Forgotten Fun: 1990 Plymouth Laser RS 55K Survivor – SOLD!
(To stop the slideshow and expand the pictures, click on the current photograph below)
June 22, 2023, Update – We confirmed the seller of this “Classifind” deleted their listing, so we can now 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.
I have a confession to make. I love hatchbacks.
I reflected on the cars I’ve owned. I noticed hatchbacks were the most frequent body style for my daily drivers. I have a long history of owning two-door hatchbacks. My most recent one is Project Risky Business—a 1985 Porsche 928S barn find.
I’ve always found two-door hatchbacks a sporty and practical alternative to a coupe. Yet, as I look around at the new cars available today, the traditional two-door hatchback is all but extinct. You can’t even buy a new Volkswagen Golf in a two-door hatchback, a least not in The U.S.
That was not always the case. “Hot Hatches” were popular in the late 1980s. Almost every car manufacturer had a two-door hatchback in their model range. Even Plymouth, Chrysler’s entry-level line, offered several hatchbacks during the RAD Era (1980-1999).
Chrysler partnered with Mitsubishi. This gave them access to sell Mitsubishi’s rebranded hatchbacks, such as the Colts and Starions. The two companies also created Diamond Star Motors (“DSM”) to build three sporty hatchbacks in the US. This was done to avoid tariffs on Japanese imports which were in effect at the time.
One product of the DSM partnership produced in the Normal, Illinois assembly plant was the Plymouth Laser, which was a badge-engineered twin to the Mitsubishi Eclipse and the Eagle Talon.
We spotted this 55K original mile black 1990 Plymouth Laser RS for sale on Craigslist in June 2023 in Folsom, California. A “slick top” (i.e., no sunroof) featuring a manual transmission, the seller reports the survivor-level low mileage resulted from a period of long-term storage for this always-in-California car. The seller details everything recently completed to ensure this rare 1990 Plymouth Laser RS for sale is ready to drive home anywhere.
Classic.com, the analytics and search engine for the collector car market, is currently offered for $10,500. This guide provides limited auction data for 1990-1994 Plymouth Lasers. Classic.com confirms the ask is on par with this data. Worth noting is that the two sold examples shown were more desirable Turbo RS models. By clicking on the green dots in the graph below, you can navigate to each comparable car sold as a way to help you evaluate the price of the Plymouth Laser for sale featured here:
As a second data point, the Collector Car Market Review Online Tool reveals the seller’s ask is $2,500 above this guide’s #1 “Excellent” appraisal of $8,000.
The 1990 Plymouth Laser RS was a compact sports coupe produced by Chrysler Corporation under its Plymouth brand. Chrysler and Mitsubishi had a joint venture. The Laser RS had many components and design elements that were also seen in the Mitsubishi Eclipse and Eagle Talon.
The Plymouth Laser RS featured a sleek and aerodynamic design that was characteristic of sports coupes of the era. It had a low-slung profile with a sloping hood and a sharply raked windshield. The front end showcased pop-up headlights, a bold grille, and integrated fog lights. The RS model came with 15-inch alloy wheels, body-colored side mirrors, and a rear spoiler for enhanced aerodynamics.
Inside, the Laser RS offered a driver-focused cockpit with a sporty and functional layout. It provided seating for four occupants, with the front seats designed to provide good support during spirited driving. The materials used in the interior were of decent quality for the time, and the overall fit and finish were respectable.
The dashboard had a modern design. It was ergonomic, and the controls and gauges were easy to reach. These features provided the driver with essential information.
The Laser RS was known for its impressive performance capabilities. Base model Lasers were equipped with a 1.8 L four-cylinder engine that produced 92 horsepower. The Laser RS was offered with an optional 2.0 L 16-valve DOHC four-cylinder that provided 135 horsepower.
The RS Turbo was the top model. It had a 2.0 L DOHC 16-valve turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. This engine was rated at 195 horsepower. A 5-speed manual transmission was standard. The RS model also featured a sport-tuned suspension, larger brakes, and a limited-slip differential, further enhancing its performance credentials.
The 1990 Plymouth Laser RS came with a range of features and options to enhance both comfort and convenience. Some of the notable features included power windows and mirrors, air conditioning, cruise control, a tilt steering wheel, and a premium audio system. Optional extras could include a sunroof, leather upholstery, and an upgraded sound system.
In terms of safety, the Laser RS was equipped with features such as anti-lock brakes (ABS), which was a relatively new and advanced safety technology at the time.
The ClassicCars4U YouTube Channel features this 1990 Plymouth Laser Commercial with the late Tina Turner acting as a passive pitch person:
Low mileage survivor cars tend to have their quirks from non-use, particularly with seals in the engine. The seller’s detailed description confirms the engine’s critical seals have been replaced and that all other maintenance is up to date.
You will need to get used to buckling your lap belt. Automatic mouse-track shoulder belts may feel uncomfortable at first. Make sure to close your door after you buckle your belt.
Are you serious about buying the Laser RS? Begin the conversation by contacting the seller using the details found in their Craigslist ad. When you connect, please remember to mention you saw their survivor-quality Plymouth featured here on GuysWithRides.com. Good luck with the purchase!
Here’s the seller’s description:
Only 54,000 original and true miles. It is a TIME-CAPSULE.
Stored away for many years. Bought new @ Swift Dodge in Sacramento California, I have the original window sticker, and all dealer paperwork.
2.OL 4G63 engine- same motor that comes in the original Mitsubishi Evolution in Japan. This is an iconic car, that is very rare. I cannot find a comp for the current market as this is not a car you see everyday.
Clean California Title- in my name. Currently registered until August of this year, and yes- it passed smog with flying colors! Good for 90 days from issuance.
All maintenance is done. When I purchased the car, I immediately had the timing belt, water pump, drive belts, cam seals, crank seals, and all other maintenance done by a well known local enthusiast of these cars, as it all needed to be done due to age. Also- new Michelin Tires.
All fresh fluids, oil, transmission, etc. Ready to roll. Oh, and the A/C is ice cold! Works fantastic on 90 degree days, which is insane!
Asking $10,500 cash. No trades- I think this is a fair price given the rarity and condition. Good luck finding another one like it!”
Show or go: What would you do with this 1990 Plymouth Laser RS for sale? Please comment below and let us know!