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Discussion Starter #41
80-year-old coin celebrating Chrysler's first decade

80-year-old coin celebrating Chrysler's first decade found in Belle River

Jul 06, 2015




An Essex County man has unearthed an 80-year-old coin celebrating Chrysler's first decade in auto manufacturing.

Robb Meloche, of Belle River, used his Fischer F2 metal detector to unearth the coin that's marked 1924 on one side and 1934 on the other. Each side features a different Chrysler car, including the 1934 Chrysler Airflow.

The coins were given away at the 1934 World's Fair as part of Chrysler's huge exhibit there. Every person who stopped by the exhibit received a coin, Fiat Chrysler Canada spokeswoman Lou Anne Gosselin said in an email.

Meloche and his 10-year-old daughter found the coin in about 15 cm, or six inches, of dirt under a tree in his yard.

Not worth a lot

Meloche said the coin isn't worth a substantial amount of money.

Two of the commemorative coins sold on eBay in May for $2 and $38 US, respectively.

"It was really exciting to find such an old piece of history, especially since we live in an automotive city," Meloche originally said in a Facebook post he shared with CBC Windsor.

In June, Fiat Chrysler celebrated 90 years of Canadian operation.

Chrysler Corporation of Canada Ltd. Incorporated in Windsor, on June 17, 1925 as the successor to Maxwell-Chalmers Motor Company of Canada.

The company had 181 employees in 61,000 square feet of manufacturing floor space and produced 4,500 cars in its first year.

Meloche said his house and another house share a piece of property that used to be a strawberry field. He's not sure anyone who lived in either house ever worked at Chrysler.

"For the coin to be here is really odd," Meloche said. "I wish someone who knows about the history would get in touch with me."

Meloche said he would consider donating the coin to the Canadian Transportation Museum in Kingsville.

"The type of person I am, I'd probably have it lost in a month from now. I'd like to give it to someone who wouldn't lose it," he said. "If it was worth $1 million, I know I wouldn't lose it.
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Discussion Starter #42
Chrysler Turbine Car




Chrysler Turbine Car

Published on Jul 23, 2015

The Chrysler Turbine Car Started Out as a Ford

We’ll probably never again see something like the combination real world test and publicity campaign that put 50 Chrysler Turbine cars in the hands of American families to test drive for a few months in the mid 1960s. That we’re talking about it more than 50 years later shows just how effective the PR for the Turbine was. Consequently, the Chrysler Turbine is undoubtedly one of the best known concept cars ever. Less well known is the fact that the Chrysler Turbine as we know it started out as a Ford.

First off, I’m in no way implying that Ford had a role in developing the turbine engine that was the heart of the Turbine cars. Chrysler’s turbine program was entirely the brainchild of senior Chrysler engineer George Huebner, though Ford Motor Company and General Motors both have had significant turbine research programs. However, when you say “Chrysler Turbine car”, people don’t visualize whirring fan blades and regenerators in their minds’ eyes. If they’ve ever heard a Turbine car run, their ears might think of the whooshing sound they make, often compared to a very powerful vacuum cleaner, but the predominating mental image most folks would have would be the very sleek, copper toned bodies that Ghia built to be powered by the jet engines.

While the Turbine car’s powertrain was the result of years of research at Chrysler, its exterior design began as a concept for the Ford Thunderbird. In 1960, Chrysler chairman....

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Discussion Starter #43
Iconic Plymouth Superbird



Ontario man spending $300,000 on iconic Plymouth Superbird


08/04/2015

Al Boughton paid $135,000 for his 1970 Plymouth Superbird seven years ago and what a kick it was, driving the most high-winged, cone-nosed, eye-popping, breath-stealing muscle car ever fashioned in Detroit, with its 450-horsepower V-8 and beep-beep Road Runner horn. In fact, last September, he realized it was so good, he had to make it perfect, and perfection meant returning it exactly to original form, just as it had left the Lynch Road, Mich., assembly line in 1969.

Boughton estimated work will total $100,000. Mechanical components, perfected earlier, $35,000. Interior, $40,000. “So you’ve got $300,000 in it, but one sold for $575,000 in Florida last year, and this car is better-documented. If it’s not the best in the world, it’s certainly in the top three.”

To think there were no takers at the $4,804 MRSP in 1970. Too fast on the race track, too slow in the showrooms was the sad, short story of the Superbird and its Dodge Charger Daytona twin, banned by NASCAR after it dominated the 1970 stock car championship and axed by Chrysler for lack of customers.
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Discussion Starter #44
The Top 10 Most Interesting Vehicles

The Top 10 Most Interesting Vehicles at the Walter P. Chrysler Museum

August 28, 2015




On December 31, 2012, the Walter P. Chrysler Museum closed its doors to the general public, citing the low attendance numbers that didn't justify keeping the museum open to the public year-round. Still, Chrysler has preserved the museum and occasionally opens the doors for special events. Luckily, we got behind the usually closed doors earlier this year at the 2015 Chrysler Employee Motorsport Association (CEMA) charity car show. Here are the top ten most interesting and important vehicles on display.

Read more: The Top 10 Most Interesting Vehicles at the Walter P. Chrysler Museum
Follow us: @AutomobileMag on Twitter | AutomobileMag on Facebook

 

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Discussion Starter #45
The Chrysler Conquest TSi

The Chrysler Conquest TSi is a Forgotten 1980s Gem

08/29/2015





Automotive history is a bit like a glossy coffee table art book. The greats are given full-page spreads and dazzling historical accounts, while everything else gets a footnote mention, or perhaps none at all. And frankly that’s too bad.

