1946 - 1949 Chrysler Town & Country Convertible
Although the Chrysler Town & Country is mostly known as the minivan that the company launched in 1989 as a more luxurious alternative to the popular Dodge Caravan, the nameplate was originally used on a station wagon. First introduced in 1940 as a four-door, eight-passenger hauler, it was maintained in production for no fewer than eight generations, until 1988. However, while all generations of the Town & Country were station wagons of various sizes, the first-generation model also had sedan and convertible models. The drop-top was offered for the 1946 to 1949 model years.
The first-gen was launched in 1940, but production was discontinued after the 1942 model year due to the U.S. entering World War II. The marque was revived in 1945, but the station wagon was dropped, being replaced by two cars – a four-door sedan and a two-door convertible. The sedan was discontinued in 1948 and the convertible ceased to exist in 1949. For 1950, the final model year of the Town & Country, Chrysler sold the nameplate as a two-door coupe only. Beginning with the 1951 model year, all Town & Country vehicles were station wagons until 1988, when Chrysler decided to use the name for the minivan we all know today.
The Town & Country Convertible was one of the most luxurious vehicles when it was introduced in 1945. Priced from $2,743 in its first year, almost as much as a Cadillac, with only the Crown Imperial being costlier, the drop-top had a beautifully appointed interior and one of the best looking wood body panels. It also featured Chrysler’s most potent engine at the time. Only some 8,700 examples were built, making it one of the rarest and most sought-after American classics.
Continue reading to learn more about the Chrysler Town & Country.
Some of the cars Jay Leno has on his web show are pretty rare. But a custom Chrysler Imperial parade car made for the President of the United States (although never actually used by any president) is one that is going to rate especially high on the rarity scale. Making the car even more rare is the fact that, although it left the factory in 1952, it was updated with 1956 parts a few years later, and all of the modifications to the car, including the updates, were done by the factory.
The car is brought into the garage by its two caretakers, who are dispatchers for the city of Los Angeles and who give us a bit of history on the car. It was bought by the federal government so that the president would have a parade car to use while in Los Angeles, although the closest it ever came to being used for this was when Nixon (then Vice President) used it. The city of Los Angeles owns it now, but it hasn’t been retired as a museum piece, it is still used for parades and has been reupholstered and given a more modern PA system.
Continue reading for the full story.
***We will start this party at approximately 0945 US EASTERN TIME***
Ladies and Gentleman, you are invited to join us for a special early-week TopSpeed Podcast. The best part? It is totally live. Feel free to click the play button on the YouTube video to hang out with us; you can even chat and comment live to give us feedback and ask us questions.
I know the show is a few days early, but I have a special announcement to make. I don’t want to spoil anything, but it involves lots of horsepower and an epic road trip. You have to watch to see what the announcement is.
Beyond the special announcement, we are going to talk about Justin’s drive of the new 4-Series, the new McLaren P13 GT and the future of solar powered roads.
Mark is also going to regale us with tales of his time with the Chrysler Town & Country, and then we plan on discussing the changed coming to the 2015 Nissan Frontier and then we plan on covering the crazy Hyundai Veloster Midship Concept.
We may have another piece of news or two, and of course we will have viewer questions, and a round of Own, Drive, Burn.
Click that play button and hang out!
Times have changed in America, that much we can tell you.
Remember the day when mid-sized convertibles were as trendy as the mullet hairstyle? Those days are long gone, which is why it’s a little surprising that automakers are still producing these vehicles.
Consumers still love convertibles, but these days, it has to be of the sporty variety. The 2013 Chrysler 200 Convertible is not a sports car, but it does come with the capability of being a convertible. So you can say that the vehicle offers the best of both worlds, right? The sporty performance of a coupe and the open-air freedom of a convertible all wrapped in a midsized vehicle’s body.
To be fair, there are a number of positive attributes with the 200 Convertible. It’s been completely refreshed to make Chrysler forget about the forsaken Sebring. It also has an impressive powertrain configuration that does justice to its looks.
So there’s still hope for the 200 Convertible. But hope is fleeting, especially in the auto industry and ultimately, the midsized convertible is a dying breed.
Chrysler may have something with the 200 Convertible but for the most part, it’s going to take a lot of convincing to get people interested in this kind of car these days.
Click past the jump to read about the 2013 Chrysler 200 Convertible
Several years ago, rumors were circulating that Chrysler was considering building a super-high-output supercharged V-8 engine to help the company hang with the likes of the 2013 Camaro ZL1 and 2013 Shelby Mustang GT500. With these two models pumping out 580 horsepower and 662 horsepower, respectively, the 470-horsepower 2013 Challenger SRT8 just doesn’t cut it.
Well, now this rumor is reportedly confirmed, per Automotive News, by an unnamed source within Chrysler. The report claims that this 6.2-liter supercharged engine is set to produce up to 640 horsepower, which will put is about on par with the SRT Viper’s 8.4-liter.
