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Junkyard Gem: 1949 Dodge Coronet 4-Door Sedan

Bynewsmagzines

Feb 15, 2023
Junkyard Gem: 1949 Dodge Coronet 4-Door Sedan


Soon after Planet War II ended and Detroit obtained back to creating civilian cars and trucks in its place of weapons, most new 1946-1948 American cars and trucks have been somewhat restyled versions of prewar designs (for the reason that People in america desired cars proper now). 1949 was the large design calendar year for the American autos that actually remaining the war in the rear-see mirror Ford went to impartial front suspension and sleeker strains, GM introduced a radical new overhead-valve V8 household and sleeker lines, and Chrysler… nicely, Chrysler kept setting up stodgy-hunting machinery with trustworthy but previous-fashioned suspension and powertrain hardware. The new 1949 Dodges acquired bodywork that was a bit smoother-on the lookout than that of the ’48s, but styling moved metallic in all those times and profits were not as strong as Chrysler hoped. Here’s 1 of individuals cars, a prime-of-the-line Coronet in a Northern California self-assistance knacker’s yard.

I stopped by this lawn on an electron-fueled push from the San Francisco Bay to the Largest Tiny City in the Environment because I had found this automobile in Row52’s on the internet stock and I desired to seize some windshield-wiper hardware for my 1941 Plymouth job. The wiper areas weren’t proper for my motor vehicle, but this Dodge turned out to be pretty strong and entire, perfectly well worth documenting for this series.

In the Chrysler Corporation model-status hierarchy of 1949, Dodge ranked over entry-amount Plymouth but under DeSoto and Chrysler.

The Coronet name was launched for 1949, designating the top rated trim level for Dodge automobiles that year (the final new Dodge bearing the Coronet identify in North The usa was a 1976 product). 

The record cost for this car was $1,927, or about $23,904 in 2022 dollars. The really most inexpensive 1949 Dodge 4-doorway sedan was the Meadowbrook, which expense $1,848 ($22,924 these days). Serious cheapskates could get a stripped-down ’49 Plymouth De Luxe 4-door for a mere $1,492 ($18,508 now).

What you acquired as conventional gear on cost-effective cars in 1949 differs tremendously from what you get these days. For instance, you experienced to fork out extra for a heater in the 1949 Dodge. I most likely really should have acquired this “MoPar 70” emblem whilst I was there.

This was what Dodge’s brochure writers explained as “living-space comfort.”

Here is what it would have appeared like just about a few-quarters of a century back again.

The serial quantity (from which I have taken off the ultimate two digits) shows that this vehicle was crafted in California, nevertheless not at the Los Angeles plant. It turns out that Chrysler had an assembly plant in Northern California, on Davis Street in San Leandro, and which is where by this car or truck was born. The initial junkyard I ever patronized, when looking for pieces for my 1969 Toyota Corona sedan in the early 1980s, was on Davis just on the other facet of Doolittle Generate from the factory’s area. Chrysler shut down its San Leandro plant in 1954, soon after which it was utilized by International Harvester and then Caterpillar. These days, Drake’s Brewing Corporation makes beer on that spot.

The motor is a Chrysler flathead six-cylinder, which was a workhorse that stayed in production from the 1920s till properly into the 1970s (later on types were being supposed for stationary use in generators and irrigation pumps, as nicely as to electric power some military services trucks). Chrysler did not be a part of the overhead-valve straight-6 fad till long immediately after GM and Ford, with the Slant-6 motor initially showing up in 1960 products. In situation you happen to be intrigued, the extremely past mass-output new auto you could obtain with a flathead motor in the United States was the 1964 Checker Marathon.

If this is the motor that was installed in San Leandro when this car was being developed, it really is a 230-cubic-incher (3.8-liter) rated at 102 horsepower. These engines bought swapped early and often around the many years, while, so it could be one of several distinctive variations.

The transmission is a person of the oddities of its era: a semi-automated. Recognised as the Gyro-Matic in 1949 Dodges (or the Presto-Matic in Chryslers and the Idea-Toe Change in DeSotos), this transmission utilised Chrysler’s Fluid Drive coupling instead of a flywheel, with two forward gears in addition an electrically-actuated overdrive device that resulted in 4 ahead speeds. The foundation transmission in the 1949 Dodge autos was a three-on-the-tree column-shift handbook with Fluid Travel (which allowed you to depart the car or truck in gear at stops and begin out in any gear, but even now required the clutch for shifting), but Coronet prospective buyers could get the Gyro-Matic as an choice.

You continue to experienced a clutch pedal with a Gyro-Matic, but the driver only utilized it when shifting the gearshift among positions (neutral, reverse, small and substantial). Somebody who knew how to generate an common three-on-the-tree would be driven mad by the Gyro-Matic, simply because it appears to be just like that a lot far more mainstream set up. When driving, you pushed down the clutch, picked Lower (wherever 2nd would be on a 3-speed) or Superior (where third would be), enable up on the clutch and hit the fuel. At that level, it could be pushed like a regular automatic, right up until you desired to alter in between the Very low and High ranges.

Here’s a demonstration of the Gyro-Matic in motion. The last 12 months for this transmission was 1953, immediately after which frequent two-pedal automatics took around in the North American Chrysler lineup.

I favored this clock a lot, but refrained from getting it.

This vehicle isn’t rusty, but the inside demonstrates that it used decades sitting outside the house in the components. Restoration of this mess would have price lots.

Decide on-n-Pull usually tries to sell cars like this as “builders” prior to putting them in the normal out there-for-sections inventory, but there had been no takers at this cost. I obtain fairly a number of Chrysler goods of this era in the massive self-assistance yards, so it is really obvious that there are a lot more of these automobiles out there than there are people today who are prepared and capable to take care of them up.

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