1955 Dodge

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1955 Dodge
1956 Dodge Custom Royal Lancer.JPG
1956 Dodge Custom Royal Lancer
Overview
ManufacturerDodge (Chrysler)
Also calledDodge Coronet
Dodge Suburban
Dodge Royal
Dodge Sierra
Dodge Royal Lancer
Dodge Custom Royal
Dodge Custom Royal Lancer
Production1955–1956
AssemblyDodge Main Factory, Hamtramck, MI
Body and chassis
ClassFull-size
Body style2-door coupe
4-door sedan
2-door hardtop coupe
2-door wagon
4-door wagon
2-door convertible
LayoutFR layout
RelatedDeSoto Custom
Plymouth Plaza
Powertrain
Engine230 in³ (3.8 L) Getaway I6
270 in³ (4.4 L) Red Ram V8
325 cu in (5.3 L) V8
350 cu in (5.7 L) V8
361 cu in (5.9 L) V8
Transmission2-speed automatic
3-speed manual
3-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase120 in (3048 mm)
Length212.1 in (5387 mm)
Chronology
Successor1957 Dodge

The 1955 Dodge lineup, consisting of the entry-level Coronet, Royal, and ornate Custom Royal, was a major departure for the company. Driven almost out of business in 1953 and 1954, the Chrysler Corporation was revived with a $250 million loan from Prudential and new models designed by Virgil Exner. The Dodge lineup was positioned as the mainstream line in Chrysler's hierarchy, between DeSoto and Plymouth.

Overview[edit]

The 1955 Dodge was all-new with a 120 in (3048 mm) wheelbase and 212.1 in (5387 mm) overall length, longer than the 1954 cars. They shared their basic mechanicals with the DeSoto Custom, but had distinct styling. These cars lasted through the 1956 model year before being replaced by an all-new 1957.

There were six body styles and four trim levels for 1955:

1955 Dodge body styles and trim levels
Model 2-door sedan 4-door sedan 2-door hardtop coupe 2-door wagon 4-door wagon 2-door convertible
Coronet I6/V8
Coronet
I6/V8
Coronet
V8
Lancer
I6/V8
Suburban
I6/V8
Suburban
Royal V8
Royal
V8
Royal Lancer
V8
Sierra
Custom Royal V8
Custom Royal
V8
Custom Royal Lancer
V8
Custom Royal Lancer

Coronet[edit]

The Coronet (and Suburban station wagon) was the base model. This was the only line to feature the 230 in³ (3.8 L) Getaway I6 as well as the 270 in³ (4.4 L) Red Ram V8. Coronets were available in all body styles except the convertible. Sedans feature "Coronet" badges on the fenders, while the station wagons are called "Suburban". Although the hardtop coupe was officially named "Lancer", it wore only "Coronet" badges. Turn signals were standard on the Royal and Custom Royal models but optional on the base Coronet.

Royal[edit]

The Royal (and Sierra wagon) were the next step up. Featuring only the V8 engine, the Royal also lacked the 2-door sedan and wagon models available in the Coronet line. Early hardtop coupes lack the "Lancer" script, although they were officially Lancers, but later models wore "Royal Lancer" badges.

Custom Royal[edit]

1956 Coronet Royal Lancer with custom chrome flipper hubcaps

The flagship model was the Custom Royal. All hardtop coupe and Custom Royal-only convertible models were called "Custom Royal Lancer". The Custom line featured unique chrome tailfins (although early model year cars went without this trim), special tail light surrounds, and an upscale interior. Backup lights were standard on the Custom line but optional on all others. The Custom Royal also featured the hemi 270 CID Super Red Ram engine.[1]

La Femme[edit]

See also Dodge La Femme

The La Femme was a special package oriented towards women, who made up an increasing share of Dodge buyers. It came in Heather Rose and Sapphire White colors and included a cape, boots, umbrella, and shoulder bag that matched the floral tapestry-like fabrics. Changes to the car include built-in compartments in the seatbacks to hold these accessories.

Technical specifications[edit]

Power came from either a 230 cu in (4 L) flathead straight six or one of two 270 cu in (4 L) V8s. The regular Red Ram V8 was standard on the Royal and optional on the Coronet. A hemi V8 (the Super Red Ram) was standard on the Custom Royal. A rare Power Pack was optional, consisting of a four-barrel Carter carburetor and dual exhausts good for 193 hp (144 kW; 196 PS) with the Hemi engine.

Two transmissions were offered: a three-speed manual with optional overdrive and Chrysler's two-speed PowerFlite automatic. The PowerFlite was controlled by a dash-mounted lever, though this was changed to a push-button setup for 1956.

The cars used a special coil spring/kingpin suspension in front and regular leaf springs and a live axle at the rear. Power steering was optional. A six-volt electrical system was updated to 12 volts in 1956.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Directory Index: Dodge/1955_Dodge/1955_Dodge_Brochure". Oldcarbrochures.com. Retrieved 2011-11-09.