This brings new meaning to the expression “black and white”.
And only two doors. After the Mustangs and the few CHP Camaros, we may never see those again. Though I’m starting to see a lot more new CHP Chargers again recently, rather than Explorers. So if Stallantis (?) drops the Charger but keeps the Challenger, two door patrol cars might come back. But whitewalls? Never.
They were all two door sedans before 1960.
In one year, at least some of the CHP Ford Crown Victorias came with full chrome wheel covers.
Here’s one of those I took around 1990-ish…
FWIW, eBay photo of a Chevy/CHP car likewise (photo labeled “Test Vehicle,” however):
I don’t know. When ever I hear the term” black and white” I think of a Fenton’s ice cream sundae.
I love Fenton’s, we used to visit the Piedmont Ave (?) one. Since immortalized in several Pixar movies…
I know the address by memory, 4226 Piedmont just a few miles from Cal and Orinda where I lived, off the Broadway exit of 24.
Maybe part of the Governor’s special detail or something like that? Looks like an official gathering of some sort. Every picture I’ve seen of vintage CHP cars shows black walls, even when they went upscale and bought Buicks.
The man in the center could well be Governor Goodwin J. (Goody) Knight.
Since the lockdowns I’ve been retreating to childhood by watching Highway Patrol episodes on METV. Recently I was watching Dan Matthews driving a 1956 Buick and was surprised to see four portholes on the front fender – a Roadmaster! Looking closer I noticed it was a four-door hardtop – a Roadmaster Riviera! No whitewalls IIRC. Quite different from most of the plain two-doors Dan is driving during most episodes. I guess ZIV Productions used what was available during any given week. I’m amazed to recall that not only do most of the criminals wear suits and ties but they also often are driving convertibles with the tops down. Great show to see 50’s cars in action.
I know there is at least one Perry Mason episode where Lt. Tragg gets into a 1957 Roadmaster Riviera with whitewalls at the beginning of one scene but arrives at the crime scene in a pedestrian Special sedan later in the scene.
“Highway Patrol” is good for a display of period cars, but that’s about it. Broderick Crawford was a good actor with some classic movie roles, but with HP he must have needed the money – badly.
Crawford was a raging alcoholic. If you watch some of the episodes he displays facial bruises and split lips from falls and accidents incurred due to his drunken episodes. The make-up budget must have been limited. They had to keep booze away from him as they were filming. At one point they couldn’t have him driving on state highways because his license had been taken away. The scripts reflect the simple-minded law and order ethos of the 1950’s. Besides the cars, it’s fun to see budding stars in the making (Leonard Nimoy, Clint Eastwood, et al).
It was a 1955 Buick Century, not a1956 Roadmaster. And, it was a 2 door sedan, not a hardtop. Buick made a special 2 door Century sedan (with the four portholes) for the CHP in 1955. Half had Dynaflow, half manual. The ‘55 Buick that Broderick Crawford drove in Highway Patrol was an actual CHP car.
The history of Buicks (to say nothing of all the other makes, from Oldsmobile to Mercury to Dodge) used on Highway Patrol over the course of several years is much more complicated than your reference to one single car. In the episode referenced above Crawford was driving a four-porthole 1956 Buick four-door hardtop. The scenes were fleeting and I thought it was Roadmaster not realizing it could have been a Century or a Super as they also had four portholes and came in the four-door Riviera hardtop style. According to IMDB the car I saw was a Super:
“In mid 1956, the CHP dropped its support of this show over differences in storylines and presentation, and refused to supply any more squad cars. The producers quickly acquired an incorrect Buick Super four-door hardtop to complete that season. Accurate squad replicas were ordered for the 1957 season, but the 1958 season cars differed from reality. The trailer hitches seen on the squad cars were for towing the film company’s equipment trailers to shooting locations. Brand names of suspect vehicles were never scripted. They were always described as ‘a green coupe,’ ‘a tan station wagon,’ or “a dark blue sedan.“
I’d think the CHP would buy V8s. The V8 badge on a ’56 was just in front of the taillight. Looks like *something* there, but it’s hard to tell.
The 1956 CHP Dodges were all equipped with D-500 V-8’s, putting out 260 h.p. D-500 cars we’re identified by small crossed flags on the lower trunk lid, which the featured car appears to have.
The Catalinas that Detectives Flint and Acarro drove in ‘Naked City; often sported whitewalls. On 4 dr hardtops no less. I enjoy watching it for the lost NYC locations and the cars.
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