1948 DeSoto DeLuxe Club Coupe
• One of 2,957 DeSoto DeLuxe Club Coupes made in 1948
• 237 CID L-head straight six-cylinder engine
• Gyrol Fluid-Drive semi-automatic transmission and 3.90 gearing
• Briggs Body
• Royal Maroon exterior and maroon interior
• Documentation includes a DeSoto Shop Manual 1941-1948 plus instructions on how to use the Fluid-Drive transmission
After World War II, some marques unveiled new models within a year or two while others simply re-used their pre-war bodies and just change some bits of trim. This 1948 DeLuxe Club Coupe is one of 2,957 models made that year with a body by Briggs. This handsome and rarely seen DeSoto comes from a local consigner who has decided to part with this stunning steed, looking for a new home!
The car’s Royal Maroon exterior is in overall very good order, with only minor flaws visible close up. The bodywork is straight and solid, the car’s engine bay is extremely tidy, the battery appears new, the cargo area looks great and the chrome bumpers are sharp.
The car has whitewall radials, size 22575R15 at all four corners. Each one is mounted on a wire wheel cover. All tires and wheels are in good, original condition.
Standard equipment on DeLuxes included dual sun visors, dual two-speed electric wipers, directional signals with parking brake light, cigar lighter, stainless steel trim rings, illuminated glove box with lock, dual
outside door locks, map light, counter balanced luggage compartment lid, illuminated luggage compartment, right and left front door arm rests, interior door locks and bumper guards front and rear.
Under the hood is Chrysler’s 237 CID straight six-cylinder engine. Behind the motor is one of the interesting semi-automatics from the late 1940s, Gyrol Fluid Drive.
Fluid Drive was not automatic in any way. With the semi-automatic transmissions, the driver shifted manually, selecting reverse or a low range and a high range. Each ‘range’ had two speeds. To shift between them, the driver accelerated then released pressure on the accelerator. In high range, this shift point was about 23 mph. Once the transmission shifted into high speed range, the driver again depressed the accelerator pedal, and continued accelerating. Solenoids on the transmission connected to the carburetor and ignition system momentarily interrupted engine operation to allow trouble-free shifting.
The driver could down-shift for passing by fully depressing the accelerator. The clutch was needed to change between low and high range. The fluid drive system allowed the driver to stop at a light or in traffic and remain in gear without depressing the clutch. The driver could, if not concerned with fast acceleration, drive the car all day long in high range, stopping and starting, without ever having to touch the clutch pedal or gearshift lever unless faster acceleration or reversing was required. For this reason, DeSotos and Dodges were favored by city taxicab companies from the mid-Forties to early Fifties.
The semi-automatic came under a variety of names - Vacamatic, Prestomatic, Fluidmatic (Chrysler), Simplimatic, Tip-Toe Hydraulic Shift (DeSoto) and Gyromatic (Dodge). The car also has a 3.90:1 rear end.
Inside, the car’s maroon cloth interior is in overall very good order. The bench seats look fantastic, while the matching carpet and headliner are in very good shape. The two-spoke, DeLuxe steering wheel looks great. The metal instrument panel, with a full array of gauges, is in very good order, as are the inner door panels. Completed the interior is an AM/FM stereo with a cassette deck set into the floorpan over the transmission tunnel.
Documentation includes a DeSoto Shop Manual 1941-1948 plus instructions on how to use the Fluid-Drive transmission.
Competition to this DeSoto in 1948 included Dodge’s Custom Club Coupe, Hudson’s Super Six, Oldsmobile’s Dynamic 66 Club Coupe and Pontiac’s Torpedo Eight Sport Coupe.
One of the rarer stars in the automotive universe, DeSoto was Chrysler Corporation’s equivalent to Buick, Hudson, Oldsmobile, Mercury and briefly, Edsel. The DeSoto DeLuxe represented the company’s base model until 1953. If you’re after a post-war car uncommon today, one that will turn heads at a car show or cruise night event, you couldn’t go wrong with this 1948 DeSoto. Stop by MotoeXotica Classic Cars today and see it for yourself!
This car is currently located at our facility in St. Louis, Missouri. Current mileage on the odometer shows 87,084 miles. It is sold as is, where is, on a clean and clear, mileage exempt title. GET OUT AND DRIVE!!!
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