The Plymouth Arrow is nearly forgotten today, but the badge engineered Mitsubishi Lancer Celeste had a lot to offer. Its handling was rated quite positively in magazine tests of the era, and Mitsubishi’s signature “silent shaft” technology used a counterbalanced mass to run its inline-four with the smoothness of a straight-six. This 1976 promotional video, however, offers even more reasons to buy one.
For 1976 the Arrow came in three trims and two engine options. A 1.6-liter 4G32 powered the base model Arrow 160 and didn’t come with the silent shaft technology, while a silent shaft-equipped 2.0-liter powered the luxurious Arrow GS and performance-oriented Arrow GT. The silent shaft wasn’t just a gimmick. A demonstration in the video places a glass of water on each engine, and it makes a huge difference.
The video also mentions some Arrow trivia we never knew. For example, if you ordered it with copper paint, you got exclusive matching copper houndstooth seat inserts. Other exterior colors didn’t appear to have this option. The windshield wiper fluid level lamp is located not on the dash, but on an overhead console. The wiper control and turn signal are on the same stalk. Also, there are three gauge pods in the center console but only two gauges, so the third one was repurposed into a coin tray.
Additionally, it’s always interesting to see what commonplace features today were bragged about back in the day: Armrests on the door cards, a 5-speed with overdrive, an illuminated ashtray. There’s a dome light and a reading lamp.
Amazingly, the Arrow weighed just 2,156 pounds. Due to its lightness and aerodynamic shape (by 1976 standards), the Arrow went on to become a popular drag racing and funny car platform. We wish there were more of these that survived, but these days Arrows are incredibly scarce.