A Peek through the Opera Window: Chrysler’s Kitschy, Sad Dealer-Information Video for the TC by Maserati


A Peek through the Opera Window: Chrysler’s Kitschy, Sad Dealer-Information Video for the TC by Maserati

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Chrysler TC by Maserati

While Sergio Marchionne ultimately united a large Italian automaking concern that has a major American outfit, of which’s worth remembering of which Lee Iacocca, Chrysler’s Italian-American CEO throughout the Eighties as well as also a major source of inspiration to Miami Vice’s Izzy Moreno, repeatedly attempted to inject the automotive passions of his ancestral homeland into Chrysler’s product line, starting in 1980 with the Omni-based Dodge DeTomaso, continuing with Chrysler’s 1987 purchase of Lamborghini, as well as also ultimately culminating with the oft-mocked 1989 Chrysler TC by Maserati, the Pentastar’s entry inside the European luxury-convertible sweepstakes.

Chrysler TC by Maserati

At the time, Cadillac was treading the same waters with its Pininfarina-bodied, Hamtramck-assembled Allanté, which utilized a shortened type of GM’s E-Centeng front-drive platform shared with the Toronado, Riviera, as well as also Eldorado. In retrospect, of which’s a little hard to take the General’s troika seriously, although inside the day, they were still considered viable luxury contenders. Remember, Lexus didn’t arrive on the U.S. market until the 1990 type year. The TC also rode on a specialized platform, dubbed Q by Chrysler, which traced its roots back to the K-car as well as also shared much with the Dodge Daytona as well as also Chrysler’s redesigned-for-’87 LeBaron convertible. The TC dispensed with the Chrysler’s headlight covers, trading them for a nose job of which could seem to presage the Maserati Ghibli II of 1992, gained an optional Maserati-assembled type of the 2.2-liter Chrysler Turbo II four-cylinder that has a 16-valve head developed by Cosworth, as well as also came standard that has a removable hardtop featuring a round opera window.

Chrysler TC by Maserati

The lingering question about the TC is actually whether the auto was a cynical marketing exercise or a legitimate—if poorly executed—attempt by Chrysler to build a European-style sporting coupe with genuine Italian flair. of which video, produced by Chrysler to educate dealer service departments about the fresh car, goes a ways toward answering the question. of which’s terribly Midwest-centric—within the first three minutes, the narrator manages to mispronounce “Getrag” (Germany), “Modena” (Italy), as well as also “Benicia” (California)—suggesting of which Chrysler, by its perch in Highland Park, Michigan, truly believed of which the TC was sufficient to compete with vehicles by Germany, England, as well as also its Detroit rivals’ luxury divisions. Why wouldn’t of which be? of which was one of only two cars on the market of which paired American know-how with Italian verve, as well as also the various other was only partly constructed in Italy.

Watching the first part of the video, however, confirms every bias consumers have ever had about dealer service departments. Of of the fresh car’s prospective customers, the narrator admonishes: “In their jobs as well as also their homes, they command respect. When a TC owner comes in to the service department, you should go out of your way to be courteous as well as also helpful.” Because, of course, of which harried mother of a few that has a slipping Voyager transaxle is actually not worthy of the same consideration. She’d invariably be back for at least one more minivan before the kids were grown, as well as also of which’s not as if Honda was building a product inside the segment.



The latter portion of the video focuses on the brave fresh world of the TC’s anti-lock-braking system as well as the intricacies of the convertible top’s adjustment. Fun stuff for TC nerds, although of which’s the intro of which appeals to those of us interested in how the American auto industry threw of which away as well as also the strange, often sad trickle of automobiles of which resulted by 25 years of circling the drain while Japan, Germany, as well as also South Korea flooded our shores with cars of which beat our homegrown machines on value as well as also/or quality. of which’s an instructive document, suggesting of which, in our arrogance, we were bringing a knife we at least half believed was a gun to a firefight with the planet’s hungriest pistoleros.

A Peek through the Opera Window: Chrysler’s Kitschy, Sad Dealer-Information Video for the TC by Maserati

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