Almost Original: 1988 Chevrolet K5 Blazer – SOLD!
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January 31, 2023, Update – We confirmed the seller of this “Classifind” deleted their listing, so we’re now able to call this one “SOLD!” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call us directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.
You’d be hard-pressed to find one that’s more iconic than the Chevrolet K5 Blazer among classic square-body SUVs. Classic styling, reliable drivetrains, and respectable capabilities on-road or off; the Blazer is a darling of anyone who loves 1980s vehicle icons. The market has heated up on these and the classic Ford Bronco of the same era, but you can still find a decent one for reasonable money, thanks to high production volumes. The truck featured here today is said to be almost completely original save for a replacement exhaust system, and it looks like a fair deal if it’s as clean as the seller purports it to be. You’ll find this handsome 1988 Chevrolet Blazer last listed in January 2023 on Craigslist in Raleigh, North Carolina, for $19,500. Comparing that price against the Classic.com model guide shows that the seller is asking for well under the going rate, as the guide has pegged the average sale price at almost $30,000:
The K5 Blazer was iconic in more ways than one. For starters, it was the vehicle of choice for good guys and bad dudes in all manners of 1980s films and made-for-TV movies. There was nothing better than seeing a Blazer bash through a white picket fence or a toll booth gate. There was never a moment in pop culture history where the truck was portrayed as dainty or luxurious; it was almost always a bruiser. The appeal of the squarebody design likely means many things to different people, from the aforementioned perception of strength and durability to the near-perfect proportions of a full-size SUV with a short wheelbase. Whatever it is, the Blazer and its main competitor, the Bronco, were able to wedge themselves into motoring history fairly significantly, even going back to the first generations of both models. However, the 1980s edition of the K5 Blazer is the one that is arguably the most recognizable.
The MotorWeek Retro Review YouTube Channel features this test drive of the 1989 K5 Blazer to see improvements had been made over the launch model:
The seller’s truck is one of the few K5 Blazers that hasn’t been overly restored or resto modded. A few years ago, the K5 Blazer began lighting up at major auctions, and there was seemingly a mad dash to acquire and flip or sell one that had been sitting in the garage for years. The market has seemingly leveled out a bit, and a clean K5 is not a guaranteed $4o,000 sale like it was a year ago. The seller’s truck seems like a great value against some of the other survivors we’ve seen at auction, especially since the listing claims that the bodywork is all original with no prior accident damage. The removable top has never been off the truck, and the second owner bought the Blazer in 1991 and has kept it ever since, or at least until the point the seller – who I suspect is the third owner – got his hands on it. The truck has just 155,000 miles on the clock, and the 700 R4 automatic transmission was recently rebuilt. Combined with the reliability and dirt-cheap upkeep of the stock 350 engine, this highly original K5 Blazer should treat its next owner well for some time.
Here’s the seller’s description:
“1988 K5 Blazer $19,500
– 4WD, 5.7L, (350), TBI, 155k miles
– 700R4 automatic trans rebuilt by an excellent family-owned shop
with performance shift kit
– everything else major is original except for stainless
performance exhaust and wearable parts
– solid and very well preserved as you can see
– mostly kept in a dry garage, gently driven
– no accidents, well maintained
– never smoking, never pets
– immaculate original plush red velour seats always covered
– nearly new Michelin tires
– heavy duty front suspension, quad shocks
– never used for heavy off-roading
– Silverado package, ps, pb, pw, cruise, ac
– ac currently needs work, but when tuned it’s ice cold
– engine runs fine and still has great power
oil and coolant always monitored and changed as required
– super reliable
– parts are easily available and dirt cheap
– never had top off
– no suspension modifications
– no body work
– all fenders, doors and bumpers are solid
– 2nd owner, purchased in 1991 and owned entirely in the Raleigh NC area
– never in a salty environment
– solid brakes: shoes, drums, wheel cylinders, calipers, pads, rotors,
front bearings and seals, hoses, master, booster, all new
– super condition for an 88
– very detailed Chilton’s GM repair manual.”
The original square body: is the Chevrolet K5 Blazer the epitome of a classic 4×4 with a removable roof?