<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602

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Lot 254¤
Sold to benefit multiple charitable organizations, single family ownership from new
1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible
Chassis no. 50383118
Engine no. S2420602

Sold for US$ 56,100 inc. premium
Sold to benefit multiple charitable organizations,
1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible
Chassis no. 50383118
Engine no. S2420602
330ci OHV Hemi V8 Engine
Single Carter Four-Barrel Carburetor
255bhp at 4,400rpm
3-Speed Powerflite Pushbutton Automatic Transmission
Independent Coil Spring Front and Semi-Elliptic Leaf Spring Rear Suspension
4-Wheel Hydraulic Drum Brakes

*Single family ownership from new
*60,626 miles from new
*Beautifully preserved
*One of only 400 Indianapolis Pacesetters produced and around 30 surviving


THE DESOTO FIREFLITE

Introduced in 1955, the Fireflite was the top of the range model for Chrysler Corporation's DeSoto brand. A stellar example of Virgil Exner's forward look design, two tone paint with chrome accented trim, elegant fins topping fang-shaped panels, and a long, low look made the car a favorite with consumers. Inside, the aeronautic inspired cockpit featured a gull theme creating a driver and passenger dashboard that was beautiful in its simplicity, leather seating, and plenty of power features controlled by chromed switchgear. A pushbutton Powerflite transmission, optional in '55 and standard in '56, controlled the Hemi V8 under the hood. Debuting with 200bhp, another 55 ponies were summoned in 1956—enough to propel the Fireflite from zero to 60mph in just eleven seconds.

The radical shape would eat away at Chevrolet and Ford market share and propel the DeSoto brand to the number 11 spot among car makers in the US.

With its fins growing with its power, the 1956 Fireflite was the perfect car to set the pace of the era, and that it did in the 1956 Indianapolis 500 as the official pacecar. To mark the occasion, 400 examples of the fully loaded, top-of-the-line Fireflites were branded 'Indianapolis Pacesetters' and each one was finished in the two-tone white and gold color scheme of the car that paced the race.

THE MOTORCAR OFFERED

This Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible was ordered new by Gus De Gazio's brother Patrick and first registered on January 24, 1957 in New Rochelle, New York. Sadly, Patrick would only be able to enjoy the car briefly before he passed away suddenly in October of '57. Gus kept the car in the family though, driving it sparingly in the summer months only. With his Cadillac, he would hunt for parts for the DeSoto, carefully maintaining it in beautiful, original condition.

Today, the DeSoto is surely one of the most original and well preserved examples of the rare Indianapolis Pacesetter. Showing only 60,626 miles from new, its gold leather interior with brown tweed inserts is nicely finished and minimally worn. The paint is nicely preserved as well while the chrome and gold accents show well. Recent service work has been done to ensure proper running order after the car sat follow Gus's passing.

Complete with a copy of its original New York vehicle registration, this single family owner from new DeSoto is ready to go a new owner for the first time since 1957. Among the most sought after models to come from DeSoto—a marque that would cease production a mere four years after this car rolled off the line, only about 30 Indianapolis Pacesetters are believed to survive and this is doubtlessly the most honest and original among them.

Footnotes

  • Please note that this lot is titled under its engine number. Also, a special thanks to Passport Transport and the Collector's Car Garage for the shipping and storage of this and the previous lot.
Contacts
<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602
<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602
<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602
<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602
<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602
<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602
<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602
<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602
<b>1956 DeSoto Fireflite Indianapolis Pacesetter Convertible  </b><br />Chassis no. 50383118 <br />Engine no. S2420602
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