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23/09/2010 1163

Chrysler - Flight Sweep II

Created in both convertible (I) and a hardtop (II) version, the 1955 Flight Sweep was meant to embody the spirit of the "Forward Look" which would come to dominate Chrysler styling efforts two years later. The front fenders, cowl, and body were welded integrally to teh frame, and the sheet metal swept under the bumpers. All exposed body joints were metal finished for a smooth surface appearance. Other exterior design features of the 4-passenger vehicle included clamshell-type front fender extensions, a sweeping body line and sharply swept front windshield, flared wheel openings, and rear tailfins. The chassis was a modified 1954 DeSoto. Both Flight Sweep models, along with the Chrysler Falcon, were displayed over the country during 1955 and 1956.

source: Chrysler Design Institute -




NEW YORK, Aug. 16 -- Chrysler Corporation today premiered three new "idea" cars -- the latest experiments in automotive styling and design -- at the Chrysler International Salon here.

The sleek, road-hugging models were conceived by Chrysler Corporation's Engineering Division with a two-fold purpose:

1. To translate into steel and glass advanced ideas from the stylists' drawing boards.

2. To provide "yardsticks" which help to measure public acceptance of new automotive styling concepts.

Although the cars will not be manufactured for sale to the public, some of the new ideas may be employed in the production cars of the future.

The new Forward Look trio consists of a four-passenger sports convertible named Flight Sweep I, a four-passenger sports hardtop which is a twin to the convertible and has been named Flight Sweep II, and the Falcon, a low-slung two-passenger roadster.

The cars are of a sports type, but were designed to suit American tastes and have no European influence whatever.

The powerful, eager-looking Flight Sweep I was built on a modified production chassis, and incorporates many unique details of construction. Smooth clean body lines, unbroken by seams of joints, were achieved by welding the front fenders, cowl and body to the frame. In addition, the sheet metal in the front and rear curves under the bumpers giving the car a finished, closed-in effect.

Despite the fact that it is is only 53-1/2 inches high, some seven inches lower than a 1955 Plymouth, Flight Sweep I seats four passengers in spacious comfort. Overall length of the Flight Sweep I is 207 inches, more than three inches longer than a Plymouth four-door sedan. It is equipped with separately adjustable air-foam cushioned individual seats and conventional rear seat with a center armrest.

The rakish look of the cars is emphasized by a windshield that slopes sharply at an angle of 56 degrees and upswept rear fenders and taillight that form into a trailing fin motif accented by a sweeping side character line. 

Other striking feature of the car include curved side window glass, fully flared wheel openings with ribbed chassis shields visible, and a unique two-piece counterbalanced deck lid with spare tire externally mounted in the lower lid and tire cover mounted in the upper lid.

The Flight Sweep II is identical to the Flight Sweep I with the exception of the interior and exterior colors and roof treatment. The companion cars were built to compare hardtop and convertible on the same basic body form.

The Falcon was built on a 105-inch wheelbase modified production chassis, and is only 51-1/8 inches high. It embodies American sports car styling as conceived by Chrysler Corporation engineers.

Prominent features of the Falcon include an externally mounted dual exhaust system, wide-horizon windshield with rearward sloping posts which are an application of windshields that warp around both at top and bottom; full wheel openings, and upswept rear fenders with recessed taillights.

A two-passenger sports roadster, the Falcon has individually adjustable seats and concave inner door panels which enhance the cockpit sensation.

Each of three new cars is equipped with PowerFlite fully-automatic transmission, full-time coaxial power steering, safety power brakes and electric window lifts.

The display in the Salon will be open to the public from August 17 through August 27, excluding Saturday, August 20, and Sunday, August 21.

source: Chrysler's official press release (1955-08-16)






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