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One should never judge a book by its cover. First try scratching the surface, and see what you might unravel.

Granted, there are unlikely to be many classic car enthusiasts who lie awake every night dreaming that they might one day own a Simca Horizon. – or the later Talbot Horizon. – or a Chrysler Horizon for that matter. Same, same. Even so, it’s worth remembering that when the model was first introduced in the summer of 1978, it was actually widely praised for its supple and comfortable ride while still offering quite accomplished handling. So much so that the Horizon was even voted European Car of the Year in 1979! So does that make the Horizon a drop-dead cool classic car? Ehrm… No.

Simca’s advertising department were clearly tripping when they came up with this. Oh, and check out those striped seats – the interior design department had seemingly passed the pipe around the room once or twice too.

But sometimes we really owe ourselves to look beyond – or I suppose in this case that should read, deeper – than that plain and dull wrapper. If we do so, there might just await us a hugely smile-inducing surprise inside. Something cool, something fun.

And that’s precisely why I simply couldn’t keep myself from highlighting this particular 1979 Simca Horizon GLS which is for sale in Denmark: It makes me smile!

Despite a very seventies stripe down the flanks, this dark yellow Horizon really isn’t all that thrilling at first glance. Yes, it’s that plain and dull wrapper which I’m on about. But then swing open the door and get ready to enter a world of seventies funkiness! Whoooaar… it’s a seventies Smarties surprise in full technicolour. Just look at those stripes. Look at those colours. Somehow, the stripy seats even manage to make the exterior decals seem more significant in some weird way. Sure it’s utterly distasteful, but don’t tell me that you’re not smiling right now. Of course you are! Because frankly, it’s hilarious…

The private seller is quite brief in his description, and doesn’t even specify whether it has the 1.3 or 1.5-litre engine. But he claims the Simca is in good condition and that it drives well too. It apparently also comes with a stash of spare parts, and the seller says he is willing to put it through a fresh Danish MOT check. All of which obviously doesn’t matter at all – it’s all about those seats!

I’m sure many of us have tried buying a classic car for sillier reasons. Just think about it – this Simca’s interior will make your life a better place to be. The pleasure won’t even cost you much as it’s currently for sale at a mere Danish Kr. 18,000, which currently equates to approximately £ 2,200 or Euro 2,400. Classic car ownership with a sense of humour just doesn’t come much cheaper than that…

But it would appear that I’m the only one to feel this way about this Horizon and its funky seats. In fact, the same car was featured over on our Danish ViaRETRO site back in July of last year, and it clearly still hasn’t sold. I don’t get it!
Here’s the link to the advert: 1979 Simca Horizon GLS
What say you dear ViaRETRO reader?



With our Saturday instalment of Prime Find of the Week, we’re offering our services to the classic car community, by passing on our favourite classic car for sale from the week that passed. This top-tip might help a first-time-buyer to own his first classic, or it could even be the perfect motivation for a multiple-classic-car-owner to expand his garage with something different. We’ll let us inspire by anything from a cheap project to a stunning concours exotic, and hope that you will do the same.
Just remember – Any Classic is Better than No Classic! We obviously invite our readers to help prospective buyers with your views and maybe even experiences of any given model we feature. Further to that, if you stumble across a classic which you feel we ought to feature as Prime Find of the Week, then please send us a link to

4 Responses

  1. jakob356

    It would almost be a shame to turn in those classic 1988 “NM” license plates. But with no buyers in DK for a long time, export is probably the way?

    “GLS” seems to indicate that it is a 1500 engine.

    “GLH” on the overseas Dodge version stood for “Goes Like Hell”, so what does “GLS” stand for? ?

  2. Anders Bilidt

    @jakob356, indeed the Shelby-breathed-on Omni GLH is pretty damned cool!
    While a whole lot more pedestrian, I still really like this Smarties-Surprise-Horizon though. To be honest, if I hadn’t just purchased my Scimitar, had three projects on the go, and felt that I could justify parking up a classic in Denmark for my visits back home, I would seriously consider buying this funky little Simca. Would be fun to toodle around in during our visits. And we could keep it on the Danish numberplates too… ;-)

  3. YrHmblHst

    We never got this iteration of the basic car over here, but since the American version[s] and especially the ‘Shelby’ was mentioned…
    Yes, the GLH was pretty cool. Certainly not ‘refined’ and quality of materials [and ofttimes assembly] was sometimes suspect, but bang for the buck they were fantastic little pocket rockets. A buddy who had one bitd just recently purchased a 56k mile original GLH-S; neat car. We’re looking for some NOS ‘MoparPerformance’ pieces [ECM and intercooler] for it right now…

    Ya know, the seats in the one pictured remind me a bit of my Fiestas seats, though the stripes in the Ford were less garish and running at 90° from these.

  4. Anders Bilidt

    @yrhmblhst, I kind of figured you would add a bit about the GLH and GLH-S in the comments section… ;-)
    They are indeed cool little things, and clearly in a different league from the low-key family-friendly Horizon we got in Europe. As a side note; when I visited the Shelby Heritage Center last year, I was happy to see that they had given a beautiful example of a GLH-S a spot among all the Cobras, Mustangs and even the odd GT40:

    Oh, and given the choice between a Horizon and an early Fiesta, I would naturally choose the crisp little Ford. But we need to take into account that the Horizon is also a fair bit cheaper! In fact, without having actually checked every previous Prime Find we have featured, I’m pretty sure that this Simca is the cheapest Prime Find we have yet featured! To rephrase our mantra just a little: Any colourful interior is better than no colourful interior


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