After reading Jim Grey’s Curbside Classic on the 1968 Plymouth Valiant over the weekend, I continued thinking about the frontal styling on the car. I never liked this style of Valiant as well as the later versions, but there was something about the look of the ’68′s snout that bothered me. It finally hit me. The front of the 1967-68 Valiant is almost a direct copy of the rear of the 1966 Plymouth Fury line. I should have realized this right away, as a former four-year owner (and periodic washer and waxer) of a 1966 Fury III.
The similarity is striking. On the Fury, the sculpting and indentation of the deck lid and the center of the rear panel was always unique. I never cared for the high crown in the center that tapered down on either side, but others certainly disagree. This feature is picked up almost exactly on the Valiant. Ditto the convex rear panel with the center crease – again, there it is on the front of the Valiant. I couldn’t find a good picture of a Fury I with no reverse lights, but one of those (with bright trim added) might have completed the look almost exactly. Or, in the alternative, imagine a Valiant with quad headlights with parking lights between, a’la Oldsmobile. Finally, there is the bumper shape. Again, almost a direct translation.
This got me wondering whether the front and rears of any other different related cars have ever been so similar. But rather than hurt my little head thinking about it, I decided to kick this one to the curbsiders. Do any other examples come to mind?