Cohort Pic(k) of the Day: 1972 Chrysler Town & Country – Do Austrians And Germans Have A Thing About Fuselage Mopars?

The other day Jim Klein showed us the brown Plymouth fuselage wagon he spotted in Berlin, and today T.Minor posted this brown Chrysler wagon shot “somewhere in Lower Austria”. The CC Effect, or do Germans and Austrians have a particular thing about these?

The love for Mopar fuselage cars in that part of the world is not exactly new either. When I spent the summer of 1969 in Innsbruck, there was a splendid new black Dodge Polara four door hardtop parked about two blocks away. Not a visitor; it lived there, and I saw it being driven once in a while. It looked just as big in contrast to the VWs and Fiat 850s it was parked between as this wagon does above. It even had the rare optional “Super-Lite”

This is the closest I can find on the web, which shows the Super-Lite. Has Prof. Stern ever commented on these? The one in Innsbruck was a Polara, without that fake lop-bumper chrome trim. And it didn’t have a vinyl roof or whitewall tires, which really enhanced my appreciation of it, as I rather disliked that faddish affectation at the time.

I used to make a point to walk by it regularly, as it presented such a visual and mental paradox for me. I was wallowing in all of the new European cars at the time, including the new six-cylinder BMWs, W114/115 Mercedes, Audi 100, and others. But this huge black whale looked quite awesome, and parked in front of 200 year old building really enhanced the juxtaposition. Yes, American cars are cool too, especially so when they’re not everywhere. Contrast and scarcity make things look so much more attractive.

I spent a lot of time staring at that car, wondering just who it was that decided to buy a new black Polara sedan. It must have cost them quite a bit, in relative terms, as this was when the dollar was still fixed to 24 Shillings. obviously they knew what they wanted, and they got it.

Let’s leave 1969 and get back to 2023 and this 1972 Chrysler Town & Country. I can see the appeal for Europeans, as in certain respects the fuselage Mopars are something of the ultimate really big American car, inasmuch as they are just so exuberant and expansive and…big. The biggest non-limo car ever made in the US was a fuselage, the 1973 Imperial, at a regal 235.3″ long.

This T&C is a mere 225″ long, but fuselages always look even longer than they are. And wider. That’s their secret sauce.