1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80

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Thread: 1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80

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    News Contributor Premium Member EJD1984's Avatar
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    1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80

    Hemmings Find of the Day 1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80
    Hemmings Daily
    Kurt Ernst
    Aug 22nd, 2014



    In an effort to drum up interest in its fourth-generation Malibu among Southern buyers, Chevrolet launched a special M80 edition of the car in 1980 that borrowed styling cues from muscle cars of a bygone era. Available only in white with blue skunk stripes and side graphics, the 1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80, like this example for sale on Hemmings.com, also sported a front air dam, a rear trunk lid spoiler and steel alloy wheels shod with raised white letter tires. If that was the good news, here was the bad: Under the hood was the exact same 305-cu.in. V-8 that was an available option in the rest of the Malibu lineup, producing just 155 horsepower (although the seller, citing Wikipedia, claims an output of 140 horsepower). What the M80 lacked in output, it made up for in exclusivity, as only 1,901 were assembled, and this example was reportedly restored by a GM engineer in 1999.

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  4. #2
    News Contributor Premium Member EJD1984's Avatar
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    Re: 1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80

    I really like the tasteful looks.

    Just wish it came with a bit more grunt under the hood, but for the era, it's understandable.

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    R2-D2 Astromech Droid Ed753's Avatar
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    Re: 1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80

    Kewl!

    I had a 1978 LeMans that I restored/rebuilt, it came with a 231 V6, and I put a 305 V8 in it.
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    Re: 1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80

    FWIW, my Dad had a 1979 Cutlass Supreme with the 155 hp 4 bbl 305 and -- for the day -- it was pretty snappy. What a lot of people forget is how light these were for their size. Less than 3400 lbs, if memory serves. So think base G6 Camaro light. Yes, it's low on hp, but these were at about 240 lbs ft torque so they still felt reasonably responsive for the time. About 9-ish seconds to 60 with the automatic, maybe a bit less than that with the very rare four-speeds.

    The big deal about these cars were that more motor was only a swap away. This car with an LS swap would scream!

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    6.2 Liter LS9 Supercharged V8 knightfan26917's Avatar
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    Re: 1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80

    NICE!!!!

    Used to know someone who had 1 of these ... got to ride in it, too.


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    Re: 1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80

    Those cars felt fast swinging there 85mph speedometers real fast..LOL!
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    Re: 1980 Chevrolet Malibu M80

    155 HP was pretty decent for a 5 liter V8 by 1980 standards. Note that Chrysler's 318 2BBL put out 120, Ford's FI 302 in the Lincoln's made 130 and Oldsmobile's 307 made 140 with a 4BBL carb so the 305 was fairly healthy. Another factor here is what gearing this car came with. Stock Malibu's came with highway 2.29 rear gears so this car may have had 2.73 or 3.08 cop gears which would certainly pep these cars up a bit more. Also note that aftermarket performance upgrades can easily turn this Small Block into an easy 250 HP engine for not that much coin. We used to get 1970's 2BBL 305's in with worn cams and swap in higher performance versions for 350 cars. This woke up those engine quite a bit and they would easily lay rubber thereafter. The 305 was not a bad mill given the right tune.

    One thing I can't believe they forgot to include on this car is bucket seats and floor shift. Those were readily available on all Malibu coupes from 1978-1981.
    Last edited by ponchoman49; 04-01-2016 at 08:21 AM.

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