(first posted 3/16/2012) The restyled full-size 1974 Plymouths and Dodges were not launched in the best of times. Introduced just as the first gas crisis was ramping up, these cars were not exactly a hit, though its Dodge cousin would go on to fame in The Blues Brothers.
The fuselage look of 1969-73 was gone. More squared-off styling was featured in all full-size Chrysler products. A full line of two- and four-door hardtops, a 4-door sedan, and station wagons were available. Plymouth Furys and Dodge Monacos could easily be mistaken for a 1973 Buick, clearly the source of most of its styling cues. The Dodges were even more obvious with a muted version of the Buick sweepspear stamped into its bodysides.
The 1974 Plymouth’s and Dodge’s source of inspiration…
The 1976 Royal Monaco. No, it’s not a Buick. Really.
The gas crisis could not have hit at a worse time, as Chrysler was already in the middle of one of its periodic crises. It was probably a good thing that they had the captive-import Colts and Arrows and the Valiant/Dart to sell to fuel-conscious customers, or it would have been even worse.
Not much was new for 1975. The mid-size Satellites were renamed Furys, so all full-size Plymouths became Gran Furys. The new intermediate Fury followed the design of the full-sizers and new for ’75 Cordoba with more formal styling.
A new Gran Fury Brougham series had a a restyled front end with single headlights, plusher interior and a standard 400 CID V8 with Torqueflite. Gran Fury Customs and Gran Furys retained the quad headlight front end with a new, busier grille. They also had the Torqueflite automatic but made do with a 360 V8. While sales of the full-size cars would pick up to some extent after 1974, this generation of Gran Fury did not last very long and was discontinued after 1977.
I found this ’75 pillared sedan in the back of a local dealership. It is in remarkable shape except for a torn driver’s seat. It has the optional Premier wheel covers and a vinyl roof, but sorry, it’s not a Brougham. The claimed 31,000 miles are believable. Hopefully the new buyer will keep it the way it is and not turn it into a Bluesmobile. I love that movie, but come on, this car is a time capsule – when Broughams roamed the land and cursive emblems were standard equipment.