by Gerard Wilson
This is the fifth article in a series. For details on production records and how these numbers were calculated, see the first article in this series, “Plymouth U.S. Production Figures 1946-2001.”
These tables are not definitive or fully accurate. They are the best I could do with the information which I was able to uncover. I would welcome correspondence with anyone who is interested in this material and can correct any errors or misinformation on my part.
— Gerard Wilson, May 2013
The Valiant was introduced for 1960, an all-new car specifically designed to be a compact, not a “scaled down intermediate.” It a separate make for 1960, with no “Plymouth” identification, although the only place a U.S. buyer could buy one was a Chrysler-Plymouth dealer (or one of the very rare Plymouth standalones). For 1961, it became a “Plymouth Valiant,” with Plymouth identification in and out, and shared sales materials. Then, for 1962, it went back to being a “Valiant:” no identification anywhere, separate marketing for each.
The reasons for this switching around are not known [though Curtis Redgap provided some insights] but certainly are consistent with Chrysler's management turmoil between 1960 and 1962. Becoming a Plymouth for 1961 is best explained by Curtis Redgap, who pointed out that Plymouth fell dramatically from its usual third place in US brand sales until Valiant was added back into its sales totals. Many of these cars were registered as Plymouth Valiants and obviously all belong together.
This table follows Chrysler's designations, but for completeness, 167,244 Plymouth Valiants were built in the U.S. for 1961 and are recorded in the 1961 Plymouth table. Adding these, the three year total is 500,412 cars built. Entries are published U.S.-only model year totals.
In Canada, the Valiant brant had a longer history, because of the way dealers were set up. Before DeSoto was dropped at the end of the 1961 model year, Chrysler had maintained both DeSoto-Dodge and Chrysler-Plymouth dealer networks in Canada. These became Chrysler-Plymouth or Dodge-Chrysler dealers. Both sold the Valiant, without a Dodge or Plymouth badge. The Canadian 1960-1962 Valiant was almost identical to the U.S. version.
Valiant was redesigned for 1963; the Canadian and U.S. Valiant wagons were the same, except for the 1965 Custom 200 wagon which used a Dart front end clip. The same 2.693 mm wheelbase unibody platform was also used for the Barracuda and the 1965-only 100 and Custom 100 series. No wagons or Barracudas were built in Canada for 1966.
The Canadian V100, V200, 200, Custom 200 and Signet 200 sedans, hardtops and convertibles used the 2.819 mm wheelbase unibody platform also used for the U.S. Dodge Dart, which was not sold in Canada. The 1963 and 1964 models had a Valiant front clip, but for 1965 - 1966, a Dart front end clip was used.
Valiant production in Canada was temporarily suspended after 1966, replaced by imports of Plymouth Valiants and Dodge Darts from the U.S. Dart/Valiant. Production in Canada resumed in 1970 and is reported in the Dodge and Plymouth tables.
Model year production is estimated from information available.
Also by Gerard Wilson: Chrysler 1945-48 • Chrysler 1949-52 • Chrysler 1953-54 • Chrysler 1955-56
and Production numbers and histories, 1946-onwards
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