This is a Chrysler Conquest TSi. It earns substantially fewer full-page spreads in metaphorical coffee table books next to its contemporaries—the Toyota Supra, Nissan 300ZX, Mazda RX-7, Porsche 944—but that doesn’t mean it’s any less special. This 1989 Conquest TSi recently graced the pages of eBay, and it’s a welcome reminder of Mitsubishi’s performance car talent. Yes, Mitsubishi.

While it’s certainly no mystery, the Conquest draws its shape and mechanicals from the Mitsubishi Starion coupe, which entered the Japanese market in 1982. The original “narrow body” models produced only 145 horsepower and 185 lb-ft of torque, and were imported to the U.S. as Dodge and Plymouth brand vehicles. You could say they looked fairly modest in styling, however that would change for 1986.

The Starion (now badged as a Chrysler Conquest) received a substantial upgrade in ESI-R/TSi trim, now brandishing rowdy box flares atop its wheel arches, sleek 16-inch alloy wheels, and over two inches of added wheel track. Under the hood, the Conquest TSi and Starion ESI-R now punched out 176 horsepower and 223 lb-ft of torque from the 2.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder, thanks to engine tweaking and the addition of an intercooler.

Sure, the Starion and Conquest twins may be omissions from the history books, but contemporary road tests prove their ability to turn smiles. A 1986 MotorWeek test between a Starion ESI-R and its aforementioned rivals (300ZX, RX-7, and 944 Turbo) found that the Mitsubishi ranked just behind the RX-7 in second place for slalom speed, and tied the 944 Turbo in skid pad top speed. Not bad for the cheapest car of the bunch.

Inside, driver and passenger were treated to seats with absolutely enormous side bolsters, a performance-minded center boost gauge, automatic climate control, motorized seat belts, and a cassette stereo system with graphic equalizer. Apart from the rampant ‘80s-ness inside, the overall Conquest and Starion designs still present very well today.

Further, this ‘89 Chrysler Conquest TSi looks remarkably good for its age, and as a post-’88 car, it sports an even taller 188 horsepower and 234 lb-ft of torque. Also, who doesn’t love a good box flare? According to the seller, the coupe shows only 58,576 miles on its odometer, though it does pack the four-speed automatic rather than the sought-after five-speed manual.

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Discussion Starter #46
1969 Dodge A100 Sportsman Van



09/08/2015


As an A100 owner, I'm always on the lookout for treasures like this one

We haven't had a van Junkyard Treasure since this prehistoric non-minivan Plymouth Voyager last spring, and as a Dodge A100 owner I know how hard examples of Chrysler's forward-control van of the 1960s are to find in junkyards nowadays. These vans tended to get used up, finally getting scrapped only when the last possible mile got squeezed out, and that means they're exceedingly rare. Here's one that I found in the San Francisco Bay Area a few months back.
Read more: Junkyard Treasure: 1969 Dodge A100 Sportsman Van | Autoweek


1966 Dodge Trucks & Vans TV Commercial

Published on Feb 27, 2015

1966 Dodge Trucks & Vans "Tough Trucks" TV Commercial


1967 Dodge Pick-Up Truck & A-108 Van TV Commercial

Published on Feb 20, 2015

1967 Dodge Pick-Up Truck & A-108 Van TV Commercial
 

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Discussion Starter #47
Chrysler Imperial (A Mighty Pleasant Sound)

Chrysler Imperial (A Mighty Pleasant Sound)

Published on Sep 8, 2015

A 1989 Murilee Arraiac song based on a tape of the exhaust falling off a 1965 Chrysler Imperial on its way to San Francisco.
 

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Chrysler Brand Celebrates 90 Years

Chrysler Brand Celebrates 90 Years of Style, Engineering Innovation and Groundbreaking Products

September 22, 2015 , Auburn Hills, Mich. -

Chrysler Six, Airflow, Imperial, New Yorker, 300 and Town & Country are just some of the nameplates that mark the rich history of the Chrysler brand.

2015 marks the 90th anniversary of Chrysler, which was founded on June 6, 1925, by Walter P. Chrysler. Chrysler represents more than a brand – it symbolizes the people behind the products, and the influence of its founder can still be felt today.


Walter P. Chrysler built a company and a brand that wasn’t afraid to push the limits and think outside of the box. In 1925, when he realized his dream of creating his own company, he dedicated the company’s efforts to excellence in engineering, while building affordable, luxurious cars at a price consumers could afford. That tradition continues today.

Through the last 90 years, Chrysler vehicles were known for innovative engineering, groundbreaking style and “looking more expensive than they were,” the forerunner to affordable luxury.

1920s – The first Chrysler branded vehicle was born as part of Maxwell Motors: the Chrysler Six. Walter P. Chrysler was Chairman of Maxwell Motors prior to establishing Chrysler Corporation in June 1925. Priced at $1,565, the light, powerful vehicle had a groundbreaking L-head six-cylinder engine and four-wheel hydraulic brakes, an uncommon feature in the 1920s. Additional Chrysler Six features included tubular front axles, full pressure lubrication, aluminum pistons, replaceable oil and air filters, shock absorbers and indirect interior lighting.

