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The late 1970s was unquestionably one of the darkest periods in American cultural, political and automotive history. Think about it: The two most popular forms of music in the late 1970s were blaring disco and bad corporate rock. The well-meaning but utterly ineffectual Jimmy Carter was in the White House, Iran held American hostages and there were long lines and high prices at the gas stations. The domestic U.S. auto industry was in a shambles, too, with bad designs, minimal quality control and severely choked horsepower.