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1937 DeSoto 4DR $2500 F/B IA


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17 hours ago, B Jake Moran said:

Hudsy are you saying the headlamps are not original?  
 

This is a decent $700 project car. 

No, there original. I'm just finding fault with the designers. I suppose "fat fenders" deserve "fat headlights". I guess that I've always thought that they detract from the pretty grille. First snow overnight in MPLS, any down there?

Edited by Hudsy Wudsy (see edit history)
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I sent her an offer of $400.  It will be turned down.  We all know to restore this would cost $70,000, way, way more than it will ever be worth.   I also advised her to "give" it to Doug's 4 Wheelers between Pella and Oskaloosa, Iowa. Doug's is not just a 4 wheeler place, they have become the depository of these kinds of cars for the last 15-20 years.  One of the last great old car/truck businesses-salvage yards-project car yards in the midwest.  They so far do not crush.  They allow anyone asking to walk the acres of old vehicles, no pressure.  

 

They have maybe 250 or more "old" junk cars that can be restored on their premises.  

 

Look, this lady and all of the other delusional sellers on Facebook marketplace are not going to accept my offers.  Are they serious?  $2500 for what 10 years ago was a $500 project car, that I am sure the seller just pulled out of the back 40?  

 

This DeSoto is a curious creature.   To me the back 40% looks truncated, shortened.  Did they have 2 series of DeSoto's in 1937?  

 

Wasn't it - Imperial -Chrysler -DeSoto - Dodge and then Plymouth?   Meaning I figured this car would look a bit longer in the back. Or did it simply share a body with Dodge? 

 

What was the engine size?  Didn't Mopar up the displacement slightly for each upward trajectory of line?  Obviously I am no 1930's Mopar expert but anecdotally I thought DeSoto was #2 behind Chryslers.   

 

At the end of the day, whether you are restoring a 1937 Chevy-Ford-Mopar - you will end up with a car similarly styled, similarly performing, so what difference does it make between them?   This DeSoto restored would or should provide the same old car hobby experience as most any other non CCCA Full Classic car from 1937.    It deserves to be restored, but in today's hyper expensive restoration costs.    A sad sentiment....

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You're not wrong. Clever management of models allowed Chrysler to use the same body for all four brands. The major difference in the brands was wheelbase and front sheet metal. The wheelbase difference was all ahead of the firewall. Of course, amenities and appointments got better as you traveled up the model lineup. I was admiring the styling of what's left of the upholstery. It's a tattered ruin now, but you can see that it was nicely detailed when new. Not that a Dodge or a Plymouth was awful, just nowhere as classy. I wouldn't be one to entertain thoughts of restoring it -- no way. But if there was someone out there that had a bad grille, maybe this would be a wise buy (at a lower price). A person could always sell off what is left of it and live with a small loss. Yes, the line up was Plymouth, Dodge, DeSoto and, at the top, Chrysler and Imperial. Plymouth and Dodge shared the same 23" long block, while DeSoto and Chrysler shared a slightly longer 25" long block. Off course Chrysler had an eight cylinder engine as well. There were earlier times when both DeSoto and Dodge had eights briefly. Others know much more about those vintages than I do.

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17 hours ago, B Jake Moran said:

This DeSoto is a curious creature.   To me the back 40% looks truncated, shortened.  Did they have 2 series of DeSoto's in 1937?  

 

Wasn't it - Imperial -Chrysler -DeSoto - Dodge and then Plymouth?   Meaning I figured this car would look a bit longer in the back. Or did it simply share a body with Dodge? 

 

What was the engine size?  Didn't Mopar up the displacement slightly for each upward trajectory of line?  Obviously I am no 1930's Mopar expert but anecdotally I thought DeSoto was #2 behind Chryslers.   

