-bodies. However, these were not true downsized cars like GM and Ford introduced. 1977 models included a four-door sedan, two-door sedan, six-passenger two-seat station wagon and an eight-passenger three-seat station wagon. All models had window framed doors. No hardtop models were offered.

Two-door models featured a unique rear window that created a semi-fastback. This glass had sharp corners giving it three sides. This was done through "hot-wire" bending process. The Caprice was available as either the "Sport Coupé" or as the "Landau Coupé". The Landau Coupé features a partially covered vinyl roof.

Station wagon models received a new three-way tailgate for 1977; the clamshell tailgate was gone. The three-seat models featured a rear-facing third seat for two occupants making these cars eight-passenger models. The cargo capacity was reduced to 87 cubic feet (2,500 L), and although the station wagon could still carry a 4 ft × 8 ft (1.2 m × 2.4 m) sheet of plywood, this could now only be done with the tailgate down. Station wagons use the coil spring suspension in the rear, as for the sedans and coupés.

All 1977 models were named Caprice Classics. A V8 engine was no longer standard equipment for the first time since 1965. The base engine for 1977 Chevrolet Caprice coupés and sedans was Chevy's long-running 250 cu in (4.1 L) six-cylinder powerplant rated at 110 hp (82 kW). This engine was last available in a full-size Chevy in 1973 in the lower-line Bel Air. Standard on station wagons and optional on other Caprice models was a 145 hp (108 kW) 2-barrel 305 cu in (5.0 L) version of the Chevy's small-block V8. This was the first year the 305 cu in had been used in a full-size Chevrolet; it was first introduced in 1976 in compact and mid-sized Chevrolet lines. A 170 hp (127 kW) 350 cu in (5.7 L) V8 with four-barrel carburetor was now the top engine offering as the larger 400 cu in (6.6 L) and 454 cu in (7.4 L) V8s were discontinued.

With the new lighter weight and smaller engines, Chevrolet promised increase fuel economy without great loss of performance compared to 1976 models. The EPA estimates for 1977 Chevrolet was 17 miles per US gallon (14 L/100 km; 20 mpg-imp) city and 22 miles per US gallon (11 L/100 km; 26 mpg-imp) highway for six-cylinder models. Ford's 1977 LTD was rated at 15 miles per US gallon (16 L/100 km; 18 mpg-imp) city and 19 miles per US gallon (12 L/100 km; 23 mpg-imp) highway with its smallest engine, the 302 cu in (4.9 L) V8. By the same EPA estimates, Plymouth's Gran Fury returned 13 MPG city and 18 MPG highway with the 318 V8. Performance was good when comparing the smaller 1977 Caprice to the 1976 Caprice. A 1976 350 two-bbl powered Chevrolet ran 0–60 in 12.9 seconds, while a 400 powered model ran 10.7 seconds. 1977 models ran 11.4 seconds to 60 mph (97 km/h) with the 305 engine and 10.8 seconds with the 350 engine. Car and Driver tested a 1977 Chevrolet Impala with the 350 engine and 3.08:1 axle running a 9.6 second 0–60 time and obtaining a 117 mph (188 km/h) top speed. The 350 was available with a 2.56:1 axle ratio and a 3.08 axle ratio which may explain the difference in performance times.

The 1977 models became the number one selling car in the United States. (In 1976, the previous generation full-size Chevrolet was the third best seller). More than 660,000 full-size Chevrolets were produced for the 1977 model year, with the most popular model being the four-door Caprice Classic sedan (212,840 produced). By 1978 more than 1 million downsized Chevrolets had been produced. Auto publications agreed with the public reception, with Motor Trend awarding the 1977 Chevrolet Caprice Car of the Year.

Car and Driver declared "Even the most jaded car critics are in fact tripping over each other trying to be the first to anoint this sedan to be the best full-sized Chevrolet ever made." Car and Driver commented on the F41 suspension option which included stiffer springs, larger sway bars wheels and tires to say, "It will make you think your Chevy came from the Black Forest instead of Detroit."

1978 models had minor front and rear styling revisions. The engine line-up remained unchanged, but numerically lower axle ratios were used in an attempt to boost fuel economy. The 305 and 350 engines went from a standard 2.56:1 axle in 1977 (2.73:1 for wagons), to a 2.41:1 axle in 1978 (2.56:1 for wagons). An optional 3.08 axle was also available for 350 powered Caprices. The 305 V8 engine received an aluminum intake manifold which reduced engine weight by 35 pounds. A larger brake booster was also added to help reduce braking effort. New options included a steel sliding moonroof and 40-channel CB radio built into the AM/FM radio.

