Introduced in the late 30s, Windsor returned to the famous automaker’s line after the war, strongly reminiscent of the 1942 models. The only innovations were a handbrake warning signal and a new grille. Despite this, the automobile accounted for 62.9% of the company’s sales.
Windsor appeared in the Chrysler line in 1939 and like the junior series Royal was based on a DeSoto chassis with a 122.5″ (3112 mm) wheelbase, powered by a 3957 cm3 inline 6-cylinder engine in 1939-1940 and 4106 cm3 (115 or 120 hp) in 1941. In 1941, the vehicle was available in Business Coupe, Club Coupe, Sedan, Town Sedan, Brougham, Convertible, 8-passenger Sedan, and Limousine body styles, priced from $1,045 to $1,492. By the early 1940s, the Chrysler Corporation was boldly established in the high-end luxury car sector. The flagship Imperial was completed by the New Yorker, Saratoga, and Windsor models. The forced four-year time-out because of WWII meant that in the post-war period (1946-48) the company’s automobiles were only slightly updated pre-war vehicles. And yet, these big automobiles had a steady demand – the American consumers were not particularly picky. Windsor, like other company vehicles of the time, had a reputation for being reliable but slightly conservative.
Source: California Classics
Despite the most challenging economic problems, the 30s were marked by innovations and breakthroughs in the automotive industry. During these years, such iconic Chrysler automobiles appeared as the innovative Airflow – the first American automobile with a semi-supporting all-metal body with the principles of aerodynamics, Imperial – with a typical long triangular hood and Airstream design of its time, renamed later Royal. Finally, in 1939, an intermediate 6-cylinder Windsor was introduced between the Imperial and the Royal. In the run-up to World War II, Chrysler no longer took risks with the design of mass-produced automobiles, but created show cars for promotional tours throughout the country. In 1940, the Windsor line included the new Town & Country Station Wagon, a 4-door sedan with a fastback metal roof, wood doors, trunk lid, and rear corner panels. Its salon was with two or three rows of seats. Less than 2,000 of these vehicles were sold before the start of WWII. Like all automakers, Chrysler stopped making civilian vehicles and started producing tanks, guns, military trucks, and aircraft engines, becoming America’s eighth-largest military equipment manufacturer. 1946 was marked by the automaker’s return to the American market with five pre-war vehicles: Windsor (3 or 5-seater coupe, 2 or 4-door sedan, limousine, convertible), Royal, Saratoga, New Yorker and Imperial Crown (limousine). The first one was equipped with a 4106 cm3 (114 hp) inline 6-cylinder engine and accounted for 62.9% of the company’s sales.
In 1946 Windsor, as one of the several resumed pre-war automobiles, received rich standard equipment: interior trim in two-tone wool fabric, floor carpeting, direction indicators, an electric clock, two-speed electric wipers, luggage compartment lighting, and Safe Guard hydraulic brakes. The convertible was additionally equipped with an electrified convertible top lift, and the presence of interior and exterior rear-view mirrors. Convertibles in the 1946 model year were produced in 1935 automobiles, four-door sedans with an eight-cylinder engine (C-39N) – 99 cars, and with a six-cylinder (C-38W) – 127 vehicles. External changes in the 1946 models, in comparison with the pre-war period, primarily affected the grille and bumper. The cost of a convertible in 1946 was $2,743, and a sedan was $2,366. 1946 release was a modernized version of the Royal with all the features of the latter. Though affordable, the vehicle offered luxury on par with the more upscale New Yorker line but was powered by a more modest L-head six-cylinder engine. Signs with the name of the car were visible on both sides of the hood, and the optional “Highlander” interior could be found in both open and closed models. The 4-door sedan/limousine models were available on 139.5 “long” wheelbase chassis. The wood-bodied Town and Country were considered part of the model’s series, although serial numbers were not integrated. All Town and Country sedans, except 100 eight-cylinder sedans built in late 1946, were fitted with the L-head six-cylinder engine offered on all Windsors.
The first fully armored cars were made for Franklin Roosevelt. His fleet included several Chrysler models, including the first post-war Windsor.
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