1925-1930 – Early Chrysler vehicles provided style and power, but were also affordable, which contributed to the brand’s rapid success. Early models were named after their top speed: the Chrysler 58 had a top speed of 58 miles per hour (mph); a Chrysler 72 could go a max 72 mph and so on. In 1926, Chrysler introduced a more powerful and costly Imperial model, giving Chrysler a response to Cadillac, Packard and Peerless. The Imperials offered prestige as a top-of-the-line Chrysler. Chrysler production in the late 1920s focused on both four- and six-cylinder powered vehicles.

1930s – The 1930s brought the Great Depression in the United States and technology took hold in the automotive industry. Chrysler survived the Great Depression with stylish, economically priced cars and its reputation for practical, advanced engineering. Beginning in 1931, Chrysler introduced a number of engineering feats. Chrysler took “Floating Power,” a two-point mounting system strategically placed so the engine’s natural rocking axis would intersect with its center of gravity, keeping the engine’s natural vibration from reaching the frame and body, and improved it with rubber engine mounts, which further reduced engine vibration in the body. By the 1932 model year, all Chrysler models featured Floating Power. Industry firsts also featured on Chrysler products in the 1930s included a downdraft carburetor, automatic spark control and rustproofed, welded steel bodies.

The most groundbreaking vehicle from the 1930s was the Chrysler Airflow. Carl Breer was inspired by a squadron of Army Air Corps planes flying overhead in the late ‘20s. Pushing the boundaries of design, aircraft design principles were used for the development of the vehicle, along with inspiration from pilot Orville Wright, with whom Breer consulted. Chrysler constructed a wind tunnel at their Highland Park, Michigan, headquarters during the development of the Airflow. As the design team developed early prototypes, they learned about aerodynamics as they worked. They built at least 10 full-size semi-streamliners during development. Wind tunnel testing inspired the modified teardrop shape. The body sported a short, curved nose with faired-in headlamps, and the engine sat 20 inches farther back than was normal for the time.

Chrysler shocked the industry with a vehicle that represented future design and engineering advances when it introduced the Chrysler Airflow in 1934. The Airflow was an “engineer’s” car with impressive innovations at the time. A beam-and-truss body gave great strength but weighed less than expected, through a tighter interlocking method of blending body and chassis. Body panels extended below the frame and all passengers sat within the wheelbase. The engine reached past the front axle, enabling a smooth ride to rear-seat passengers. Automatic overdrive was introduced with both the Chrysler and DeSoto Airflows. For maximum passenger comfort, the Airflow seats were stretched to 50 inches, the widest in the industry.

The 1934 Imperial Airflow set 72 national speed records and recorded 95.7 mph in the flying mile at Bonneville.

While the Airflow was an engineering success, it was a car too far ahead of its time and was a retail failure. Yet, just a few years later, many of the cars being produced looked similar to the Airflow. While people flocked to see the vehicle when it was introduced because it was new and distinct, it didn’t translate to sales at the time. Today, the Airflow is considered one of the most significant industrial designs ever. It launched streamlined, modern shaping into the automotive world, as well as signaled an end to what was the traditional body construction and engine placement.

In the late 1930s, Chrysler made significant steps in transmissions with the introduction of “Fluid Drive.” The new gearbox design eliminated a lot of shifting required in transmission designs of the era and was a precursor to the modern automatic transmission. A fluid coupling was mounted in tandem with the conventional clutch, allowing slippage between the engine and transmission when the latter was in gear, allowing the driver to start in high gear if he chose, or the driver could shift gears the traditional way.

Chrysler developed the “Superfinish” method of mirror-finishing engine and chassis components, which set a new benchmark for bearing smoothness and helped minimize friction.

Notable vehicles that debuted in this period were the New Yorker and the Town & Country.

1940s – The Chrysler Thunderbolt was introduced in 1940.

Walter P. Chrysler, founder of the company and the brand, died in August 1940.

The early 1940s saw the development of the “Vacamatic,” a four-speed gearbox with two ranges. The driver used the clutch in the normal way by selecting either a Low (1-2) or High (3-4) range. Most driving could be done in high. While not a true automatic, it satisfied many buyers in the ‘40s and ‘50s.

The shapely, wood-bodied Chrysler Town & Country sedans and wagons were part of the smoother look for Chrysler products, with signature grille bars that wrapped around the front fenders.

Chrysler, like many automakers, geared up for war production after the start of the 1942 model year and halted civilian production of automobiles in February 1942. Among the better known of Chrysler’s World War II products were the M-4 Sherman tank, “Sea Mule” marine tugs, Harbor Utility Tugs (HUTs) and Chrysler-Bell air raid sirens.

The government authorized civilian auto production to begin in July 1945 and gas rationing ended in August 1945. Chrysler resumed production of civilian vehicles in December 1945.

The late 1940s saw the wood-bodied Town & Country sedans and the graceful and beautiful Town & Country convertibles draw the interest of celebrities, which began to spark interest in the full line of Chrysler vehicles.

1950s – 1951 was the birth of what would be one of the most recognized, powerful engines in the automotive industry, the hemispheric-head V-8 engine, otherwise known as the HEMI®. Initially installed in the Chrysler Saratoga, New Yorker and Imperial, the HEMI operated with exceptional volumetric efficiency and delivered truly thrilling performance for its day. The engine’s lower compression ratio also let the HEMI run on lower octane fuel than most V-8s at the time.

