One of my favorite cars is a car that I have never seen in the flesh. And I might never see it. You see this car was a special Argentine only car – the Torino. In the 1960s Industrias Kaiser Argentina (IKA) decided to take an American Motors Corporation car, the Rambler American, and blend in some styling modifications by Pinin Farina. The engine was an inline 6-cylinder engine that had been originally designed for Willys. The result of all of this was the IKA Torino shown below.
The IKA Torino
The images in this post come from Volume 1, No. 2 of “Classic Wheels” in 2009, an Argentine car enthusiast magazine that unfortunately might no longer exist. I have a couple of issues of this magazine and found it very informative about classic cars in that car crazy country, home of Fangio and numerous other top race car drivers.
People who might have read posts on this website before might recall that I have said several times that I don’t know why American Motors wasted time and money on the AMC Scrambler, which was the “muscle car” version of the Rambler American. They should have contacted IKA and made a deal to import the Torino into the USA instead. AMC was never going to have a car that was faster than a Camaro, Mustang, or Barracuda, so why did they decide to play “the big three” power game when they could have brought in a car that would have created its own niche?
The IKA Torino Was Very Stylish
The Torino was manufactured from 1966 to 1981. During these years, IKA was purchased by Renault. The Torino car shown in this post in a 1972 model. There were many modifications to the Torino over the years, mostly to the engines and under carriage.
The interior of the Torino is quite tasteful and similar to many high-priced European cars of that era. The Torino was fitted with a 4-speed manual transmission with a floor shifter.
The Torino Interior Was Inviting
The instrument panel has a look to it that is similar to British sports cars, such as the Triumph TR4.
The Instrumental Panel Has No Idiot Lights
The Torino had the “Tornado” 3,800cc inline 6-cylinder engine that was fitted with an overhead camshaft. The engine developed 160 horsepower at 4,300 rpm. Apparently some versions of the Torino had engines that developed over 200 horsepower.
Many Of The Torinos Were Fitted With 3,800cc Six-Cylinder OHC Engines
Not surprisingly Torinos are popular with car enthusiasts in South America. In the day, Torinos set endurance records at the famous Nurburgring track. Nowadays Torinos can often be found competing in rallies in South America.
A Torino Competing In The 19 Capitales Historico In Uruguay
AMC came close to having a Torino-like car as shown by the Rambler Rogue below. However, as I have said AMC should just have imported the Torino and put an AMC badge on it, just the way Pontiac brought in the Australian Holden Monaro performance car and badged it as a Pontiac GTO.
This Rambler Rogue Looks Similar To The IKA Torino
The Rambler Rogue interior also had a look similar to the Torino.
The Rambler Rogue Interior Falls Short Of The Torino Interior
If I had some additional cash lying around, then I would give some consideration to importing one of these Torino cars myself. Probably some people have, but I doubt that many Torinos have found their way into the USA. That is what AMC should have done.
If you have any comments or questions on this post, then leave a comment below or you can send me a private email at the following address: shanna12 at comcast dot com