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Some thoughts on the B-body

Discussion in 'Other classic cars' started by voiceofstl, Dec 22, 2017.

  1. voiceofstl

    voiceofstl Well-Known Member

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    The B body came out in 62 thinking thanks to rumors the GM was going to shrink the impala. It lasted till 79.
    It was a bit differant then Gm or Ford. Starting in the mid 60's its competion was the mid size field, but its quite a bit bigger then the Malibu ot Fairlane Even though it was bigger outside and inside I belive it was a few pounds lighter then GM and Fords mid size cars. Was there some confusion among the general public what it was? A small full size car or what.?
    The update in 73 with the TorsionQuiet suspenion made the b body run real smooth and quiet. I can't figure out why the public still went with Gm and Fords.
    The B body may have lasted alot long except for Chryslers curse for bad timeing and dumb decisions.
    When the R/B body came out Chrysler had GM and Ford to look to for examples and some how they still screwed it up. I don't hate the R/b body but it could have been so much better.
    COMMENTS:
     
  2. Bearhawke

    Bearhawke Things happen for a reason

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    In a nutshell: poor quality control and some questionable basic designs i.e. offering both Federal and Calif spec 440's, etc. IMHO Chrysler should've certified all of its engines to Calif smog standards but with catalyst delete IF certain drivetrain packages would pass emissions for Federal markets.
     
  3. Fast Eddie

    Fast Eddie Valued Member
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    Having worked at the Chrysler Engineering Center from 1966 to 2007 in the Motorsports Group I can give you some feedback. When the oil embargo happened in 1974 we all know large car sales tanked and Chrysler was especially hurt by this. When Thanksgiving came around in 1974 Chrysler completely shut down the Engineering Center and laid everyone off. Except for a few people who were running the emission engines around the clock ALL engineering work on ALL programs came to a screeching halt. This had never happened before. It took over a year to get most of the workers back who were coming back. Needless to say all ongoing programs suffered terribly, especially the "R" body program because all work was concentrated on bringing out the 4 door Omni & Horizon in 1978. The launch of the "R" body was considered the worst launch in the companies history and it showed in the final product. There was a story going around back then that when Iaccoca took over they took him to see the "R" body production line to see it and to drive one of the cars. They had it timed that when he got there the car he would be driving would be coming off the line and naturally that particular car had been given the royal treatment as far as assembly. So, when he got there they opened the door for him to get in and he said nope, I want to drive the car behind it. He was no dummy.................he knew what was going on.
     
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  4. JA Cumbo

    JA Cumbo Enjoying the ride.
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    Knowing Iacocca's temperament, I would have hated to have been someone responsible with QA, production or anyone in a management position involved with the R body that day.
     
  5. ImperialCrown

    Level III Supporter

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    I was at the dealership when Iacocca came in. Quality and morale rebounded, but Chrysler's survival was still uncertain.
    The K-cars helped and then the minivans really helped.
    The first B-body was a decent size. Too bad it got the 'plucked chicken' look, but the Exner style was still there before it morphed into the 'flying brick' Engel style.
    The R-body was a logical downsize and replacement for the aging and ungainly C-body. The 318 and 360 was plenty of torque for them. I did see some slant-6 Newports.
     
  6. Scrounge

    Scrounge Well-Known Member

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    I think the B bodies reached their peak during the last half of the 1960s. I personally prefer the Belvedere/Satellite group from the '66 to '70 model years; I owned a '69 Satellite sedan during the late 1970s, which, were it not for having to drive it during Michigan's winters, might still be running (or at least not rusted). Some of the early '70s models were ok, but you could tell the increasing influence of General Motors designs.

    Let's not forget that the government safety and pollution standards were more of a burden on Chrysler during the 1970s than Ford and GM. Attention to them meant that another area had to suffer, and it seemed to be quality control.
     
  7. valiant67

    valiant67 Rich Corinthian Leather
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    I guess they learned something about rust prevention between the last of the B bodies and the R bodies.
     
  8. voiceofstl

    voiceofstl Well-Known Member

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    Looks of a car is up to the owner. I thought the early 70;s B bodys were much modern looking and looked pretty slick and untill they got smogged down they were still the reliable B body as the 60;s.
     
  9. rapidtrans

    rapidtrans Well-Known Member

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    IMO the '68 Charger is the "B" body of all "B" bodies. Also my first car and rusted badly. Next i had a 69 Sport Satellite with a 383 2bbl. That car was a sleeper!
     
  10. Scrounge

    Scrounge Well-Known Member

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    Yes, purely subjective. To me, the early 1970's models looked better with 2 doors than 4. The Satellite Sebring and the Chargers were attractive.

    This '77 Monaco Brougham also looks nice, but on first glance, it looks like a Chevy Monte Carlo:

    Classic 77 Dodge Monaco Brougham 33000 Org Miles!! (at https://austin.craigslist.org/cto/d/classic-77-dodge-monaco/6397506806.html )
     
    #10 Scrounge, Dec 26, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2017
  11. Fast Eddie

    Fast Eddie Valued Member
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    I bought this Satellite new in August of 1970..........black top and interior with Burnt Orange metallic paint. This was a real sweet ride.....one of my favorite cars ever.
    1970 Satellite taken in 1971.jpg
     
  12. voiceofstl

    voiceofstl Well-Known Member

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    I had a used 79 Magnum with 360 4brl. Who ever ordered was strange, Bucket seats with no console, just the hump. It was smogged down but it was still very smooth running and pretty good pickup for a 79. It had the problem of the paint peeling off.
    When GM downsized in 77 it sold tons of the Impala but the 4 door B body was just a hair smaller and alot cheaper and much more durable but apparently more folks liked the GM.
     
  13. JA Cumbo

    JA Cumbo Enjoying the ride.
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    Sounds like it might have been a sales bank car.
     
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  14. valiant67

    valiant67 Rich Corinthian Leather
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    Yep, they built bunches of them, parked them at the Windsor Fairgrounds then bribed dealers to take them. And some odd option combinations.
     

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