TOP＞Stock List＞1979model Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell
Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell
A super rare car in mint condition! This is a true survivor—impressive that it has been preserved so well! With playful features and versatile usage, the 1979 Plymouth Arrow Pickup with a camper shell, boasting a mere 24,842 miles on its all-original odometer, is a one-of-a-kind vintage camper exuding the essence of the '70s.
In 1979, a Plymouth Arrow Long Bed Pickup was sold to a customer by a dealer named “Krehenbiel” in Rochelle, Illinois, which was a Chrysler Plymouth dealer at the time. The customer, based on their preference, had a “TRAV-A-CAP” camper shell installed at a truck outfitting specialist called “G-CAPS” located at the intersection of Illinois Route 72 and Route 251 in Davis, Illinois. Over the next 36 years, the vehicle, with approximately 21,000 miles under the ownership of a single individual, remained in almost unchanged condition from its original paint to interior. It was stored in places like a barn where sunlight didn’t reach, and it was meticulously maintained, never being casually used by pickup truck enthusiasts.
Later, in 2015, this Plymouth Arrow Camper Shell was discovered in Clarkrange, Tennessee, approximately 560 miles south of Rochelle, Illinois. Clarkrange is a small town with a population of about 600, where 97% of residents are white. The Plymouth Arrow Camper Shell was found in a perfectly preserved condition, unchanged from its original appearance. It gained recognition for its rarity as a vintage car that maintained its original form, especially among American pickup truck enthusiasts. The vehicle was featured on the well-known American classic car private sale site, Bring-a-Trailer.
You can see the listing from that time on Bring-A-Trailer [Link]: https://bringatrailer.com/2015/07/20/one-owner-21k-mile-1980-plymouth-arrow-pick-up/
The Plymouth Arrow Pickup was manufactured by Mitsubishi Motors from 1979 to 1982 at the Sakahogi Plant in Gifu Prefecture, the birthplace of the Pajero. It was exported and sold in the North American market under the Plymouth brand by Chrysler Corporation as a compact pickup.
After some twists of fate, this rare specimen, having crossed the ocean once again, returned to Japan. Significant expenses were incurred for inspections, and in March 2016, it was registered domestically for the first time. There are likely very few Plymouth Arrow Pickups still in existence in Japan, and with the distinctive camper shell, this particular one is undoubtedly unique!
Suddenly, a very distinctive vintage camper, in superb mint condition, appeared in Japan! As you can easily verify, a well-known director and TV producer noticed this Plymouth Arrow Camper Shell as a “treasure discovery” in a certain project, promptly purchased it, and the history was featured on platforms like YouTube.
The Plymouth Arrow Pickup, originally a “commercial vehicle” at the time of its release, transformed into a vintage camper reminiscent of the “70s American casual” style after nearly half a century in America. For detailed information on how this distinctive vehicle underwent further enhancements, including the installation of a hanging cooler, please check the following YouTube links:
[Plymouth Arrow] Major issue occurred!!! Encountered a treasure car from 42 years ago!
[Plymouth Arrow] I bought that car with dreams expanding!
[Plymouth Arrow for sale!?] Drive to Shonan as it might be the last run!
[Plymouth Arrow for sale!!] Delivered Plymouth Arrow to the newly opened store!
A rare pickup adorned with a distinctive camper shell, this mint condition vehicle truly stands as a one-of-a-kind gem! Unquestionably, it is the epitome of uniqueness and perfection—a vehicle that is absolutely unparalleled. With its unique camper shell, this pickup is undoubtedly the ultimate choice for stylish outdoor activities such as camping.
Before conducting the interview, I had the pleasure of gathering the aforementioned information from the owner in advance. On the day of the interview, I eagerly headed to the agreed-upon location.
Today, the remarkably innovative overall form of the Plymouth Arrow appears before me, a wedge shape that dominated the sharp-edged automotive design of the 70s. With its long bed accommodating a cabin with distinctive cruiser-like multi-faceted glass, this vehicle is a representation of 70s American casual vibes.
Benefiting from the long bed, the ivory-white body shows no signs of fading. Retro and psychedelic color tones expressed through blue, red, orange, and yellow stripes on side decals symbolize the 70s era. These decals, retaining their vibrant colors, exude a vintage feel that, despite the simple shape, sets it apart from modern vehicles, captivating all observers.
Stepping into the cabin reveals a parallel world where the brain struggles to accept the fact that 44 years have passed since its production. Classic delicate steering, square-designed meters with 70s fonts on the meter nacelle, and the flavorful, old-fashioned twin-dial radio and air control—combined with bench seats and door panels retaining the checkered pattern of 70s earth colors—all create an atmosphere that transports one back to the days when this vehicle was first released.
Opening the rear gate, a cloth cover protects the original floor, which remains exceptionally clean. Inside the fiberglass shell covering the long bed, there is a space comfortably accommodating two adults for sleeping. The camper shell provides a dreamy space for activities such as stargazing through the multi-faceted glass roof at campsites, enhancing the unique essence of this camper.