The 1979 models continued with only minor refinements. Again the front and rear styling was refreshed slightly. The 250 six gained five horsepower, while the 305 V8 lost 15 horsepower (11 kW). The change to the 305 was a result of switching from the larger Rochester 2GC carburetor to the smaller Rochester Dualjet carburetor. The 350 engine was unchanged.
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Old 11-10-2012, 03:17 PM
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1980–1985:
The 1980 Caprice Classic saw its first major revision since the 1977 downsizing. To further improve the fuel economy of the car, efforts were made to reduce weight and improve aerodynamics. The Caprice received all new exterior sheet metal, without drastically changing the look of the car. To improve aerodynamics the hood was tapered lower, while the trunk area was higher. The grille was now an egg crate style while the tail-light panel featured three separate square lights per side. All the doors and components within were redesigned to be lighter, including the window crank mechanisms, which now used a tape drive mechanism. Greater use of aluminum including in bumper reinforcement and in sedan/coupe radiators helped to further reduce the overall weight of the vehicle. 1980 models were approximately 100 pounds (45 kg) lighter than 1979 models.

The new styling increased the trunk capacity of both coupes and sedans to 20.9 cubic feet (0.59 m3). This increase was also partially achieved with a now standard compact spare tire on a 16-inch (410 mm) wheel. A new frame lift jack replaced the bumper mounted model. A larger 25 US gallons (95 l; 21 imp gal) fuel tank was standard equipment in sedans and coupes. Easy-roll radial tires, improved anti-corrosion measures, low friction ball joints and larger front suspension bushings were also new for 1980. Puncture-sealant tires and cornering lights were new options.

The 250 cu in (4.1 L) six, was replaced by a new 90 degree Chevrolet 3.8 L (229 cu in) V6 as the base engine for sedans and coupes. This engine shared the same bore and stoke as the 305 cu in V8. California emission cars used the Buick 3.8 L (231 cu in) V6 engine. The Chevrolet 3.8 L was rated at 115 hp (86 kW) while the Buick V6 engine had a 110 hp (82 kW) rating. Although the 3.8 L V6 had the same horsepower rating as the 250 six used in 1979, the 250 had 25 lb·ft (34 N·m) more torque than the 3.8 L (200 lb·ft vs 175 lb·ft). The 3.8 L V6 did boost Chevrolet Caprice's fuel economy to and EPA estimated 20 miles per US gallon (12 L/100 km; 24 mpg-imp) city and 29 miles per US gallon (8.1 L/100 km; 35 mpg-imp) highway, the highest a full-size Chevrolet had been rated to date.

The base V8 engine was new for 1980. The 4.4 L 267 cu in V8 rated at 115 hp (86 kW) and was the standard engine for station wagons. This engine had a 2-barrel carburetor Rochester Dualjet carburetor, and was not available in California. The 2-barrel carburetor on the 305 cu in (5.0 L) V8 was replaced with a four-barrel increasing the 305's output to 155 hp (116 kW). This was now the most powerful engine option (standard on California station wagons), as the 350 cu in (5.7 L) V8 was no longer available, except as part of the police package option. The Oldsmobile-built 350 cu in Diesel V8 was added to the option list for station wagons. This engine was rated at 105 hp (78 kW) and 205 lb·ft (278 N·m). To further increase fuel economy, all transmissions were equipped with an electronically controlled lock-up torque converter clutch.

1981 models saw only minor revisions. Styling was unchanged other than the grille which remained egg crate style but now had larger sections. Refinements included redesigned front disc brakes for less drag and a translucent plastic master cylinder reservoir. The cruise control became equipped with a resume feature, while wire wheel covers had locking bolts to secure them in place. This was the last year for the Delco GM 40-channel CB radio built into the AM/FM radio option.

