1947 Chrysler Town & Country
Chassis no. C3937634
Wood-bodied station wagons began as utility vehicles, often cataloged in the manufacturers' commercial lines. During the 1930s, however, the style developed a certain vogue, particularly as prestige manufacturers like Packard and Chrysler began offering them. In 1941, Chrysler created a sensation with the Town & Country, a stylish barrel-backed four-door wood-bodied station wagon. Based on the six-cylinder Windsor line, it came in either six- or eight-passenger form and had swing-open clamshell doors at the rear. About 2,000 were built in 1941 and '42 before automobile production was suspended for World War II.
After the war, Chrysler had designs on a vastly expanded Town & Country line, and made plans for five body styles. The sedan-wagon was eliminated, but a brochure was published for two- and four-door sedans, a three-passenger roadster, and both hardtop and soft-top convertibles. In the end, only the four-door and the soft-top made it to production. Reportedly seven prototype hardtops were built, and a single two-door; the roadsters seen on the auction circuit are latter-day replicas. Production sedans were Windsor sixes, convertibles were in the eight-cylinder New Yorker line. In 1949, only the convertible was offered, with painted panels outlined in wood; the following year brought a final hardtop as the only model. For 1951, the Town & Country name began a long run on Chrysler steel-bodied station wagons.
A California black-plate car, this 1947 Town & Country is finished in black presents itself very nicely. Reported to have had only four owners since new, prior to the vendor's acquisition, the engine had been rebuilt in 1989 and only a few pampered miles driven since. The wood shows very well and the vendor states that the car is mechanically sorted and runs and drives well. The tan canvas top fits nicely. Postwar material shortages delayed the introduction of true whitewalls, so Chrysler resorted to white-painted metal wheel trim on most cars well into 1947. Not until 1948 were genuine whitewalls readily available. The interior is done in attractive red leather, nicely complimenting the wood body and black exterior paint. The car has Chrysler's 323 cubic inch straight eight, as used by the New Yorker and Imperial, driving through the M-5 semi-automatic four-speed transmission with Fluid Drive.
Slightly fewer than 8,400 T&C convertibles were built in the C-39 series from 1946 to 1948, out of more than 330,000 Chryslers built in the period. A prime example of Chrysler's flagship of the postwar period, this Town & Country convertible is a desirable addition to any collection.
- Please note that this vehicle is titled under its engine number C3937634.
Please note that the chassis number for this vehicle is 7404020.