Tuesday, September 1, 2009

1958 Chrysler Saratoga 4-door Sedan

"Fresh from the most successful year in Chrysler history come the magnificient, mighty 1958 Chryslers with styling and engineering innovations to further widen Chrysler's lead over all other cars in its field."

Although trying hard, this Chrysler certainly isn't a police car. While the side trim is missing, the paintjob indicates that it is an Saratoga, Chrysler's midline offer for 1958.

Introduced in 1957, the styling of Chrysler's new lineup was spectacular, and topped even the acclaimed generation of 1955 - 1956. A new "Torson Aire" front suspension allowed the Chryslers to have a very low silhouette. In a time when "longer and lower" meant progress, this was a serious advantage over the offers from Buick, Chevrolet, Ford or Oldsmobile. With this generation of cars, Chrysler finally snatched the lead in car styling from GM.

Under the hood, thrifty "Hemi" V8-engines, the excellent "TorqueFlite" automatic transmission, and the "Torson Aire" torsion-bar suspension backed up the masterpieces of Virgil Exner's styling department. Chrysler indeed was moving on fast. The downside of these rapid changes were quality issues, with body corrosion as a major problem. Consequently, Chryslers from the end-50s are quite hard to find in Cuba, too.

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