This ’91 GMC Syclone has Driven 395 Miles in 25 Years
By and large, automakers think with their wallets. If a car doesn’t yield sizable profits, it simply isn’t built. That said, cars—or should we say trucks—like this prove sometimes automakers do think and act with their hearts, and we’re so very thankful they do.
A supercar of the pickup truck world, this 1991 GMC Syclone is one of just 2,995 built during its solitary year of production (apart from three built in ’92). With a time of naught-to-60 mph in under 5.3 seconds, it was quick, so quick in fact that it dusted a Ferrari 348ts in one very famous Car and Driver test. But this isn’t your average 348ts-clobbering Syclone. Over the past quarter century, this Syclone has covered just 395 miles. Now, it’s inched its way onto eBay, and expectedly it’s not cheap.
As its number plates suggest, this GMC Syclone hasn’t been a North American resident for long. According to the listing, the pickup was one of only a few Syclones built for export, and it spent the majority of its lifespan housed within a car collection in Japan—never to be modified. Outside and in, that story would appear to ring true. While its appearance is Darth Vader cool, what lies under the hood is the real reason for its rarity. The “SyTy” GMC Syclones and Typhoons packed the venerable 4.3-liter Vortec V6, which was then paired with a Mitsubishi turbocharger and Garrett intercooler. 280 horsepower and 360 lb.-ft. of torque were the triumphant byproducts sent to all four wheels through a four-speed automatic and Borg Warner 35/65 torque-split all-wheel drive system. Speed ensued shortly after.
Amazing performers, these were. Amazing for truck stuff? Not quite. The Syclone was approved for a minuscule 500 pound cargo capacity and towing was frankly out of the question. But really, no one cared. This was the fastest accelerating vehicle of 1991. Like this one? Its journey from Japan has led to Erie, Pennsylvania, where it asks a tall $52,500.