That deal was a lulu because it was not done directly with the Iraqi's. Saudi Arabia actually brokered the deal and was supposed to set up and handle the financial end of it including the payment transfers. Up here the urban legend was that the deal collapsed because the bank that the Saudi's wanted to use was one of their own and it had no affiliations or business arrangements in existence over here. Supposedly they had the money on deposit but no way to transfer it to any bank that GM would accept.
Canada would not deal directly with the Iraqi's due a combination of politics and war. The delivery agreement called for the cars to be shipped to the Saudis who would forward them on to the Iraqis. When that little item became public knowledge there was a lot of political and economic pressure put on GM to cancel the deal, which at that point had most of the cars already completed and ready to ship.
Whatever the reasons, what was left was a bunch of cars that had no dealers waiting for them. So GM simply informed the dealer network that everyone was going to get X number of units; no exceptions, no rejections, you're getting them, up to you to selll them and WE do not want any returns.
Here in town over the years I have been able to pick either four or five of them as they came into the yards. Most of them were in fairly good cosmetic condition but the running gear was just flat worn out. Not only that but there was no way to get repair parts out of the dealerships as most of what had been used had also been delisted and scrapped as obsolete. Things are better now for aftermarket parts and kits but wehn I picked those cars it was before the turn of the millenia so not so much back then.
The bellhousing that I used in my Monte came from a Saudi Chevvie and it has two cousins sitting downstairs in the basement shop. One is half way through a deburring and polishing exercise and the other has a saginaw 4 spd from a mid 80's Camarol attached to it. Waste not want not.
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