Opening the engine compartment, one wonders how it has been kept in such pristine condition. The air cleaner case and other components appear almost new, with Chrysler plaques that seem recently installed. Although the heat shield on the exhaust manifold shows slight signs of aging, the Mitsubishi Astron G52B engine itself remains completely original and in excellent condition. The engine, known for its good throttle response and resilient flat torque, garnered praise in the late 1970s when Mitsubishi Jeeps became more popular among general users.
Stickers around the rear gate narrate the history of this pickup, ranging from dealership stickers from the time of sale to decals from the local shop that installed the distinctive camper shell. Notably, the sticker on the lower right of the rear hatch, “A man and his truck, it’s a beautiful thing,” along with the remarkably fresh appearance, provides deeper insight into the feelings of the first owner who owned this long-bed pickup for 36 years.
The 1979 Plymouth Arrow Camper Shell has been elevated to a special status not only due to its features but also against the backdrop of the demand for compact pickups in North America during that time.
After the oil shock of 1973 and the subsequent sharp rise in gasoline prices, even the Americans who loved high-displacement muscle cars were understandably worn out. The majority of the population, faced with skyrocketing fuel costs, began reconsidering their allegiance to domestic cars and started contemplating the purchase of smaller, more fuel-efficient imported vehicles.
The Plymouth Arrow, released by Chrysler, initially introduced its GT model in 1976, which shared the platform with the Mitsubishi Lancer Celeste and was sold in the United States. Three years later, in 1979, Chrysler aimed to strengthen its sales of compact pickup trucks and sought collaboration with Mitsubishi. It was in this context, six years after the oil shock, that the Plymouth Arrow Pickup was introduced to the North American market.
Interestingly, rival companies in Detroit, such as Chevrolet and Ford, responded promptly to market trends immediately following the oil shock. Ford partnered with Mazda to release the Ford Courier for the North American market, while Chevrolet collaborated with Isuzu to introduce the Chevrolet LUV. The Plymouth Arrow Pickup, though a latecomer, took advantage of its timing and implemented effective bench marketing. With a Mitsubishi-made 2.0L 4-cylinder engine producing a substantial 93 horsepower—surpassing the meager 80 horsepower of competitors like the Chevrolet LUV and Ford Courier at the time—and equipped with a 2-meter-long long bed and a payload capacity of 635 kg, the Plymouth Arrow Pickup surpassed its early rivals by a considerable margin.
Despite its simple rear-wheel-drive layout with leaf springs at the rear and MacPherson struts at the front, the lightweight body contributed to impressive fuel efficiency. This efficiency helped dispel the image of Chrysler’s Plymouth as a muscle car with large-displacement engines, capturing the attention of potential customers who may not have paid much attention to Chrysler dealerships.
Although the Plymouth Arrow Pickup was discontinued after only four years, with the last model in 1982, its short production period and limited numbers produced made it a rarity among American truck enthusiasts. Despite being a commercial vehicle often subjected to rough use in work-related activities, this particular specimen’s exceptional mint condition elevated its status as an extremely valuable vintage pickup when discovered in 2015.
This mint vintage camper became a cherished member of the family through the owner's considerate heart towards their spouse. Similarly, with profound love and a compassionate spirit towards the family, its value is passed down through generations.
“A couple, much like camping, rides in this 1979 Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell. The owners, who graciously participated in the interview, are a highly sensitive and delightful couple who enjoy appreciating vintage and antique items. A few years ago, they moved to Gunma Prefecture, surrounded by natural surroundings, to care for the husband’s parents. Particularly, the wife, born in Tokyo and raised in the city, moved without any complaints to Gunma, where she had no friends or acquaintances, solely for the sake of her parents. The reason behind purchasing the 1979 Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell was to enrich their lives and actively enjoy the nature-rich lifestyle unique to Gunma during the brief moments between caregiving responsibilities.
During caregiving, the couple actively incorporated the Plymouth Arrow into their lives, using it to enjoy camping and outdoor activities together. The floor of the beautifully maintained long-bed truck, as seen in the 50th photo at the end, is covered with a thick cloth to prevent scratches, with camping equipment neatly arranged. The enthusiasm to “actively enjoy the lifestyle” is evident and truly wonderful.
This Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell perfectly suits the couple’s lifestyle, and although it may seem that the enthusiast husband was the one who chose it, there is yet another “considerate story” behind it. In pursuit of enjoying the brief outdoor moments in the greenery of Gunma, the couple had been exploring various cars for outdoor activities, such as Hiace Campers. It was during this time that, by a truly coincidental turn of events, the wife happened to watch a program hosted by a certain famous TV personality and producer. Despite not being particularly interested in cars, let alone vintage ones, the wife suddenly exclaimed, ‘This car is fantastic; I like it!’ The vintage American casual vibe from the ’70s stimulated her sensibilities, and with those words, the determined husband felt a strong sense of agreement. With gratitude towards his wife, he promptly made inquiries, successfully purchased the vintage camper, and welcomed it into the family.
