Sunday, August 29, 2010

1957 Chrysler Saratoga 4-door Sedan

"Unusual lowness with up-swept lines, sculptured body surfaces and unpretentious ornamentation merge into an over-all effect of grace and poised power in the new Chrysler and Plymouth cars. Clean, functional lines emphasize the sleek, taut look and feeling of motion. A sense of direction and eager action is captured with the up-swept rear fender fins. Magnificient movement is in every line of these cars – in the thin-appearing roof line . . . the swept-back lines of glass area . . . the forward thrust of distinctively styled headlights . . . the sloping hood and rear deck. Chrysler front end styling is especially pleasing. The grille motif is of a refreshing, simple, horizontal design. Massive, but graceful bumper has depressed center section incorporating parking lights. The entire effect emphasizes the width and lowness of these proud, new cars."

So much catalog poetry might sound overstated today, but it certainly was in tune with the impact that the flashy new Chryslers made upon their presentation in late 1956. The new Saratoga series now filled the space between the entry-level Windsor and New Yorker at the upper end of the lineup. Despite riding on the same wheelbase as their predecessors, and being a little shorter overall, the new Chryslers looked longer and lower than ever. Responsible was a new torsion-bar suspension, which not only allowed for a much lower chassis, but also improved the ride significantly. Beside these low-slung new Chryslers, even the most stylish competitors suddenly looked kind of outdated.

In early 1957, Chryslers typically had dual headlights, like our pictured car, but quad light-pods could be ordered as an extra in the states where they were already road-legal. For 1958, all Chryslers should sport these quad headlights.

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