B Jake Moran:

 

Chrysler Corporation was the body and powertrain sharing master by the mid-1930's, selling cars only slightly differentiated at ascending price points.  The 1937 line is a good example, taking the most common four door touring sedan, to wit:

 

Dodge Six, Series D5:  115" wb, 217.8 ci L-Head six-cylinder, FOB $830

DeSoto Six, Series S-3:  116" wb, 228.1 ci L-Head six-cylinder, FOB $880

Chrysler Royal Six Series C-16:  116" wb, 228.1 ci L-Head six-cylinder, FOB $920

 

Although these seem like minor differences now, in the context of the Depression era economy, those $40-$50 price differences were significant.  Chrysler structured his product lines in the Sloan Ladder manner to compete directly with the counterpart GM nameplates.    Plymouth, for all its seemingly identical appearance, actually was dimensionally smaller in order to more effectively price compete with Ford and Chevrolet.  As Chrysler's lowest-priced, highest volume seller, it's toolling could be amortized over more units.  From its introduction, Plymouth had been paired with the other three nameplates for the dealers to have a low-priced car in addition to the upmarket nameplate, also following the Sloan model.  

 

Make an astute observation...get a dissertation...

Steve

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Actually, the "Not Mine" section is also a good place to go to learn about vehicles I or we may not know much about so I always appreciate the information.  I'm 57, at one time I was deeply immersed in the old car hobby and my reference books would have provided me the answers noted above, but I have long since sold or discarded those books and references. 

 

I have always liked the 37 DeSotos, mostly for the front end treatments.  I just never really noted the truncated body.  As Hudsy notes, a person must have gotten an upgraded interior in a DeSoto over a Dodge.    Since Chrysler 6's had the same motor, same wheelbase, I guess it came down to brand loyalty.   

 

In any case, this vehicle noted above was purchased by the seller from a rural residence for either no cost or minimal cost, and according to the seller's wife, he has too many projects already, so yes you can own this one for the low, low price of $2500 or close best offer. 

 

As mentioned, very, very few of these are getting restored.  Therefore, I doubt that there are "$4,000" worth of parts on it.  Parts demand is consistent with restoration activity and there is none.  The grille is beautiful, but likely needs restored one way or another.  

 

It was a nice discussion.  The seller and I agreed to disagree and I won't bother her anymore.   But wouldn't this be an excellent restoration car for a young person not interested in "muscle cars."   

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52 minutes ago, JACK M said:

The hood release, (Mascot) for these are very rare as are the bumpers.

Blame that on the 50s hot rodders I guess.

The body looks just like the one I sold recently.

 

 

desoto 027.jpg

IM004729.JPG

Jack M,., you're right. The bumpers are probably worth the price of the car.

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On 12/5/2021 at 3:26 PM, B Jake Moran said:

At the end of the day, whether you are restoring a 1937 Chevy-Ford-Mopar - you will end up with a car similarly styled, similarly performing, so what difference does it make between them?   This DeSoto restored would or should provide the same old car hobby experience as most any other non CCCA Full Classic car from 1937.    It deserves to be restored, but in today's hyper expensive restoration costs.    A sad sentiment....

Very good points Jake.  You pay a premium for a Ford mainly due to the V8 but if you look at old SIA comps they are similar, and a pretty good compromise between roadability and earlier styling 36 to say 39.  I have always thought mopars of the era are undervalued. A girl in my neighborhood a few years older had a boyfriend who would come by in his 36 Dodge coupe and while not show condition, it was decent and stone stock.  A HS pal had 2 39 Chevys, one parts car he put back on the road and a restoration he still has today.  I looked at a couple earlier mopars before I got my 41 Plymouth back in the now prehistoric late 70s.  Better styling but those particular ones were really rough.  This era is  real sweet imho for non Classics. 

This car would be interesting restored for sure.

But, I stumbled on that blue 38 Buick century for sale in Buick section today, for $20k you can be rolling in a more upscale car.  I saw you were looking at it as well.  Issue is less about a $70k restoration, I think you would be hard pressed to get this car in driver condition, an at home resto for $20k, right?  If your looking for a nice example of that era, I would grab that Buick and put on some miles before hard winter hits! 

 

Edited by Steve_Mack_CT (see edit history)
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