In 1955, the first muscle car, the Chrysler 300, was introduced. The hardtop contained a 300-horsepower HEMI V-8 with solid valve lifters and dual four-barrel carburetors, the most powerful full-size car in the world. A tight, competition suspension made the big Chrysler handle as well as it accelerated. The new Chrysler 300 would dominate NASCAR racing with the Kiekhaefer Mercury Outboard Racing team and driver Tim Flock. The Kiekhaefer team would win 20 of its 40 NASCAR races.

Highway Hi-Fi from CBS debuted in 1956 and featured a compact phonograph mounted under the dash with sound that came from regular speakers.

Virgil Exner took over Chrysler design in the early 1950s, with his “Forward Look” styling debuting in 1955. Exner’s new styling language featured a flat hood, light, airy roof and soaring tailfins.

In 1957, Chrysler Corporation’s entire line of cars was awarded Motor Trend’s “Car of the Year” award, and Exner and his team received the Gold Medal from the Industrial Design Institute.

1957 saw the introduction of torsion-bar front suspension, which delivered superior handling and allowed for much lower bodies. Chrysler also introduced the first rear-window defogger and child-guard rear door locks on its vehicles. In addition, the push-button TorqueFlite transmission with three speeds was offered. The three speeds allowed for better fuel economy and the TorqueFlite quickly earned a reputation as the industry’s best automatic transmission. In 1957, Chrysler Corporation products took first place in every class of the Mobil Economy Run.

In 1958, a Chrysler 300-D set a land speed record at Bonneville at 156.387 mph.

1960s – The brand continued to produce “style and speed” with the 300 J, as well as “affordable luxury” with the Newport line and the New Yorker.

The 1960s brought the move of all of Chrysler’s cars to unibody construction, rather than body-on-frame construction. Unibody construction is lighter, which helps to improve performance and fuel economy, and it is also designed to dissipate energy in a crash by enabling the frame to crumple and bend in specific ways, which allows the kinetic energy to travel through the car’s body, around the passenger compartment.

Chrysler began testing its gas turbine cars, producing 50 fourth-generation turbine-powered cars to be tested by consumer representatives all over the U.S. beginning in 1962. 1962 also marked the end of the Windsor nameplate, which was replaced with a non-letter 300. In the letter series, the Chrysler 300-H debuted in 1962.

In 1963, Chrysler shook up the automotive industry by offering a five-year, 100,000-mile powertrain warranty – the first of its kind in the industry.

The late '60s birthed the muscle car era, as well as a redesign of the big cars. Elwood Engel, the head of Chrysler design, went to a squarish but smooth exterior look highlighted by his trademark bright metal fender edging. Cleanly swept fenders ran in an unbroken front-to-rear line and a conventional column-mounted shifter replaced the push button controls inside for the TorqueFlite automatic transmission. Full-size cars could get the biggest V-8 to date, a 440-cubic-inch engine, and Chrysler issued the last of its 300 letter series cars, the 300-L in 1965, but production of the non-letter series 300s continued.

1968 brought the availability of rear washer/wiper for Chrysler wagons.

1969 debuted the new “fuselage styled” Chryslers, which were larger than the models they replaced.

1970s – The muscle car era came to an end as a result of stricter emissions and safety rules, rising insurance rates and a trend toward less expensive vehicles.
Electronic ignition is standard on all Chrysler vehicles in 1973, 5 mph front crash bumpers and 2½ mph rear crash bumpers are mandated and anti-theft devices operate the horn and lights.

With the 1973 oil embargo and fuel shortages, Chrysler had to shift its focus to production of mid-size and small vehicles.

1975 was the debut of the new Chrysler Cordoba, and Hollywood actor Ricardo Montalban took TV by storm as the pitchman for the vehicle. The Cordoba was billed as the new small Chrysler and a personal luxury coupe. It was the smallest post-World War II Chrysler built to date.

A new “fuel pacer” option debuted on 1975 models to warn drivers when they hit the gas pedal too hard.

In 1977, Chrysler and Calspan jointly develop a Research Safety vehicle that featured a reinforced body structure, soft elements, run-flat tires and a driver‘s side airbag. 1977 also marked the last of Chrysler’s turbine concept cars, the LeBaron Turbine Special, which featured knife-edge-shaped front fenders and headlamps hidden behind huge doors.

November 1978, Lee Iacocca is named President of Chrysler Corporation.

1980s – A financial crisis forced the brand to return to the basics.

In 1981, the Chrysler Imperial received a makeover to be one of the most distinctive cars of the year with hidden headlamps, knife-edge fenders and a unique “bustleback" rear end. Each car got a 5.5-mile road test at the assembly plant before it was delivered to the dealer.

The K-car platform was introduced by the company in 1981.

1982 brought the debut of the Chrysler brand K-car, the all-new front-wheel-drive Chrysler LeBaron. 1982 also saw the debut of the LeBaron Town & Country “woody” wagon, as well as a LeBaron convertible, the first convertible from Chrysler in a decade.

Chrysler Corporation introduced an entirely new vehicle segment in 1984 that revolutionized the automotive industry, the minivan, a front-wheel-drive compact van that was garagable, and provided easy entry and exit for drivers and passengers.

Chrysler acquired Lamborghini and debuted the Chrysler Portofino concept vehicle at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 1987.

