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Specifications:

  • Six cylinder inline engine of 3957 cc displacement
  • Maximum 100 horsepower @ 3400 rpm
  • Maximum 185 Ft-Lbs torque @ 1200 rpm
  • Bore : 3.3 in | 85 mm
  • Stroke : 4.5 in | 114 mm
  • Rear wheel drive
  • Three-speed manual synchromesh transmission with overdrive
  • Car weight 3540 lbs
  • Lockheed four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes
  • Wheelbase 115.5 inches.

History:

The DeSoto Airflow was built by the Chrysler Corporation for sale through its DeSoto division during model years from 1934 to 1936.The 1934 Airflow models generated interest for their engineering innovations.The Airflow’s design represented a major attempt at aerodynamics. Headlights were flush mounted and it lacked the traditional upright radiator throat and decorative cap ornament.The car’s split windshield was angled to redirect the air. Front and rear fenders were smoother, more form fitting curves.The car had wider front seats and deeper back seats with more legroom.Because of the car’s unibody construction passengers rode within the frame of the car, and it boasted a stiffer body and better weight distribution. The engine was between the front wheels which is an arrangement most new cars have followed.

The interior was among the most luxurious and safest in the world.

Ventilation was outstanding due to airspace beneath the front seats and elaborate dual action windows, twin cowl vents and crank out windshields.

Interest in the Airflow was strong when it was introduced. Unfilled orders totaled 15,580 on April 30, 1934.

There were around 5000 DeSotos Airflows produced in 1936 with only 250 coupes.

The Airflow design remained mostly unchanged until 1936 when it was slightly revised.

In 1936 a new panel insert was bolted to the roof and served as the vehicles antenna for the radio. It is a unique feature that adds to its futuristic appearance.

In Europe the DeSoto Airflow was popular. The Monte Carlo Concours d’Elegence presented DeSoto with the Grand Prix award for aerodynamic styling.

In America it was not popular, by 1934 DeSoto deliveries declined 47% and only 13,940 Airflows were built for the model year. DeSoto fell from 10th to 13th place in the industry.

In 1936, the Airflow line was canceled.

Sources: Allpar, Chrysler

Restoration information:
Restoration photos courtesy of
Charles Restorations
www.charlesrestorations.com

Concours/show results:
Information to come.