Left-hand drive 1948 Plymouth Special Deluxe Coupe Chassis no. 20286225 Engine no. P15944757
The introduction of a lower-price line - Plymouth - to compete head-on with Ford and Chevrolet, helped Chrysler Corporation weather the Depression years. Launched in 1928, the four-cylinder Plymouth, although not a revolutionary design, nevertheless incorporated hydraulic braking, full-pressure lubrication and aluminium pistons, a specification its rivals would not match for a decade. The car was an instant success and by 1933 Plymouth was the US auto industry's third biggest seller, just behind Ford. Together with DeSoto, another Chrysler Corporation marque, Plymouths were assembled in Mortlake Road, Kew from 1932 to 1939 and badged as Chryslers, being given the names of London suburbs such as Croydon, Richmond, Kew and Wimbledon. Confusing matters still further, Chrysler added a Plymouth to the range for 1938!
Like the majority of United States motor manufacturers, Plymouth recommenced civilian production at the War's end with mildly revised versions of its 1942 line-up, which would remain little changed for the next few years. Designated 'P15', these first post-war Plymouths were made in two series - Deluxe and Special Deluxe - both of which were built on a 117" wheelbase chassis and powered by a 217.8ci (3,570cc) sidevalve six. Plymouth was gearing itself up for the introduction of its entirely new 1949 range so there was little in the way of development, the only change of significance for 1948 being a reduction in wheel diameter from 16 to 15 inches.
The car offered here is an example of the three-seater Coupe, which was one of two coupes in the six-model '48 Special Deluxe range, the other being the six-seater Club Coupe. Of the two, the three-seater is the rarer, with only 31,399 sold that year compared with more than 156,000 of the six-seater version. Un-restored and unregistered, the car is presented in generally good original condition, starting regularly on inspection and displaying good oil pressure during the test drive on private land. Since importation from the USA six months ago the Plymouth has been in storage and will require light re-commissioning prior to further use. There are no documents with this Lot. Import duties have been paid.