We all know how due to Gas Crises I and II, the grand luxury cars of the Big Three had to trim the fat, sometimes with less than stellar results. But did you know that even before gas went up, there was a concentrated effort to make a small luxury car?
Back in the mid-to-late-Sixties, some of the Chrysler engineers felt the cars they were building were too big (said engineers were driving VW Beetles and Mini Coopers at the time).
Somehow they managed to wrangle serious money from R&D for a pet project to drastically shrink the flagship Imperial, shortening them and equipping them with an experimental 250 hp version of the Slant Six.
Mad with power, they even chopped up an ultra-pricey Ghia-built Crown Imperial. They called it the Tiara. That was the last straw. The band of engineers were sent packing and Chrysler destroyed all the prototypes and blueprints. The engineers responsible were never heard from again, though there are rumors they worked on the 1985 GM C-body and ’86 E-body.
Happy April Fools’ Day, everybody!