Tag Archives: Chrysler

Plymouth and the History of the Name

Plymouth and the History of the Name

'66 Plymouth FuryIn 1928, Chrysler decided to create a low-price name badge to compete with powerhouses Ford and Chevrolet. The idea was that this line would have features that the other low-priced badges did not. The badge that Chrysler created was Plymouth, which lasted until 2001 when DaimlerChrysler decided to end the brand due to low sales.

Not Named for the Town, but for Farmers’ Twine

Carroll Shelby’s “Other Car” – The Sunbeam Tiger

Some people dream of getting their hands on one of the brilliantly designed cars by Carroll Shelby, but their dreams fall short when they look at the price tag of his famous Cobras or Mustangs.  There is good news for them; Mr. Shelby designed the Rootes Group Sunbeam Tiger, as well! In 1964, the Rootes Group was looking for a way to revamp the Sunbeam Alpine’s image from a “touring” car to a “sports car/roadster”.  They wanted the car to be modeled after the recently successful Shelby Cobra.  After some research and the decision to use the Ford’s 164hp 4.3L Windsor V8 engine, who was better to ask to design their car than the man himself, Carroll Shelby?  Shelby agreed to design the car for $10,000.  His prototype, along with the prototype built by racer and previous employee of Shelby America, Ken Miles, were sent to England for production.

1951 Chrysler Saratoga

1951 Chrysler Saratoga

1951 Chrysler SaratogaFrom 1939 to 1960, with a few interruptions, Chrysler used the Saratoga nameplate as first the most expensive, full-sized eight-cylinder model, then as the least expensive eight-cylinder, and finally somewhere in between. The 1951 Chrysler Saratoga was positioned at the bottom of the company’s eight-cylinder cars, but was also made available with the famous HemiV8 engine.

In 1951, Chrysler introduced the Hemi to replace the basic straight-eight that had been in place as far back as 1930. The Hemi was not meant to be a racing engine, but soon enough its high-performance capabilities were realized and cars like the 1951 Chrysler Saratoga were being used in road races and drag races and eventually on the stock car circuit.

Personal Luxury Cars 101

Personal Luxury Cars 101

'64 Buick RivieraCaught between a luxury car and a sport sedan, the personal luxury car was a favorite in the post-war era. The personal luxury car is typically a two-door sedan loaded with gadgets and goodies. It’s less expensive than the luxury cars typically made by manufacturers like BMW, Mercedes, and Bentley. Most of the personal luxury cars were made by American car manufacturers, although the luxurious Lincolns and Cadillacs were considered luxury cars.

So Long Superbird: No NASCAR for You

So Long Superbird: No NASCAR for You

SuperbirdChrysler decided that 1970 was the year of the NASCAR racers. Plymouth had the Superbird and Dodge had the Daytona. These two cars were designed with the hopes that Chrysler would design a car like the Daytona for Richard Petty, who was driving a Plymouth at the time. Unfortunately, since Chrysler could not meet Petty’s demands, he left to drive for Ford. Chrysler took control of their own NASCAR destiny and then created the Plymouth Superbird.

Production Rules in Place

Street and Racing Technology at MOPAR

Street and Racing Technology at MOPAR

'94 Dodge ViperIn 1989, the Dodge Viper first appeared at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Since that striking debut, the Dodge Viper was able to resuscitate the struggling brand and inspire the Chrysler brands to create what they call “SRT” or Street and Racing Technology. Fortunately for drivers who love extra power under the hood and more style inside and out, Chrysler has already announced that SRT will become its very own brand.

The Most Interesting Plymouths

The Most Interesting Plymouths

'70 Plymouth BarracudaIn 1928, Chrysler created the Plymouth lineup as their own low priced collection. Sadly for fans of the brand, Plymouth ceased producing cars in 2001. Over the years, there were several interesting Plymouth models that have become icons today.

1960 Plymouth Fury Sunstar: This cool convertible was one of the last winged beauties. It was a truly unique looking car with many unexpected features, like the rotating driver’s seat that allowed easy in and out of the car. With the hooded headlights, pointed tail lights, two-toned paint, and excessive chrome, this car defined the idea of “more is more.”

The Forward Look Lineup and the Little Known Designer

The Forward Look Lineup and the Little Known Designer

'54 Plymouth BelvedereIn the race to build the biggest tail fins, Chrysler designers created the lineup of cars they dubbed “The Forward Look.” This style lasted from 1955-1961 and was created by Virgil Exner, who studied car design with the master, Harley Earl. These cars have a signature look that sets them apart from their General Motors competitors and continues to make them popular collectibles today.

Winged Warriors of the NASCAR Circuit

Winged Warriors of the NASCAR Circuit

'70 Plymouth SuperbirdAsk any child between the ages of 12 and 3 who “The King” is and he will immediately direct you to the Disney-Pixar movie “Cars” and a blue 1970 Superbird that is designed to look just like the one driven by Richard Petty. The King is a talking car, voice by Petty himself, and it also wears his racing number, 43. The Cars character was incredibly popular with children who fell in love with the movie and the anthropomorphic cars, and it brought back the love for the Winged Warriors that rocked NASCAR for a few short glory-filled years.

Monte Carlo SS: Ending the Oil Embargo in Style

Monte Carlo SS: Ending the Oil Embargo in Style

1970 Chevrolet Monte CarloWhen the 1980s rolled around and the oil problems and energy crisis began to dissipate, the Big Three automakers, GM, Ford, and Chrysler, began turning away from fuel efficient gas sippers and slowly began to reintroduce cars with a little power under the hood.

1986 Chevrolet Monte CarloCars started to get exciting again, especially as the Big Three released a few cars that paid homage to the muscle cars from the pre-energy crisis years. Automakers started using V6 and V8 engines because fuel was available. As the decade moved on, Detroit car makers even started to add turbo into the mix, too.