In the three years (1946-48) after World War II, Plymouth was the third-most popular nameplate behind Chevrolet and Ford, selling just over 1 million cars.
The Chrysler bodies were not necessarily beautiful, but they were solidly constructed and outlasted their competitors’ models in on-the-road reliability. The cars were never luxurious, but Plymouth continued its well-earned reputation as an affordable family car. A customer could get behind the wheel of a 1947 model for between $1,150 and $1,626. The Plymouth would remain virtually unchanged from its 1942 styling until 1949.
The immediate postwar cars are often overlooked in favor of the later designs from the ’50s and ’60s by car enthusiasts, yet they still stand out at any car show or cruise-in and demand your attention.
Bill Sears discovered his project car in 2010 in a pole barn here in Marion County. He spent two years restoring it as a road-worthy and beautiful tribute to the postbellum era. The frame was in such poor condition that it was replaced with a Chevy S-10 pickup unit. All new fender panels had to be fabricated from new sheet metal and welded together. Power seats from a 2001 Dodge Dakota, new gauges, door panels, a headliner and a low-car shifter were added to finish the interior.
For power, a General Motors 350-cubic-inch crate engine with an Edelbrock carburetor creating 290 horsepower was added. Sears finished off the restoration with a unique color – the 2010 Viper Anaconda Green, which changes colors in the sun as you walk around the car. His car has won several trophies for its paint job.
Modern suspension, brakes and Riddler chrome wheels complete the package.
Bill and his wife, Chris, can be found cruising to The Suds, The Southsider Voice’s cruise-in and local car shows.
Until next time, happy cruisin’!