The 1964 Polara was a member of the second generation of Dodge’s high-end, full-sized car. After the 1962 model year, the Dodge Custom 880 became the brand’s most expensive big car and the Polara was downgraded to second best. The Polara name was replaced by the Monaco in 1973. Chrysler intended the name to garner excitement based on the space race going on at the time. Originally, the Polara was built on 122-inch wheel base and came in two- and four-door models including a coupe, a sedan, a convertible, and a station wagon.
For the second generation 1964 Polara, a four-door hardtop was added and the wheelbase was significantly reduced to 116 inches. All of the new Dodges around this time were made on smaller frames compared to the previous years. The 1964 Polara was smaller, lighter, and had a more sculpted appearance than its predecessors. The downsizing of the full-sized Dodge cars actually turned out to be a mistake. They were intended to compete with new, smaller Chevrolets, which were never made. Chevy continued to manufacture truly big cars, and the Polara was considerably smaller. This led to the hasty introduction of the Custom 880, replacing the 1964 Polara as Dodge’s priciest car. Regardless of the confusion and the changes made at the last minute, the 1964 Polara was a popular model with car buyers. This included the sport option, the 1964 Polara 500. The extras on this package were largely cosmetic. It came with a 318-cubic inch V8 engine, which was nothing special. In order to get the bigger 383-cubic inch engine, purchasers needed to fork over even more money. Even without the performance aspects included in the price for the Polara 500, the sport option proved to be popular. It outsold the 1963 version by double the number.
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