The engine line-up remained unchanged, although the 3.8 L 229 cu in V6 was now rated at 110 hp (82 kW) and the 5.0 L 305 cu in V8 was rated at 150 hp (112 kW). All engines were updated with the Computer Command Control (CCC) system which included an electronically metered carburetor. This change occurred in 1980 for California emission cars and did not occur to Canadian emission cars until 1987. A new four-speed automatic overdrive transmission with lock-up torque converter joined the powertrain line-up. This transmission helped boost highway fuel economy, while improving city performance by with a 3.08:1 rear axle ratio. The overdrive transmission was only available with the 305 cu in V8, and was a mandatory option for this engine.

1982 models saw only minor styling revisions. The model line-up was reduced by one, with the Caprice Landau coupe dropped. Remaining were the sedan, sport coupe, six-passenger wagon and the eight-passenger wagon.

The engine line-up and power ratings remained unchanged. The 350 cubic-inch Diesel V8 engine was now available on all models. The automatic overdrive transmission was available with both the 267 cu in (4.4 L) V8 and the 305 cu in V8 engine. This transmission was no longer a mandatory option for the 305 cu in engine, which now came standard with the three-speed automatic (except for California models).

1983 was marked with the fewest models to date. No two-door models were produced, leaving only the four-door and the eight-passenger station wagon, since the 6-passenger wagon also left the line-up. The 4.4 L 267 cu in engine was discontinued, but all other engines remained unchanged. The 305 cu in engine and the automatic overdrive transmission was standard on station wagons. The 350 cu in diesel was available with the automatic overdrive transmission at extra cost, while the 305 cu in V8 came equipped only with the automatic overdrive transmission. The 1983 Chevrolet Caprice Classic was selected on the Car and Driver Ten Best list.

The 1984 model year saw the return of the two-door sport coupe making a three model line-up. Styling remained unchanged. 1984 models were virtually identical to 1981 models. The windshield washer controls were moved from the dashboard to the turn signal stalk to create the multi-stalk. The optional cruise control (which continued to be mounted on the turn signal stalk) now featured acceleration/deceleration in 1 mph (1.6 km/h) increments. An optional Landau package included a vinyl roof, sport mirrors and reveal moldings.

Powertrain availability and power ratings were unchanged for 1984. The 350 cu in diesel engine came standard with an automatic overdrive transmission when equipped in station wagons.

1985 models received minor updates while styling remained unchanged. The interior was updated for 1985, marking its most significant update since 1977. The simulated woodgrain appliqué used on the dash was replaced with a simulated silver metallic appliqué. The shaft-style radio was replaced with a more modern DIN-and-a-half style radio, while the pull-out headlight switch was replaced by a push button style switch. The climate controls were updated with rotary switches for the fan and rear window defroster replacing the toggle style switches. The instruments were updated to have a more modern appearance, with a horizontal speedometer while a round speedometer was included with the optional gauge package.

The engine line-up saw major changes for 1985. The 4.3 L V6 engine (262 cu in) with throttle body fuel injection (RPO LB4) replaced both 3.8 L V6s in 1985 as the base engine for sedans and coupes. The 4.3 L engine was rated at 130 hp (97 kW) and 210 lb·ft (285 N·m), producing 20 hp (15 kW) more than the 229 cu in V6. The 4.3 L V6 shared its bore and stroke with the 350 cu in Chevrolet V8. This engine came standard with a three-speed automatic but was available with the four-speed automatic overdrive transmission. The 5.0 L 305 cu in V8 engine received an electronic spark control and compression was increased from 8.6:1 to 9.5:1. This caused the 305's output to jump to 165 hp (123 kW). The 350 cu in diesel engine remained unchanged, as it was dropped in January.
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Old 11-10-2012, 03:18 PM
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1986–1990:
1986 marked the first major exterior restyle since 1980. The front fascia was restyled to have a more aerodynamic look. The Caprice emblem was no longer a hood ornament, but was an emblem located on the vertical area directly above the grill in the center of the front fascia. A new smaller sleeker grille with prominent vertical chrome divider bars replaced the egg-crate style used in 1985. The rear taillights were restyled to look more modern and detailed, but continued to have three lights per side. The sheet metal remained unchanged; however, the new front and rear restyles updated the appearance of the Caprice.

With the Impala no longer being produced, a new base Caprice four-door model was introduced (similar to the previous Impala). Still available was a four-door sedan, coupe and eight-passenger station wagon, while a new Brougham four-door sedan joined the model line-up. Brougham models featured a 55/45 front seat with armrest, and a new "pillow design" with velour fabrics. Broughams featured woodgrain appliqué on its dash fascia, a dome map light, front-door courtesy lights and 20 oz carpeting. Power window controls for all models moved from the door panel to the armrest for improved ergonomics.