1990s – All Chrysler products are now front-wheel drive, and all Chrysler 1990 models offer a driver’s side airbag as standard equipment, leading the industry with this emerging safety technology.

The 1990 model year brought the introduction of the world’s first luxury minivan, the Chrysler Town & Country. It sported imitation wood paneling and luxury accommodations and other features typically not found on a minivan at the time.

With more than 75 minivan and industry innovations and more than 275 awards worldwide, the Chrysler minivan forever changed the automotive world. Even today, nothing moves people and things better than a minivan for the price of the vehicle: seating for seven, flat cargo load floor that can hold an 8-foot sheet of plywood with the Stow ‘n Go seats stored in the floor, excellent fuel economy and a variety of price points make the minivan the best people mover in the marketplace. Integrated child safety seats were available in the Town & Country minivan in 1992, an industry first.

In 1993, the front-wheel-drive LH-body Concorde sedan debuted. The Concorde was larger than a mid-size sedan, but smaller than a full-size sedan. The Concorde featured the new “cab forward” design where the windshield was pushed forward and the wheels were located much closer to the corners of the car than was normal at the time, creating more interior cabin space for passengers.

The Chrysler Cirrus mid-size sedan debuted the cab forward design when it entered the market in 1995. The Cirrus also debuted simple but significant details like an easy-to-remove battery and, for the first time, ashtrays were not standard equipment, they were an option.

1996 ushered in the debut of the third-generation minivan. The big news was the availability of a second sliding door for the passenger side and Easy-Out roller seats, both industry firsts.

The 300 nameplate returned to the Chrysler lineup in 1999 with the introduction of the 300M. Based on a 10-inch shortened version of the Concorde and LHS, it was designed for European export in mind. The Chrysler 300M was the first in the series to be powered by a front-wheel drive six-cylinder engine. Meant to be a modern interpretation of the 300 series, the 3.5-liter, 253-horsepower 300M offered a balance of performance, handling and fuel efficiency. The 300M sedan would be named Motor Trend’s “Car of the Year” in 1999.

2000s – With the merger of the Daimler and Chrysler companies, Chrysler continued to develop cars that people wanted, as well as taking a page from the minivan playbook by inventing vehicles that created new segments in the marketplace.

In 2001, the Chrysler Town & Country debuted the fourth generation of the minivan with an industry-first power liftgate. The Town & Country also featured power sliding doors with industry-first opening direction obstacle detection and in-door motors.

The PT Cruiser sedan also joined the Chrysler family in 2001, and was named Motor Trend’s “Car of the Year.” The too-cool-to-categorize PT Cruiser added a soft-top option in 2005 with the Chrysler PT Cruiser Convertible, the latest in a long line of factory-backed customizations for the vehicle.

The Chrysler Pacifica debuted in 2004 as a “Sports Tourer,” the forerunner to the now popular crossover segment. The Pacifica was a segment buster with the flexibility and safety of a minivan, the capability of an SUV, but the style and refinement of a luxury sedan. With three-row “2+2+2” seating and front- or all-wheel-drive capability, the Pacifica was a stylish alternative for drivers who wanted flexibility and capability with luxury amenities.

The introduction of the 2005 Chrysler 300 series marked a return to rear-wheel drive and included the 5.7-liter HEMI-powered 300C model with 345 horsepower. The new 300 was named “Car of the Year” by Motor Trend. Adding even more performance to the lineup, the 425-horsepower Chrysler 300C SRT8 featured a 6.1-liter HEMI engine, four-piston Brembo brakes, performance styling, suspension and exhaust, and was capable of 0-60 mph times in the low 5-second range. Additional models within the 2005 to 2010 model year span included all-wheel-drive versions, the “blacked out” 300S, the 300C and 300C SRT8 Touring models (outside of North America) and the 300 “DUB” edition with standard 20-inch wheels.

2005 also saw the debut of a new Chrysler Town & Country minivan, which offered a revolutionary new feature, the Stow ‘n Go seating and storage system. The system featured industry-first, fold-in-the-floor, second- and third-row seats for a completely flat load floor that could still accommodate an 8-foot sheet of plywood, still an exclusive in the industry.

The fifth-generation Chrysler Town & Country minivan made its debut in the 2008 model year with 35 new or improved features for the “family room on wheels,” including the Swivel ‘n Go seating system. Swivel ‘n Go featured second-row seats that swiveled 180 degrees to face the third row and included a removable table that installed between the second and third row, along with covered storage bins in the second row. The 2008 Chrysler Town & Country also offered an integrated child booster seat in the second-row quad captain’s chairs, which was an industry first, and a minivan exclusive one-touch power-folding, third-row, 60/40 bench seat.

2010s – The Chrysler brand, after emerging from bankruptcy and now a part of Fiat Chrysler, continues to engineer excellence with an entirely all-new lineup of vehicles in the pipeline.

In May 2014, as part of the FCA US LLC five-year plan, Chrysler brand refocused it efforts and returned to the founding principles of Walter P. Chrysler: a mass-market brand that delivers innovative engineering, groundbreaking style and most important, all of this at a very attainable price. Chrysler products today are a value proposition that Walter P. would be proud of.

