1962 Dodge Dart 440 Hardtop.

December 13, 2014

11 comments

11 comments:

Tony S said...

Thats a great car!

A distinct design similarity to the Valiant from a few days ago. Those awesome oddball headlights make me think of a hammerhead shark.

And the dash -- OMG! Wonderful colours, dials, controls. Body is in great shape.

clifton.ra said...

These did not sell well. The entire Chrysler line sales slumped.

Garry said...

I had one of these back in 79. Bought it from one of my HS teachers, the yeaar after I graduated. Posed with the car in my senior yearbook. One of several Darts I had over the years.

Richard said...

I believe you're correct the 1962-64 Chrysler's didn't sell too well. I don't know why but they are very clean looking, especially the New Yorker four-door hardtop's. I want to add that Chrysler during those years was still making the four-door pillarless hardtop station wagon. I believe 1964 was the last year for they offered it.

Anonymous said...

Very nice suite of photos. Superbly conceived.

Gorgeous car. Wonderful, oddball contemporary design details, which your photos do justice to.

Kudos to the OPC gurus.

great white tiburon said...

I wounder how that push button trans is holding up, neutral's gone. imagine how weird that front end would look if the grille incorporated the entire front end.

RoadmasterMike said...

These were a sales disaster, downsized at a time when bigger truly meant better in most people's minds. There were three of these in the movie "Mad Mad World" including Spencer Tracy's police car...

Justin said...

Shots 1, 3 and 6 are gorgeous.

Eric Wheeler said...

These were the designes that got Virgil Exner fired. He'd lost his touch adn took a gamble that was disastrous. The next gen Chryslers were much cleaner and fantastic looking. That aside I love the oddball nature of these and they make amazing drag strip cars.

Unknown said...

Great Pixs , Just Recentl bought a 1962 Dart 440 two door almost the exact same color the insides are the same color of judging from the dashboard picture I was wondering if you would remember if it's what color of the carpet was because we're restoring mine and the original car that was in it is it dark green or black thank you if your spawn you can email me back at Jason Owens 6855 at icloud.com









Unknown said...

It was a disaster, however, NOT Exners fault at all. L. L. "Tex" Colbert, in good ol boy fashion, promoted his long time friend William Newburg to head up the Chrysler Corp. This story has been widely known by car guys, and even more so shared a kazillion times by MoPar dudes. Mr. Newburg attending a garden party in the upscale part of Detroit where all the auto makers brass partied, overheard a GM design guy, (supposedly Bunkie Knudsen), talking about a mid size car that was going to be introduced for 1962. This idea seems far fetched these days, but, after 1958, 1959, sales for all the car makers, there was much conversation of downsizing entire lines of American cars. Oddly, many people were simply turned off by the accessive amount of chrome, finns, and general size of most American cars. Also because Datsun, Honda, Toyota, were already making a dent in car sales. Then the American Co with a, let's say, a smaller mid sized car, (A.M.C. Rambler anyone), was already pushing for 3rd place in sales in 1960. So, as difficult as it seems, it was very possible what Newburg heard was the possibility of a downsized Chevy Impala. But what the GM executive was referring to was the Chevy II Nova. Newburg went in the very next day, Monday, in 1960, and ordered a crash redesign, drastically downsize the 62' Dodge and Plymouth full size cars. You have to understand Exners designs thru 1963 were already in place, designs were tweaked, approved, etc., because cars were designed two years or three years out, (can't remember which at the moment). One of the main reasons the 1962 Dodge and Plymouths look so odd, is to save $$, Newburg wouldn't approve, or made the design team drop several very innovative design features, (I encourage anyone to look up the images of the full size cars Exner and his team had designed and were approved), features such as curved side glass, one piece door glass with no vent window, more aerodynamic roofline and sunken in rear window, (look at the 66 and the 68 Charger), most of Exners innovation are seen in many Chrysler cars over the 1960's. Anyhoo, Exner knew he would get the blame, even though he protested, argued, and it is widely known he was very vocal calling it a disaster before the cars were delivered. Exner was right, when the 62's were unveiled, hundreds of Dodge dealers quit, Exner was fired, he filed a suit, Chrysler settled out of court, Mr. Newburg was fired, and in usual Chrysler late 50's early 60's fashion, left nobody driving the ship! The 63', which is Exners redesign was a great seller, and has some of the best lines, and proportioned body lay outs of any 1960's Automobile from any maker, this according to Boyd Coddington famous builder of hot rods. I agree. They were great cars, the unibodies made them ride better, and in 63, still a tad smaller than full size GMs, Fords, etc., made them handle and drive very well. As it's been said, Chrysler has either always made to good a car, or to bad of a car. Who'd argue that Chrysler Corp was ahead of the game in engineering, engines, transmissions, differentials, everything from the late 1950's thru around 1972, arguably. I believe its why so many Chevys, Pontiacs, Fords, have really cooled off in the classic car market, (there are exceptions Shelbys, factory race cars), and the MoPars just keep get more popular among classic car hobbiests. I have owned just about everything, and by far, other than my 39 Ford coupe and another period hot Rod, the 63, 64 B body Dodge and Plymouths cause quite the stir at large events.....I read a quote by one of the largest auction company's director, that when all the dust settles, post war hot rods with a pedigree, or built correctly, Corvettes, MoPars, will still be in demand, and probably will not see a price correction or drop in price. But mainly, there will always be the demand for them like no other cars ever.