Giorgetto Giugiaro penned many stunning cars — the Alfa Romeo Giulia Sprint, Ferrari 250 GT, Iso Grifo — but here’s one that’ll throw the old guard at Concorso Italiano into conniptions: the lovely Isuzu 117 Coupe. It almost feels strange to be mentioning an Isuzu — perhaps best known in the US for making the ubiquitous GM box van — for sale in Detroit, but here it is nonetheless.
This particular 117 Coupe is one of the final facelift kouki models, mass produced after Isuzu partnered with GM and modernized the interior with plastic and other bits from the General’s parts bin. These are far less desirable than the early handmade models, which can often sell for upwards of $35,000 to $40,000 in Japan. However, with a price tag of $16,500, it’s still not exactly on the cheap side.
This model is a late XG, meaning it has the far more desirable, and frankly sublime sounding, fuel-injected DOHC 1.8-liter engine. Finding parts in the United States might prove to be a challenge, but Isuzus are pretty bulletproof (I should know, I just drove one across the motherland), and if necessary, you can always overnight parts from Japan.
Unfortunately, the dashboard seems to have the dreaded cracking that has befallen many a JNC, but the excellent condition of the checked pattern rear buckets perhaps makes up for it. The rest of the car is claimed to be mint, and has only 69,785 km (43,362 miles) on the odometer. At $16,500, will it be the one that’ll have your kidney quaking in its boots? The ad can be found on Craigslist.