With these principles in mind, Chrysler debuted the all-new-from-the-ground-up Chrysler 200 mid-size sedan in 2014 as a 2015 model-year vehicle. The first mid-size sedan to offer a nine-speed automatic transmission as standard equipment, the 200 brought a number of features into the mid-size segment that were previously only seen on luxury cars. Advanced safety and security features, including Forward Collision Warning-Plus with crash mitigation, Lane Departure Warning with Lane Keep Assist, Parallel and Perpendicular Park Assist and available luxury amenities, including heated steering wheel, heated and ventilated seats, premium leather interiors with real wood trim, handsfree phone and navigation, state-of-the-art all-wheel-drive system with a segment-first disconnecting rear axle for improved fuel economy and much more.

With roots that include the breakthrough 1955 and 2005 models, Chrysler debuted the new Chrysler 300 in 2015. It takes the nameplate’s bold style and sophistication to new levels and highlights six decades of ambitious American ingenuity through iconic design proportions and inspired materials, world-class quality and craftsmanship, best-in-class 31 mpg highway fuel economy, plus class-exclusive innovations, including a state-of-the-art TorqueFlite eight-speed transmission now standard on every model, the segment’s most advanced all-wheel-drive system, award-winning Uconnect Access services, all-new and segment-exclusive 7-inch full color driver information display and the newest generation Uconnect systems.

The Chrysler story continues in the second half of the decade with the introduction of an all-new Chrysler Town & Country minivan. The highly anticipated next generation of the minivan will make its debut in the first quarter of 2016.

About Chrysler Brand
The Chrysler brand has delighted customers with distinctive designs, craftsmanship, intuitive innovation and technology all at an extraordinary value since the company was founded in 1926.

Whether it is the groundbreaking, bold design of the Chrysler 300, the simple elegance and extraordinary driving experience of the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 or the family-room-on-wheels functionality of the Chrysler Town & Country, Chrysler brand vehicles reward the passion, creativity and sense of accomplishment of its owners. Beyond just exceptionally designed vehicles, the Chrysler brand has incorporated thoughtful features into all of its products, such as the innovative center console with pass through storage and sliding cup holders in the 2015 Chrysler 200, the industry-exclusive Stow 'n Go® seating and storage system on the Chrysler Town & Country and the fuel-saving Fuel Saver Technology in the Chrysler 300.

The Chrysler brand's succession of innovative product introductions continues to solidify the brand's standing as the leader in design, engineering and value. The premium for the Chrysler brand is in the product, not the price.
 

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Discussion Starter #49
Chrysler Sunbeam

22 September 2015



July 1977 saw the launch of Chrysler’s all-important small car, the Sunbeam. And to promote it the company employed the services of Petula Clark, the ’60s star who now found herself wearing a tight perm and singing about a hatchback.

The song was a version of Petula’s ‘Put a Little Sunshine in Your Life’, adapted to ‘Put a Chrysler Sunbeam in Your Life’ by those crafty creatives at Chrysler, with the second line promising ‘It’ll put a smile on your face’. A Sunbeam was shown tackling a variety of rural roads, while a voiceover boasted about the car’s annual service intervals and 50mpg fuel economy.

The Chrysler Sunbeam lasted just four years, selling around 200,000 units during that time. Happily, however, Petula Clark is still with us.


1977 Chrysler Sunbeam featuring Petula Clark

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Discussion Starter #50
Historic Dodge Trucks



Historic Dodge Trucks

Published on Oct 22, 2015

Running footage of Historic Dodge Trucks.
 

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Discussion Starter #52
1965 Dodge Trucks



1965 Dodge Trucks vs Chevrolet & Ford Comparison Dealer Promo Film

Published on Oct 31, 2015

1965 Dodge Trucks vs Chevrolet & Ford Comparison Dealer Promo Film

Mopar is a registered trademark of Chrysler Group LLC. Master Tech series training materials are the property of Chrysler Group LLC and are used with permission.
 

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Discussion Starter #53
Plymouth Prowler

The Plymouth Prowler Was Secretly Chrysler's Most Important Engineering Experiment

The man who designed the Prowler told us a story you've never heard about the cutting-edge engineering behind the retro-inspired hot rod.



12/17/2015

The Plymouth Prowler doesn't have a sterling reputation in the automotive press. At the time of its 1997 debut, it was criticized for packing a 3.5-liter V6 in a body that screamed for a V8; today, its Syd Mead retrofuture styling has gone out of vogue. By the time it was discontinued in 2002, wearing a Chrysler badge after Plymouth's demise, fewer than 12,000 Prowlers had been sold.

It may seem like the Prowler was a fluke, a strange side project that somehow made it past the accountants to share a showroom floor with Town & Country minivans and Ram pickups. But when the Prowler came up in conversation at the R&T office this week, it made me wonder: What made Chrysler pull the trigger on this particular project?


To find out, I spoke with Tom Gale, the former head of design at Chrysler who shepherded the Prowler into production. As it turns out, the car was far more than a 1990s spin on a 1933 Ford—it was Chrysler's largest-ever experiment in building aluminum cars, coming nearly 20 years ahead of the aluminum car revolution we're seeing today.

"The whole thing really was an exercise in research for how to use aluminum materials," Gale says of the Prowler. "At the time, Chrysler really didn't have a lot of applied research. So in my view, this was a great way to kind of force us to take a look at aluminum stamping, aluminum forming, extrusions, welding, and combining that with composite materials.
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1942 Dodge Power Wagon



1942 Dodge Power Wagon Restomod - Jay Leno's Garage

Published on Dec 20, 2015

This WC63 will amaze you! Legacy Classic Trucks' Winslow Bent takes Jay through the derelict troop transport he modded into a true, 8,000-pound 6x6 which will go and go and go forever.
 