Supposedly, this engine will find its way into the next-generation Challenger, which is slated to arrive in the 2015 model year. So, why is Chrysler just now working on this engine? Well, the report claims that the unnamed leaker said this is Chrysler’s “last hurrah” in the muscle car realm before the stricter CAFÉ standards take hold.
Stay tuned for more updates on the “Hellcat” 6.2-liter engine. We certainly can’t wait to see Chrysler finally compete with the top-performing muscle cars on the market again.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2013 Dodge Challenger SRT8
The 1967 model year was the debut year for the Plymouth Belvedere GTX, which most enthusiasts simply know as the Plymouth GTX. The GTX was always one of the top performers in the 1960s, but was also a refined muscle car, receiving the nickname “The Gentleman’s Muscle Car” in its early years. Unfortunately, the GTX was a late arrival to the muscle car area and only lasted five model years.
In its debut year, there were 12,115 models built, which makes it a rather rare car in itself. Options were not scarce for the 1967 GTX, as it had two engines available, a 425-horsepower, 426 cubic-inch V-8 Hemi or a 375-horsepower, 440 cubic-inch V-8. It also had two transmission options, a three-speed automatic and a four-speed manual.
In addition to the engine and transmission options, there was also coupe or convertible options available. One would assume that the convertible four-speed manual option with a Hemi would be a popular option combination, due to its raw power and ability to shift with the wind in you hair, but that’s not the case. Only seven of these convertible models with four-speeds and a Hemi engine rolled off of the assembly line in the 1967 model year.
That makes this one of the rarest vehicles on the planet, let alone one of the rarest muscle cars ever built. To boot, it is a natural rarity, as opposed to a planned one, like a special edition. It just so happened that dealers ordered so few of this option combination that the factory only produced a few.
If you want to own one of the most rare mass produced automobiles on the planet, now is your chance, as RK Motors Charlotte has just placed a convertible 1967 GTX with a Hemi and a four-speed up for auction on Ebay.
Now we know that it’s rare, but how has this vehicle held up over the course of the past 45 years?
Click past the jump to read our full review on this rare vehicle.
After focusing on the 300 in a series of variants, Chrysler has moved on to the 200 Convertible with the unveiling of the S version at the 2011 New York Auto Show. The 200 S Convertible features more luxury and sporty characteristics than the standard version with an improved exterior and interior look. It also gets a more powerful engine in the V6 variety to bump up the power from the standard model by 110 HP. The new 200 S Convertible will go on sale later this spring with prices starting from $32,490.
"The New York International Auto Show is the perfect place to debut the new 2011 Chrysler 200 S sedan and Chrysler 200 S convertible models," said Olivier Francois, President and CEO, Chrysler Brand – Chrysler Group LLC. "These vehicles are built with an unmistakable attitude and a signature style; and you could say the same of New York itself. The attitude may be ‘Imported from Detroit,’ but it’s definitely at home on Park Avenue."
Hit the jump to read more about the Chrysler 200 S Convertible.
After the sedan version was unveiled back in September, Chrysler has now decided to reveal the first official images of the future Chrysler 200 Convertible. According to the official statements made at the Detroit Auto Show, the new Chrysler 200 will be sold on the European market as the Lancia Flavia, both sedan and convertible and will make its debut at the Geneva Motor Show this upcoming March.
The 200 Convertible’s design has been slightly modified in order to accommodate the roof folding mechanism. The engine line-up will also remain unchanged: a 2.4-liter I-4 World Gas Engine mated to either a four- or six-speed automatic transaxle, or the new 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine mated to a six-speed automatic transaxle. Most likely the European customers will also enjoy some diesel engines in their future Lancia Flavia, but none for the American market.
Hit the jump to read more about the 2012 Chrysler 200 Convertible.
Much to our surprise here at TopSpeed, Fiat has decided to keep the Sebring convertible alive. They are even giving it a major refresh early next year and boy, does it need it. The Sebring and the Dodge Avenger sedans are due for some updates before the end of the year and the Sebring could be getting a new name. There have also been reports that the new Sebring will be built in Italy.
Most of the changes that will take place on the two cars will include a reworked suspension and improved interiors. Chrysler’s new Pentastar V6 will be in the convertible next year.
Take a step back to the 1990’s and you will find Sebrings everywhere, as it was the best selling convertible in America. This was down to its low price and decent styling. The current model took all of that and threw it away. It combines the negative areas of the sedan, and there are many to choose from, plus poor styling.
So, why would any car company want to keep this convertible alive? Well, according to AllPar, it’s because they are a rental fleet favorite in warm weather climates. So, Chrysler can thank vacationers for driving the Sebring convertible because, chances are, nobody else will.
