1940 Plymouth PII Business Coupe Registration no. WXG 752 Chassis no. 15074936 Engine no. P11290145
The introduction of a lower-price line - Plymouth - to compete head-on with Ford and Chevrolet, helped Chrysler Corporation weather the Depression years. Launched in 1928, the four-cylinder Plymouth, although not a revolutionary design, nevertheless incorporated hydraulic braking, full-pressure lubrication and aluminium pistons, a specification its rivals would not match for a decade. The car was an instant success and by 1933 Plymouth was the US auto industry's third biggest seller, just behind Ford. Together with DeSoto, another Chrysler Corporation marque, Plymouths were assembled in Mortlake Road, Kew from 1932 to 1939 and badged as Chryslers, being given the names of London suburbs such as Croydon, Richmond, Kew and Wimbledon. Confusing matters still further, Chrysler added a Plymouth to the range for 1938!
Powered by a 201.3ci (3.3-litre) sidevalve six, the P11 was Plymouth's most affordable line for 1941 and was available in no fewer than seven different body styles plus a rolling chassis. With getting on for 24,000 sold, the three-seater Business Coupe, as seen here, was the second most popular car in the line-up after the five-seater sedan. One of the latter would claim its place in motoring history in 1941 when it became the first car to be driven from Detroit, Michigan to the tip of South America, an often perilous journey of 15,745 miles that took eight months. Those pre-war Plymouths were certainly tough.
A 1941 model built towards the end of 1940, this P11 Business Coupe was fully restored in the USA in 2013 and brought to the UK in the spring of 2015 (duties paid). Owned by a knowledgeable collector of American cars, it has been taken to local classic car events and is described as running well, while the original chassis is said never to have been welded. This delightful classic American is offered with a V5C registration document.