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1970 Dodge Challenger R/T



This Dodge Hemi Challenger R/T Is One Family’s Surviving Muscle Car

Published on Dec 29, 2015

“In the summer of 1969, we found ourselves in Detroit. It was an exciting time for my father, of course, but for the whole family,” says Juan Escalante. “A visit to the Detroit Auto Show and seeing the Challenger…he just fell in love.”

You’re looking at a 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T 426 Hemi 4-speed, one of only 137 equipped with the largest engine and a manual transmission. Chrysler made around 77,000 Challengers, making this easily one of the most rare variants.
 

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Dodge Charger: Icon Of All Muscle Cars

Dodge Charger: Icon Of All Muscle Cars

December 27, 2015

In the 1960s, one futuristic car embodied the essence of cool, and what it means to be an American.



When you think about muscle cars, the Dodge Charger is at or near the top of the list of the most iconic cars ever built. Even when looking at a body of work that spans the entire history of the automobile, the Charger is there standing proud. When it debuted in late 1965 as a 1966 model, its fastback roof, convex grille, hideaway headlights, and bumblebee body lines made it immediately stand out. It looked—and acted—like a full-sized sports car, with engines available all the way up to the then-new 426ci street Hemi.

In the early ’60s, Dodge was viewed as a stodgy car company design-wise, this in spite of having an outstanding reputation for chassis and powertrain engineering. Dodge was looking to break out into the youth market and win over new buyers with an exciting design. Its B-Body platform, which was shared with Plymouth, underpinned the Coronet line-up—that car just not being hip enough for many younger buyers. Even with great performance in the form of big-block power plants—including the 426 Max Wedge—the 1965 Coronet just didn’t have enough sex appeal.

The 1966-67 Charger was Dodge’s answer. Although it was every bit a Coronet under the skin (a good thing considering the Coronet’s engineering), you’d never know it. The new body was both beautiful and extremely effective in racing, particularly in the stock car racing world where it won 18 times in the 1966 NASCAR season, culminating in a manufacturer’s title that year.




But sales were not as good as Dodge had hoped. Rather than give up on Charger, the design team kept at it. One young 26-year-old designer named Richard Sias began work on a successor—unofficially—in 1966, building a 1/10th scale clay model of a car that incorporated the now-famous pinched Coke-bottle shape that defines the ’68 model. As word of Sias’ exciting new design made the rounds, management took notice, and in an unprecedented move, the idea was given the green light without going through the long, traditional vetting process. It was that good. (As a side note, it is Dodge Studio Executive Designer Bill Brownlie who is most often and incorrectly credited with the ’68 Charger’s design, not Sias. For his part, Sias was largely ignored both internally at Dodge and to this day by automotive history buffs.)



When the 1968 model hit showrooms, it was a runaway success. Sales topped 96,000 units for 1968, cementing the Charger’s position in history. The design was so successful that Dodge was loathe to change it for the ’69 and ’70 model years; a center divider was placed in the grille and quad round taillights were dropped in favor of a long, flattering taillight assembly for 1969. In 1970, Charger went back to the flat-faced grille and added a chrome surround.

The iconic character of the ’68-70 Charger—and arguably the earlier ’66-67 model as well—comes from its aircraft-like design. The Cold War and the Space Race put aircraft and aerospace design well into the public eye, and those pleasing shapes were emulated everywhere, from architecture and furniture, to electronics and automobiles. What we now refer to as muscle cars was a direct product of that design philosophy, and while all other domestic manufacturers fed off of this aesthetic, it was Dodge that achieved the pinnacle of that design ethos in the form of the Charger. This was a shape that captured all at once every young American’s hope for the future, and passion for performance.

The third generation of Charger debuted in 1971, and although not nearly as iconic as the ’68-70 model, made further use of aircraft fuselage design elements. Major changes made the body longer and sleeker looking; a shortening of the wheelbase by two inches on top of a nose that was yet even longer made the front overhang border on cartoonish, but aerodynamic improvements to the rear backlight (now flush with the c-pillar) dramatically improved its performance on super speedways. (The change to the tunnel-back window in 1968 had severely hampered the car’s aero, a matter addressed with a bandage approach in the 1969 Charger 500 and Daytona. With the 1971 design, however, all was good again.)





Sales for 1971 were great (topping 82,000 units), partly a result of Dodge discontinuing two-door hardtop and post variants of the Coronet. (If you wanted a two-door Dodge intermediate, it was by default a Charger, starting in 1971. To that end six variants of the Charger were offered in order to please as many people as possible.) As history unfolded, however, it became clear that the days of the areo-styled muscle car were numbered. Spurred by a poor economy, OPEC, Federal emission and safety standards, insurance premiums, and a change in public tastes, the Charger’s days were all but over. And though a new Charger would be introduced for 1975, nobody was fooled. A poorly disguised version of the Chrysler Cordoba, The 1975 Charger—though quite nice in other ways—was a decidedly softer personal luxury coupe, not a muscle machine.