Back in 1985, Chrysler CEO Lee Iacocca asked his engineers to build him a convertible out of a K-Car. Production convertibles in the early 80s had been absent from the North American market due to safety concerns, and Iacocca wanted a car he could enjoy for the summertime. Iacocca claims that wherever he went people were interested in the car. This left enough of an impression on him that the next year the Le Barron convertible was born, and ended a nearly fourteen-year drought of convertibles for Chrysler.
Our Chrysler Sebring Limited is a descendent of that original rebirth of the American convertible, and this car shows it. Just like how American cars are best known, the Sebring is big and roomy convertible with a plush ride.
Chrysler has announced today that the production of the all new 2008 Chrysler Sebring Convertible started at Heights (Mich.) Assembly Plant (SHAP) alongside the Chrysler Sebring Sedan and the 2008 Dodge Avenger.
The Assembly Plant featurs a new technology, called Flexible Manufacturing Strategy (FMS) that allows the company to bring its new vehicles to market more quickly and to manufacture multiple products on one assembly line.
"We are seeing a great deal of success at the (...)
For the second year in a row the winner of the Ginn Open will drive away in America’s favorite convertible, courtesy of Chrysler. In addition, attendees of the LPGA event can raise money for the Red Cross and the Florida Children’s Hospital each time they test drive a Chrysler vehicle during the tournament, being held at the Ginn Reunion Resort, in Reunion, Fla., April 9-15.
Chrysler, which is one of the founding sponsors of the Ginn Open and is its official automotive sponsor, is giving an (...)
Chrysler is raising the roof on the convertible segment, introducing the all-new 2008 Chrysler Sebring Convertible. With a starting U.S. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price of $26,145 (including $675 destination), the Chrysler Sebring Convertible is priced $645 below the comparable outgoing model with $2,965 more content, including standard side seat-mounted air bags for head and thorax protection, four-wheel disc anti-lock brakes, tire-pressure monitoring system, automatic latching (...)
Chrysler has announced today pricing for the Sebring Convertible. The base Sebring with a vinyl convertible top, four-cylinder engine, ABS and tire pressure monitoring system will start at $25,470.
The Sebring Touring, also with a standard vinyl top, adds a standard V-6 engine and 17-inch wheels and starts at $28,070. The Sebring Limited with a standard cloth top, 18-inch wheels, premium sound system and various dress-up features starts at $31,670. Prices don’t include a $675 destination (...)
0Chrysler Brand Announces the "Sebring Hats Off to the Derby" National Design Competition.Chance to Win an all-new 2008 Chrysler Sebring Convertible and weekend trip including tickets to the 133rd Kentucky Derby0
Hats to be inspired by the elegant design and exhilarating performance of the all-new Chrysler Sebring Convertible Enter contest at http://www.chryslersebringhatsofftothederby.com by March 5 Public helps decide favorite designs
In honor of (...)
Chrysler is raising the roof on the convertible segment, introducing the all-new 2008 Chrysler Sebring Convertible. This completely redesigned Sebring Convertible is built on the company’s new D-segment platform and offers what no other convertible on the road can offer: Chrysler’s sleek and elegant design, exhilarating performance with excellent fuel efficiency, a spacious interior that comfortably sits four adults and enough room in the trunk to hold two golf bags, even when the top is dropped.
According to Automotive News, at Los Angeles Auto Show Chrysler might unveil the convertible version for the Sebring sedan.
The new convertible will include a traditional soft top or a trendy folding hardtop, a first for the segment. The hard top system and the cloth top alternative are developed together with Karmann GmbH.
Having been produced for years, the Sebring should serve well, as any production issues should have been worked by now. Nevertheless, resale value has taken a hit due to the domestic automakers offering incentives over the past three years. The standard warranty is hardly class leading, at three years/36,000 miles, but similar to most of Chrysler’s rivals. Check the IntelliChoice Five-Year Cost of Ownership closely, as many Sebring models and trim levels fall in the “Worse than Average” or “Poor” ratings range.
Sebring is a decent, midsize car line that has held on for years without a significant redesign, amid newer, exceptional competitors. The new TSi is notable for bringing sport to the range, but the standout is the four-place convertible. This drop-top has been a leading seller, with precious few true competitors.
The 2006 Chrysler PT Cruiser Convertible comes with a light face-lift to consolidate its position in the heart of the convertible segment. With a less conventional body and unprecedented room and comfort for this class, the PT can appeal to those who may not have been interested in a convertible before.
The redesigned Chrysler Sebring convertible will be available in two versions: soft top and hard top (like the CC Peugeots or SLK.) Both tops will be supplied by german manufacutrer Karmann GMbH
The Sebring convertible, which arrives in 2007 as a 2008 model, is an important vehicle for Chrysler.
For several years, the Sebring has run neck and neck with the Ford Mustang in the U.S. convertible market. Ford Motor Co. offers the Mustang convertible only with a soft top. So the Sebring will (...)