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Make: Chrysler Special
Type: Ghia
Year: 1953
Price: Ask price

Chrysler Special Ghia 1953 LHD

 

In the early fifties some US automobile manufacturers, looking for a more modern European style, planned to collaborate with the small but thriving Italian carrozzerie, which were amongst the last custom coachbuilding firms left in the world.

 

In 1951, Chrysler signed a collaboration agreement with Carrozzeria Ghia from Torino. Chrysler chief stylist Virgil Exner and Luigi Segre and his partner Mario Boano from Ghia joined forces.

 

After a couple of flamboyant show pieces, the subtle genesis of this collaboration resulted in a masterpiece: the Chrysler Special, which was first displayed at the Paris salon of October 1952. This Paris show car received so much attention that the French Chrysler importer and Chrysler's export manager decided that it would be good to produce a small series of 18 cars (6 for Chrysler and 12 for Ghia customers).

 

These limited production Specials were based upon the standard wheelbase Chrysler New Yorker platform. It was the car that sent Chrysler on its path to the famous "Forward Look" design landmark.

 

Because of their uniqueness, the total estimated production of 18 cars had a high survival rate and at least 8 of them are still known to exist worldwide. One of them is exhibited in the Walter P. Chrysler museum in the USA.

 

Chassis number 7231533 was delivered in 1953 by the Chrysler importer France Motors in Neuilly near Paris to Mr. Leon Coulibeuf, a passionate competition car enthusiast, and later that year shown by his wife at the Concours d'Elegance of Enghien-les-Bains as featured in the September 1953 issue of l'Action Automobile.

 

The history of this Chrysler Special after the ownership of Coulibeuf  is not very well known. In the 90ies the car was discovered in an abandoned state by Jacques Pelve, a Chrysler dealer in Brittany-France.

At that time, the Special retained still her original colours (white/red), original engine (demonstrated by the Chrysler build sheet) and original French registration 4756 CC 75.

 

Jacques Pelve undertook a complete nut & bolt restoration of the car, repainting this Chrysler Special in two-tone blue. The restoration was completed in the summer of 2001, just in time for the Concours d'Elegance Bagatelle, where this Chrysler Special was very well received by the public.

 

In October 2014 this Chrysler Special won the prize for "Most Exciting Design" at the Zoute Concours d'Elegance in Knokke-Belgium, and could be admired once again at the 2015 Concorso della Villa D'Este. 

 

Price: ASK

 

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