The Dodge Charger—in particular the 1968-’70 variant—will go down as the most recognized muscle car in history. Seizing upon its free-spirited shape, the film and television industry practically adopted the ’68-70 Charger as its own, co-opting the shape to underscore a range of iconoclastic characters. (Dukes Of Hazzard; Bullitt; Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry; and the Fast & Furious franchise, to name a few.) There is arguably not a person on the planet who doesn’t immediately associate the Charger’s shape with 1960s America. Charger embodies not just muscle car culture, but an era of technical superiority, freedom on the open road, unbridled hope for the future, and the can-do, fun-loving spirit of America.
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Digestible Collectible: 2001 Chrysler Prowler
By Chris Tonn on January 13, 2016




I’ve a little confession to make: I’m not really a big fan of hot rods. Some of that may be my age, as I grew up in the ’80s and ’90s, when imported sports cars were generally a preferred means of automotive expression.

Alternatively, the overall “People of Walmart” vibe I get when attending any sort of hot rod event has, by juxtaposition, possibly soured the entire genre for me.


So, count me among those who didn’t drool over the Prowler when it was released in 1997. An overstyled modern interpretation of a ’32 Ford roadster, powered by a Chrysler V-6? In the immortal words of Lisa Simpson, meh.

The years may have changed me a bit, though, as well as an appreciation of the high-tech aluminum chassis that was years ahead of its time. This 2001 Chrysler Prowler doesn’t look too bad to my eyes.

The deep blue paint makes the car as subtle as any Prowler can ever be, though I kinda dig the purple that was all over the first run of cars. These ’99 and newer cars had the benefit of a more powerful V6, with 253 horsepower rather than 214, and thus were significantly quicker.

The interior is, frankly, sad. It’s at once familiar to anyone who has driven a ’90s-era Mopar, and to anyone who has skimmed an aftermarket performance parts catalog. Take a look at that tiny Autometer tachometer haphazardly placed atop the steering column. That’s a factory piece, not added on. The five gauge cluster centered on the dash is equally cheesy looking. I understand that parts-bin engineering is required for low-volume cars, but this is sad.

It’s not like I could ever use a Prowler daily driver as the transaxle is located in its rear making luggage space minimal at best. Have any other OEMs ever offered matching trailers to expand the trunk?

As much as I want to hate the dated styling, indifferent interior, and poor usability, I can’t truly hate the Prowler. It seems to be holding value, as this one for $21,000 seems to be near the bottom of the market. Good ones trade for over $30,000.

Incidentally, the always-reliable Wikipedia page for the Prowler mentions that the bonded-aluminum body was produced in Shadyside, Ohio, then shipped to Conner Avenue in Detroit for final assembly. Several other sites around the web have blindly repeated the Wiki. Allpar, a great reference otherwise for Mopar history, mentions nothing of Shadyside, a small town along the Ohio River not far from my wife’s hometown.
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Hemi-Powered 1968 Darts and Barracudas

Chrysler’s Limited, Lightweight, Hemi-Powered 1968 Darts and Barracudas

January 12, 2016



In 1967 the Chrysler Corporation was bound and determined to use its 426ci Hemi engine to dominate as many classes of racing as it could find to cram its “elephant motor” into.

While the 426 Hemi had been available as a production option since 1965, Chrysler wanted to develop a factory-built, lightweight car to enhance winning in Super Stock drag racing.

The 1968 production order codes L023 for Dodge Darts and B029 for Plymouth Barracudas were for special-order cars with Hemi engines and a whole lot less. The cars’ seam sealer and insulation were removed, as were heaters and radios. Lightweight front bucket seats replaced standard front seats, while the rear seats were eliminated completely. Thinner side glass was installed in the acid-dipped steel doors, and batteries were relocated to the trunk for better traction. Stiffer rear springs and heavy-duty shocks replaced the production street versions, and special disc brakes were used up front.


Fiberglass front fenders and hoods replaced their heavier steel versions, with the only other body mods being rear-wheel cutouts for Darts and crudely modified right-front shock towers on both Darts and Barracudas to make room for the wide Hemis. Those Race Hemis were fitted with either aluminum or magnesium dual four-barrel cross-ram intake manifolds, headers, and 12:1 pistons. They were conservatively rated at 425 hp.

Both Torqueflite automatics and New Process A-833 four-speeds were available. All cars were fit with 4.88:1 rearends, but the automatic cars got 8¾ Chrysler axles and the four-speed cars used Dana 60s.

This shot is the Sox & Martin 1968 lightweight Barracuda driven by Ronnie Sox launching at the 1968 NHRA Nationals at Indianapolis. The Sox & Martin team would go on to win 6 of the 11 major NHRA events that year, and went undefeated in 30 match races. They won Super Stock titles at both NHRA and AHRA Springnationals, the AHRA Summernationals, the All-American Championship, Stock Car Nationals, and Cars Magazine awards. Ronnie Sox was also chosen as AHRA Driver of the year.

Chrysler ultimately built 80 of the Darts and 70 Barracudas, making these some of the rarest and most potent Chrysler products ever. To avoid any confusion about what these cars were intended for, Chrysler mounted this terse statement on the dashes of the limited-edition Hemi cars stating, “This vehicle was not manufactured for use on Public Streets, Roads or Highways, and does not conform to Motor Vehicle Safety Standards.
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Dodge Little Red Wagon Commercial


Published on Jan 31, 2016

Bill Maverick Golden's Dodge Little Red Wagon Commercial
 
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