The 4.3 L V6 engine received a 10 hp (7.5 kW) boost, rated at 140 hp (100 kW). The 305 cu in engine was unchanged and remained standard on station wagons. Station wagons built after approximately November 1, 1985 came equipped with the Oldsmobile-built 307 cu in engine. After this point, the 305 cu in was no longer available in station wagons. This engine was used in all GM b-body station wagons from this point on to simplify production. The 307 cu in was equipped with a four-barrel carburetor and was rated at 140 hp (104 kW) and 255 lb·ft (346 N·m). The 350 cu in diesel engine was discontinued.

The 1987 models saw only minor styling revisions after the restyling of the previous year. All models came equipped with new modern composite headlights and a stand-up hood ornament returned. A woodgrain appliqué was used on the dashboards for all models. The model line-up was slightly revised, and now included a base level Caprice eight-passenger wagon, and a Caprice Classic Brougham LS four-door sedan. The Brougham LS featured all the Brougham amenities, plus a padded vinyl roof, opera lights and LS monograms. Leather upholstery was a new available option for Brougham and Brougham LS sedans, which also had a new pillow-style seating design and a folding center armrest in the back seat.

The engine line-up received only minor changes. The 4.3 L V6 and the 305 cu in V8 were updated with roller lifters and center bolt valve covers. The 305 cu in had a 5 hp (3.7 kW) rating increase and was now rated at 170 hp (127 kW) and 250 lb·ft (339 N·m). The 307 cu in Oldsmobile-built V8 remained unchanged and was the only available engine for the station wagons. Some Canadian-sold Chevrolet Caprice sedans used the 307 cu in Oldsmobile-built V8 in place of the Chevrolet-built 305 cu in engine during the 1987 model year.

The 1988 model line-up was revised, with sport coupe dropped due to low sales. The station wagon line-up was reduced to one model, an eight-passenger wagon. Engines remained unchanged, but the four-speed automatic overdrive transmission was standard on all engines and models. Standard equipment for all models included tinted glass, a remote-control driver's mirror, automatic headlight on/off, and an AM/FM stereo.

1989 marked the first year of a fuel-injected V8 engine. The Ford LTD Crown Victoria had been equipped with fuel injection on its V8s since 1983. The 305 cu in V8 was updated with throttle body electronic fuel-injection (RPO LO3), first introduced in 1987 on Chevrolet/GMC pickups and vans. This engine was rated at 170 hp (127 kW) and 255 lb·ft (346 N·m), which was only a slight increase in torque over the carbureted engine. However, the cold weather starts, drivability, fuel economy and emissions were all improved as a result of fuel injection. The 4.3 L V6 was no longer the base engine, and was now only available in taxi and police optioned Caprices. The 307 engine remained unchanged for station wagons. Rear-seat passengers received shoulder belts for the outboard positions and air conditioning was standard on all models.

1990 was essentially a carryover year and marked the last year for the downsized body style. New for 1990 were door-mounted front seat belts, quick-connect fuel lines for the 305 cu in engine, and Scotchgard-protected interior fabrics. The door-mounted belts were installed to meet Federal government passive restraint requirements for the 1990 model year. The model line-up and engine line-up were unchanged. The 1990 Caprice was only produced until the end of 1989, when production was shut down to prepare for the redesigned 1991 models.

Source: Wikipedia
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Old 11-10-2012, 03:20 PM
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Chevrolet Caprice (3rd gen) 1977-1990 #4
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Old 11-10-2012, 03:25 PM
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Chevrolet Caprice (3rd gen) 1977-1990 #5
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Old 04-13-2014, 01:34 AM
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Chevrolet Caprice #6
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File Type: jpg chevrolet_caprice_classic_1.jpg (571.4 KB, 1 views)
File Type: jpg chevrolet_caprice_classic_3.jpg (359.0 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg chevrolet_caprice_classic_5.jpg (496.8 KB, 2 views)
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Old 04-13-2014, 01:37 AM
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Chevrolet Caprice #7
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File Type: jpg chevrolet_caprice_classic_45.jpg (285.0 KB, 1 views)
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Old 04-13-2014, 01:38 AM
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Old 04-13-2014, 01:39 AM
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