A small pickup that crossed the ocean 45 years ago, after a long life in America, took a twist of fate to end up in the hands of a very sensitive couple in Gunma. Under the meticulous care of its owners, it remains off the public roads on days with bad weather, truly cherished and treasured.
When the author observed it during the interview, the question that came to mind was, ‘How is it possible to maintain this condition for such a long time?’ The impeccable condition and the vintage aura of the 1979 Plymouth Arrow made the author suggest multiple times to the owners, ‘Isn’t it better not to part with it?’
The owners, who hold their parents dear, explained that they had prepared camping gear, set it up practically, but due to unforeseen circumstances, they are now dedicated to caregiving. As their parents can no longer use the car and they need a vehicle for four people, they reluctantly decided to part with it, driven by a heart-wrenching decision.
Changes in lifestyle come suddenly for everyone in life. The husband’s considerate words, spoken throughout, moved the heart, leading to the compilation of this manuscript.
The 1979 Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell, which attracted a fateful destiny, is now seeking its next sincere owner. Cherished by various stories and generations of owners for a long time, it has significantly colored their lives. Surely, in its next destination, it will enrich the owner’s life in a profound and vibrant way. This is truly the ‘one-of-a-kind vehicle that you can’t find by searching, but must wait for—a unique encounter.’ That’s the sentiment.”
After the Coverage: 1979 Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell
The Sentiments of the Owner Couple… With the inclusion of valuable research into the history of this unique specimen, the manuscript naturally took on a powerful and splendid tone. Vintage and antique items, often referred to as treasures, undoubtedly outlive humans. The purpose of such items is to significantly enrich the lives of their owners. The true benefit for the owners involved in such items lies in enjoying the process of maintaining the current state and, perhaps, improving it further. This, I believe, is the essence of dealing with vintage and antique items over the years.
This 1979 Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell, too, seems to be a vehicle that brings joy to its owners as they engage in the process. Occasionally participating in classic car shows and receiving awards reflects the fruits of their efforts. In the presence of the author, the 1979 Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell stands quietly, emitting a unique aura. It sparks anticipation for what lies ahead and leaves one eager to witness its future developments.
The journey of this ’79 Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell, embraced with enthusiasm and effort by its owners, adds a layer of intrigue that captivates the observer. It is, indeed, a vehicle that not only has a rich history but also promises an exciting future. As the manuscript took shape, it became clear that this vehicle is more than just a mode of transportation; it is a tangible manifestation of the passions and joys that come with owning and preserving a piece of automotive history.
A Mint Condition of an Ultra-Rare Car! This is a true survivor—how wonderful that it has been preserved! Brimming with playfulness and versatile in its usage, this 1979 Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell in full original condition with a mere 24,842 miles on the odometer is the epitome of a vintage camper exuding the unmistakable aroma of the '70s. It stands as a one-of-a-kind vintage camper, allowing for boundless creativity and carefree enjoyment.
Please do come for an extraordinary vintage tour… Make your way to Gunma Prefecture. Your presence will be most welcome!
This incredibly captivating '1979 Plymouth Arrow Pickup Camper Shell' is currently located in Gunma Prefecture.
As it is a private transaction, there are no consumption taxes or additional fees involved. However, the pro-rated settlement of automobile tax and the recycling deposit will be the responsibility of the buyer upon the purchase of the vehicle. Transportation arrangements, including land transport, will also be the responsibility of the buyer. Nevertheless, I, as the author, am engaged in corporate activities and offer classic car transportation services using our company-owned transport vehicles. If you have any preferences, please feel free to discuss.
The vehicle featured on this page is listed on the cross-border EC site for classic cars and collectible cars, ‘Estate Sale Supremacy®︎.’
What is an Estate Sale Supremacy?
‘Estate Sale Supremacy®︎’ introduces cars cherished by owners through interviews, manuscripts, and videos, embodying the Japanese version of North American culture’s estate sale—a supreme and top-tier estate sale. Different from the bargain bin approach with items and memories being practically given away, ‘Estate Sale Supremacy®︎’ earnestly expresses the owner’s sentiments, ensuring a meticulous handover of memories to the next generation.
Detailed interviews have been conducted with the current owner, encompassing past maintenance records, repair histories, and even investigating the presence of accidents. If there is a significant accident history or if the current owner’s ownership history is extremely short and details are unclear, we may decline the interview and implement measures to provide as much reassurance as possible to prospective buyers.
This article was crafted based on an interview with the owner conducted on Saturday, December 9, 2023, starting at 10:00 AM, under clear skies, with approximately 3 hours of interviewing time. Given the constraints of the allotted time, it may not guarantee 100% accuracy in describing the current condition of the vehicle, and not all aspects of the content have been corroborated. Please be aware that comments about the condition are based on the weather and circumstances at the time of the interview, as well as the author’s subjective viewpoint.
For inquiries about the featured vehicle or to schedule an on-site inspection, please contact us from the bottom of this page. As this is a transaction between individuals, to prevent casual inquiries, on-site inspections are only available to customers considering the purchase as a serious consideration.
Thank you for your understanding and consideration.”