November 1982

Marketing Material - 1982 Dodge RampageDoes anybody remember the Rampage (and it’s lesser-known, single-year-production Plymouth equivalent)? I don’t see many on the roads anymore.

This particular ad is for the so-called sports model. Dodge substantiated that designation by stating that the United States Auto Club had sanctioned the 2.2 model as the only ever Sports Pickup. (That is, until that segment was put on the map by the 454 SS in 1990, but that’s another post.)

A sporty(er) Rampage
1982 Dodge Rampage front leftThe front-wheel-drive Dodge Rampage was produced for three model years; 1982 through 1984. Its Plymouth sibling, the Scamp, was only produced for 1983.

(I looked up the word “scamp”. It means an unscrupulous and often mischievous person, rascal, rogue or scalawag.)

The Rampage was actually a variation of a variation. Here’s what I mean: the Rampage is a two-seat, pick-up version of the Dodge 024 (which was originally called the Omni 024, prior to 1981; but later renamed Charger, as of 1983).

1982 Dodge 024The 024 was itself a variation of Dodge’s four-door hatchback, the Omni (hence its old name, Omni 024). While the standard Omni model was considered frugal transportation, the 024 was a two-door fastback with different styling at the front and the rear.

Unfortunately, the car’s performance did not match its sportier looks; it came equipped with the same engines that powered the frugal transportation version.

Those engines included a 1.7-liter (Volkswagen-sourced) four-cylinder and a 2.2-liter (Chrysler-sourced) four-cylinder. The later was used in the Rampage 2.2 model, shown below.

1982 Dodge Rampage

As the ad indicates, performance was okay for the time. It claims a 6.4 second 0 to 50 MPH run (not exactly sure why they chose “50” MPH).

1982 Dodge Rampage 2.2 adEven though there is no mention of its towing capabilities, they advertise a payload of 1,075 pounds and make mention that it exceeded S-10 by 75 pounds in that regard. That’s quite a claim for a front-wheel-drive, car-based, unibody construction pick-up.

Even though its underpinnings are not what you’d normally find in a truck, it did include a double-walled, all-steel cargo box.

I never cared for the design of these little haulers, however. They had an almost aftermarket look to them; as if they’d been produced by a small company operating out of a large warehouse. The tail lights look like those generic lenses you can buy for a quick repair on a trailer.

In any event, they were interesting and are becoming quite rare, at least those in good condition.

Please visit the photo gallery which has a much larger version of the ad and a couple of other photos.

Continue below to the photo gallery.

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