Soon after Globe War II ended and Detroit got back again to creating civilian automobiles in its place of weapons, most new 1946-1948 American cars and trucks had been a little bit restyled versions of prewar models (for the reason that Us citizens required cars right now). 1949 was the major model yr for the American automobiles that really left the war in the rear-see mirror Ford went to impartial front suspension and sleeker strains, GM launched a radical new overhead-valve V8 family and sleeker traces, and Chrysler… nicely, Chrysler stored building stodgy-on the lookout equipment with trusted but outdated-fashioned suspension and powertrain hardware. The new 1949 Dodges bought bodywork that was a little bit smoother-on the lookout than that of the ’48s, but styling moved metal in these days and income weren’t as powerful as Chrysler hoped. This is a person of those people automobiles, a best-of-the-line Coronet in a Northern California self-services knacker’s property.
I stopped by this garden on an electron-fueled push from the San Francisco Bay to the Greatest Little Metropolis in the Globe for the reason that I had observed this auto in Row52’s online stock and I needed to grab some windshield-wiper hardware for my 1941 Plymouth challenge. The wiper elements weren’t correct for my auto, but this Dodge turned out to be rather strong and finish, perfectly well worth documenting for this series.
In the Chrysler Company brand name-prestige hierarchy of 1949, Dodge rated previously mentioned entry-level Plymouth but under DeSoto and Chrysler.
The Coronet name was introduced for 1949, designating the best trim stage for Dodge cars and trucks that 12 months (the very last new Dodge bearing the Coronet title in North The usa was a 1976 product).
The checklist selling price for this auto was $1,927, or about $23,904 in 2022 dollars. The incredibly lowest priced 1949 Dodge 4-doorway sedan was the Meadowbrook, which price $1,848 ($22,924 currently). Significant cheapskates could get a stripped-down ’49 Plymouth De Luxe 4-door for a mere $1,492 ($18,508 now).
What you obtained as standard equipment on affordable cars and trucks in 1949 differs significantly from what you get currently. For case in point, you experienced to pay out excess for a heater in the 1949 Dodge. I most likely need to have bought this “MoPar 70” emblem whilst I was there.
This was what Dodge’s brochure writers explained as “living-space convenience.”
This is what it would have appeared like nearly 3-quarters of a century back.
The serial selection (from which I have removed the closing two digits) displays that this car or truck was designed in California, although not at the Los Angeles plant. It turns out that Chrysler experienced an assembly plant in Northern California, on Davis Avenue in San Leandro, and that is wherever this motor vehicle was born. The first junkyard I at any time patronized, when exploring for elements for my 1969 Toyota Corona sedan in the early 1980s, was on Davis just on the other side of Doolittle Push from the factory’s area. Chrysler shut down its San Leandro plant in 1954, after which it was utilized by Intercontinental Harvester and then Caterpillar. Right now, Drake’s Brewing Organization makes beer on that spot.
The motor is a Chrysler flathead 6-cylinder, which was a workhorse that stayed in production from the 1920s until well into the 1970s (afterwards types were meant for stationary use in turbines and irrigation pumps, as well as to energy some military vans). Chrysler didn’t be part of the overhead-valve straight-6 fad until eventually lengthy just after GM and Ford, with the Slant-6 motor first showing in 1960 models. In circumstance you’re interested, the pretty final mass-creation new vehicle you could acquire with a flathead motor in the United States was the 1964 Checker Marathon.
If this is the motor that was set up in San Leandro when this car was becoming built, it can be a 230-cubic-incher (3.8-liter) rated at 102 horsepower. These engines received swapped early and often more than the a long time, while, so it could be a single of many different versions.
The transmission is 1 of the oddities of its era: a semi-computerized. Identified as the Gyro-Matic in 1949 Dodges (or the Presto-Matic in Chryslers and the Tip-Toe Change in DeSotos), this transmission utilised Chrysler’s Fluid Travel coupling instead of a flywheel, with two ahead gears moreover an electrically-actuated overdrive device that resulted in 4 forward speeds. The foundation transmission in the 1949 Dodge cars and trucks was a a few-on-the-tree column-shift manual with Fluid Drive (which allowed you to depart the automobile in equipment at stops and start out out in any equipment, but continue to demanded the clutch for shifting), but Coronet purchasers could get the Gyro-Matic as an option.
You still experienced a clutch pedal with a Gyro-Matic, but the driver only utilized it when transferring the gearshift among positions (neutral, reverse, very low and large). Another person who knew how to drive an ordinary a few-on-the-tree would be pushed mad by the Gyro-Matic, since it seems exactly like that significantly more mainstream set up. When driving, you pushed down the clutch, picked Lower (where 2nd would be on a a few-pace) or High (exactly where third would be), allow up on the clutch and strike the gas. At that position, it could be pushed like a frequent automatic, until eventually you wished to change between the Lower and Significant ranges.
Here is a demonstration of the Gyro-Matic in action. The final yr for this transmission was 1953, immediately after which normal two-pedal automatics took about in the North American Chrysler lineup.
I liked this clock a lot, but refrained from buying it.
This auto isn’t rusty, but the interior demonstrates that it spent decades sitting outside the house in the components. Restoration of this mess would have price a lot.
Decide-n-Pull typically tries to provide automobiles like this as “builders” prior to placing them in the normal available-for-areas stock, but there ended up no takers at this price tag. I uncover rather a couple of Chrysler products of this era in the huge self-service yards, so it’s very clear that there are a lot more of these vehicles out there than there are people today who are prepared and in a position to fix them up.