In June the Gemini received a new slant nose with rectangular headlights and a redesigned rear end. The changes are actually more comprehensive than that, also including a redesigned (longer) engine bay and a wider radiator opening for two new engines added in November (the twin cam G180W and the new 4FB1 diesel) which both require wider radiators for more air for cooling. In Japan, sports models are available with the "ZZ" name.
Built by Isuzu, sold as Opel by Buick in the USA.
In May 1979 the gasoline engine was updated with the new I·CAS emissions system (a two-way catalytic converter) and exhaust recirculation valve. The modified engine, which meets the 1978 emissions standards for gasoline passenger vehicles, also has five extra horsepower for a total of 110 PS (81 kW). One month later the diesel's Bosch "A" injection system was updated to the newer "VE" system, in order to meet the stricter 1979 emissions standards.
In 1979 the XD diesel-powered version was added.
Starting in 1979, a special version called the Giugiaro Edition was available.