The Dodge Custom 880

The Dodge Custom 880

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Photo Courtesy of Free Library of Philadelphia

In the automotive industry of the 1960s in America there was constant competition among the Detroit “Big Three” and it is interesting to watch the way that each of these companies responded to the actions of one another.

There was no shame in being a “copycat” as it were. If one of the three came out with a design that struck a chord with the public you can be sure that the other two would have their own versions before you could blink an eye.

With the above in mind Dodge came out with the Custom 880 in fall of 1961 for the 1962 model year. Chrysler wanted its Dodge division to have a full-size offering to fill a void, and they caught wind of a rumor that General Motors was going to reduce the size of Chevrolet full-size models. In response, they hoped to beat Chevy to the punch with the smaller Custom 880 (its length was 213.5 inches) but in fact the rumor turned out to be false and Chevy actually made their full-size 1962 models a bit bigger than the 1961 line.

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Photo Courtesy of How Stuff Works

The engine that was standard in the Dodge Custom 880 was a 361 cubic inch overhead valve V-8 that was rated at 265 hp. The car was available with a three speed manual or a three speed automatic and it was offered in a number of different body styles. You could purchase a hardtop with either two or four doors, a four-door sedan, a convertible coupe or a station wagon. In all, 17,500 examples of the 1962 Dodge Custom 880 were sold and this was considered to be a success by the company.

The 880 remained in production through the 1965 model year when 23,700 of them were produced. In all, there were a total of 101,200 Dodge Custom 880s built so if you find one today you have located a relatively rare classic Dodge.

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