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August 4, 1928 – DeSoto is founded
This Day

August 4, 1928 – DeSoto is founded

1929 DeSoto On this day in 1928, Walter Chrysler founded DeSoto, which provided Chrysler Corporation a vehicle line aimed at the mid priced auto market. The plan was to pit the brand against Oldsmobile, Willys, Studebaker and other similarly valued automobiles. However, Chrysler acquired Dodge Brothers soon after DeSoto made its 1929 model year debut, giving Chrysler two mid priced brands. Additionally, Chrysler had just announced Plymouth about a month prior, which was to be Chrysler’s entry level vehicle. Chrysler was soon trying different juggling acts to make their entire line up profitable. DeSoto had a strong first year, selling 81,065 cars in 1929. This broke a record for the most vehicles sold for a new model of car in 365 days. Chrysler priced Dodge slightly above DeSoto at...
September 1, 1941 – DeSoto introduces automatic hidden headlights
This Day

September 1, 1941 – DeSoto introduces automatic hidden headlights

Since the inception of the automobile, engineers have been working to improve it, though they should have stopped after the Curved Dash. While some ideas floundered (automatic seat belts? Yuck), others we're right on point and set the bar for years to come. One such innovation appeared on this day in 1941 when DeSoto launched its 1942 lineup featuring hidden headlights. While Cord can lay claim to being the first American car to use such a feature when it unveiled the 810 in November 1935, they were a bit cranky to use, literally. Each Cord headlight opened via a separate hand-crank, one on each side of the dashboard. DeSoto's electrically operated pop-up headlights marked the first time an American automaker offered this automatic feature to the mass market. Named "Air Foil" lights, ...
Dusty & Rusty – 1934 DeSoto Airflow For Sale – $2,950
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Dusty & Rusty – 1934 DeSoto Airflow For Sale – $2,950

Some say the Chrysler and DeSoto Airflow, introduced in 1934, was ahead of its time, which is why sales sunk. Others blame production line faults for being unable to fulfill a large number of initial orders. Whatever the case, only 13,940 DeSoto Airflow models in four different series left the factory. This was about 9,000 less cars than what DeSoto made the previous year. Chrysler didn't fare much better, with 10,833 Airflows leaving the factory. Had Chrysler not retained its more traditional CA and CB models, 1934 sales would likely have been a third of 1933's. Point being, this 1934 DeSoto Airflow for sale on LA Craigslist is a rare car. Rare isn't always a good thing. Especially for a car that needs absolutely everything to get back on the road in any form. This aerodynamic ride is li...

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