The Plymouth Valiant is a compact car that was from 1959 to 1976 of Plymouth, the junior mark of the third largest American automaker Chrysler produced.
His model political task was the same as in the almost simultaneously introduced competing models Chevrolet Corvair and Ford Falcon. During the fifties the American cars had become bigger and heavier. This was quite in keeping with the wishes of a large part of the clientele, but the big American manufacturers had thus created a gap in the market that was filled by the American Motors Corporation and imported vehicles, the first place to the VW Beetle. The sales success of AMC and VW was the late fifties so great that he could no longer be overlooked. The large American manufacturers finally responded in the fall of 1959 almost simultaneously with the introduction of its compact cars.
Plymouth here was not as brave as Chevrolet, but braver than Ford The Valiant was technically conventionally and had a front built, " Slant Six" said six-cylinder in-line engine at 2800 or 3700cm ³, but showed his body very own, something to get used to the style. But it turned out that Ford with the smooth and straightforward shaped Falcon had greater success.
Plymouth responded in 1962 with a model change towards a less eye-catching body shape. In 1964 there was the Valiant also to keep up with the competition, at the request with a 4500 cc V8 engine.
Another model change in 1966 led to a rather angular body. In this form, the Valiant remained for ten years until 1976 in the offer, which was quite unusual for American cars in this era.
Successor was finally the Plymouth Volare, which had been built only a year long parallel to the Valiant in 1975.
The dealer of Dodge, the second volume brand of the Chrysler Group wanted to participate in the growing demand for compact cars. Thus appeared in 1960, a slightly modified sister model of the Valiant under the name Dodge Lancer. This was however built only two years. After the model change in 1962 was named the Dodge compact car Dodge Dart. The Dart was how the Valiant offered until 1976.
In Australia, where there was not the Plymouth brand, the Valiant was sold under the name Chrysler Valiant. That would have been unthinkable in the U.S., because there was the brand name of Chrysler until the first oil crisis in 1973, reserved exclusively for the big luxury cars. The Valiant was so successful that it was produced from 1962 also there in Australia. This meant that the Australian Valiant differed in detail from the North American model. Nevertheless, the Australian car initially based on the U.S. model. Until 1971 appeared with the Valiant VH a completely independent model, which was not incorporated in the United States. This car was built until 1981, most recently after the sale of the Australian Chrysler branch, under the rule of Mitsubishi.
In Switzerland, the Valiant was built in 1960 for the AMAG Montagegwerk in Schinznach. With the slogan " MONTAGE SUISSE - added value through Swiss mounting " the vehicles were legally marketed successfully. The parts came mostly from the U.S., but discs, carpets, seats, coolers and the like came from Swiss production. Took the assembly in the United States primarily in Production Line around 6 hours, it was state in Switzerland 148 hours handmade! In 1972, the last Valiant were mounted. In addition to the Valiant, who was called as in Australia Chrysler Valiant, also Dodge Dart and Lancer, Valiant Coupe and Dodge VIP were mounted.
In the fall of 1969 Plymouth brought out a slightly smaller coupe, which was intended to compete with the newly introduced Ford Maverick. It had a separate, corresponding to the taste of the time body, but technically based largely on the Valiant. Initially, the coupe Valiant Duster was called, later only Plymouth Duster. The Duster was how the Valiant, produced until 1976.
In Steven Spielberg's thriller movie duel of 1971, provides the main character, played by Dennis Weaver, in a Valiant a desperate battle with a huge tanker truck who wants to destroy him.
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