While we all know that the latest Dodge Dart at All Star Dodge near St. Louis is a wonderful machine, but we want to go back a little bit further in time and take a look at the third generation of the Dodge Dart. We like to know a bit about where a model comes from and so we can speculate on where it’s going.
For 1963, Dodge made a last-minute decision to drop the Lancer name in favor of Dart for Dodge’s newly designed “senior compact”, a marketing term referring to the wheelbase having grown to 111 in (2,819 mm) from the Lancer’s 106.5 in (2,705 mm). This longer wheelbase used the same A-body suspension of the Valiant and defunct Lancer, and would underpin all Darts from 1963 to 1976 except the 1963–1966 station wagons which used the Valiant’s (106 in (2,692 mm) wheelbase) and the 1971–1976 Demon/Sport which used the Plymouth Duster’s 108 in (2,743 mm) wheelbase. The longer wheelbase gave more rear seat legroom than the previous Lancer or the contemporaneous Valiant. The Dart was available as a 2- or 4-door sedan, a 2-door hardtop coupe, a station wagon, and a convertible. Three trim levels were offered: the low-spec 170, the high-spec 270, and the premium GT, which was available only as a 2-door hardtop or convertible. The 1963 Dart has a turning radius of 38.9 ft (11.9 m).
The Dart was an instant market success, with 1963 sales up sharply compared to those of the 1962 Lancer. The Dart remained extremely popular through the end of the Dart’s production run in 1976 in comparison to the Ford Falcon and the Chevrolet Nova. (This information was compiled from dodge.com, classiccars.com and wikipedia.com.)
You can still get your own Dodge Dart at All Star Dodge today! Their friendly team is ready to assist you!