Pick of the Day: 1984 GMC Caballero

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GMC Caballero is an unfamiliar name for a familiar vehicle

The Chevrolet El Camino is an iconic piece of classic car fandom, part of the lore being its regal Spanish name. The car/pickup truck based on Australian “utes” was first brought out by Chevrolet as a 1959 model, a gorgeously Rococo design based on the Impala.

It wasn’t until 1971 that GMC dealers got their own, nearly identical version to sell. But it was marketed with a decidedly unsexy name, Sprint, which compared poorly with the glamorous El Camino brand.

Finally, GMC came out with an evocative Spanish-language name for its 1978 car-based pickup: Caballero. Although the literal meaning in English is horseman, Caballero is generally used by Spanish speakers as the equivalent of gentleman. That’s soundly appropriate since the Caballero (and the El Camino) was designed to be a gentleman’s pickup truck.

The GMC pickup looks very clean under its hood

The Pick of the Day is a 1984 GMC Caballero, electric blue with racy white stripes, that has been resto-modded with upgrades that should make it a fun and reliable pickup.

The original 305 cid V8 has been replaced with a 350 with a mild performance cam, headers and Flowmaster dual exhaust, according to the Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, dealer advertising the Caballero on ClassicCars.com.

The pickup is in good running condition, the ad says, with automatic transmission, a new set of brakes (discs up front) and nearly new BF Goodrich T/A radials.

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The interior looks original and in decent condition

The actual mileage in unknown because the dashboard was replaced with modern electronic gauges at the same time as the engine swap, with the tachometer showing 3,300 miles since the transition.

The Caballero looks clean and presentable in the photos and would make for a fine cruiser, especially in its fairly rare GMC configuration that differentiates it from the more-common Chevy version.

The asking price seems reasonable at $15,000. Ownership plus: watching the puzzled looks as you tell folks that you drive a Caballero.

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day

 

 

 

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Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.

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