1956 Dual-Ghia Convertible (Ghia)

Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Four passenger sports car
Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Four passenger sports car
Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Beauty in motion from hand formed steel
Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Beauty in motion from hand formed steel
Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Styling and body assembly by Italian craftsmen - Power plant and running gear of standard American components
Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Styling and body assembly by Italian craftsmen - Power plant and running gear of standard American components
Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Striking grill, a blend of massiveness and sculptured grace
Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Striking grill, a blend of massiveness and sculptured grace
Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Final assembly conditions matched to high quality
Dual-Ghia, 1957 - Final assembly conditions matched to high quality
Dual-Ghia, 1957
Dual-Ghia, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956 - Actress Debbie Reynolds
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956 - Actress Debbie Reynolds
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1956
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957 - Interior
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957 - Interior
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
Dual-Ghia Convertible, 1957
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The 1956-58 Dual Ghia: A Chrysler in Italian Clothing.
The idea of having Italian Craftsmen merge with Yankee engineering is really nothing new. Many of the American Automakers sought out Italian Design houses to produce stunning prototypes, and produce them at far lower costs than they could have been here in the states. While Nash utilized Pinninfarina to design their production vehicles, Chrysler commissioned Carrozzeria Ghia.

The Dual-Ghia was a favorite car of entertainment personalities during the 1950s. The A-list of owners included popular celebrities such as Debbie Reynolds, Lucille Ball, and Frank Sinatra. Each owned one of these cars at one time or another, and so did a few of the infamous Rat Pack. Peter Lawford even drove one on his television series, The Thin Man. The Dual-Ghia was a custom-built sports car featuring a perfect combination of Italian styling and Chrysler engineering.

In the early ’50s, American auto shows were deluged with sporty coupe and roadster concept cars. The Corvette was the first of these to go into production in 1953, and GM also created the Oldsmobile F-88 roadster and the Olds Rocket V-8-powered Cutlass. Pontiac featured its Bonneville Special, and Buick showed its Wildcat and Wildcat II. But it was Chrysler that displayed the Virgil Exner-designed, Ghia-built Firearrow. Most of these show cars were realistic interpretations of the automobile designer’s vision of a personal sporty car.

The Ghia-Chrsyler connection began in 1951 with Ghia’s execution of the K-310 show car designed by Virgil Exner. Chrysler continued to use Ghia’s craftsmen to create other show cars, including a series based on the Firearrow. These cars were so popular on the show circuit that Chrysler investigated the possibility of producing a Firearrow on a limited basis. However, Chrysler soon abandoned the idea, and that was when Detroit industrialist Gene Casaroll stepped in. Casaroll was the head of Auto Shippers Company and Dual Motors Corporation, an enterprise that built twin-engine vehicles for the military during the war.

Casaroll acquired the rights to the Firearrow. He instructed his chief engineer, Paul Farago, to make the necessary modifications to the design for the American market. Casarole renamed his new car The Firebomb, and in 1955, the first prototype Dual-Ghia was built. Production was scheduled to begin in 1956 (and unfortunately ended in 1958).

The Dual-Ghia concept used the rugged, dependable, and well-proven Dodge chassis, engines, and transmissions. This use of Chrysler engineered underpinnings allowed the car to be repaired locally with standard Mopar parts. The Ghia facility in Turin, Italy, headed by Luigi Segre, was chosen to craft the elegant bodies. Once complete, the bodies were shipped to Detroit and mated to the chassis. The Dual-Ghia used a shortened Dodge passenger car chassis. Dodge also provided the Hemi engine and Powerflite transmission. This made for an impressive package, especially since the optional Dodge D-500 Hemi’s horsepower ratings were consistently higher than those of the Corvette. Distinctive and quite fast, it had a top speed of 120 mph according to a contemporary road test.

The Dual-Ghia was a handsome car, with its peaked front fenders, single-bar grille, wire wheels and perky blade-like rear fins. The front and rear were protected by sturdy Dodge bumpers. Inside, the Dual-Ghia was luxuriously appointed, including English Connolly leather and fine carpeting. The full complement of gauges included a tachometer. The trunk was carpeted, as was the underside of the hood for sound insulation.

The first phase of the Dual-Ghia came to an end in 1958 when the company’s supply of Dodge components ran out. The conversion of Chrysler Corp’s cars to torsion bar front suspension for 1957, and its planned changeover to unitized bodies in 1960, meant massive changes by Dual-Motors if it were to continue the Dual-Ghia. The health of Casaroll, the Dual-Ghia’s originator, began to fail and he wanted to concentrate on his shipping business.

In the ’50s, it was rare to see a show car turned into a production vehicle. This stylish car, an unlikely marriage between Chrysler and Ghia, became an instant hit with the Hollywood Elite. The Dual-Ghia was the car to be seen in. One gossip columnist even commented that the Rolls Royce was for the Hollywood rich who couldn’t get a Dual-Ghia. Out of the 117 cars produced, 32 still existed as of July 2006. Some of the American celebrities that owned one included Sterling Hayden, and Richard Nixon. Desi Arnaz owned one, but he wrecked it. Ronald Reagan owned one, which he lost in a high-stakes poker game with then-President Lyndon Johnson, who kept the car for several years.


Во время послевоенного дизайнерского бума Вирджил Экснер, с 1949 года возглавлявший отдел стиля корпорации Chrysler, привлек итальянское ателье Ghia для постройки концепт-каров на шасси Dodge, в целях оживления стилистики своих автомобилей. В результате чего, с 1953 по 1954 год появились 4 дрим-кара Dodge Firearrow (I – IV), которые демонстрировались по всей Америке и будоражили сердца покупателей. Firearrow очень понравились предпринимателю Евгену Казароллу (Eugene Casaroll) и он договорился с Chrysler о производстве на основе концептов небольшой серии эксклюзивных автомобилей. Так родилась компания Dual-Ghia.

В 30-е годы Казаролл совершил революцию в перевозках автомобилей, начав вместо железной дороги использовать автовозы. Новенькие автомобили с заводов отправлялись прямиком в дилерские центры. После войны Казаролл уже был одним из основных подрядчиков Chrysler и благодаря партнерским отношениям ему позволили использовать не только дизайн концептов, но и техническую начинку современных автомобилей концерна Chrysler.

Казаролл не собирался конкурировать с «большой тройкой» американских автопроизводителей, он создавал автомобиль для артистической богемы Голливуда, которую уже невозможно было удивить дорогими местными или европейскими автомобилями. Для доработки дизайна и улучшения потребительских качеств автомобиля Казаролл привлек известного дизайнера Поля Фараго. Кузова, собранные на производственной площадке Ghia в Турине, доставляли в США, где их водружали на раму с силовым агрегатом Dodge. Кабриолет с двигателем V8 объемом 5.2 литра (230 л.с.) развивал 190 км/ч, разменивая первую сотню за 9 секунд. Целевой аудитории автомобиль пришелся по вкусу. Dual-Ghia Convertible владели Френк Синатра, Дин Мартин и другие звезды того времени. Рональд Рейган проиграл свой Dual-Ghia Линдону Джонсону в покер… Стоил кабриолет почти 8 тысяч долларов - практически как Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz.

Планировалось выпускать по 150 машин в год, но в связи со сложным и долгим производственным циклом реализовывать удавалось гораздо меньше. Маленький объем производства не мог обеспечить прибыль и проект был закрыт в 1958 году. Однако, неугомонный Казаролл предпринял вторую попытку выйти на рынок в 1961 году и предложил голливудской знати купе Dual-Ghia L 6.4. Под новым дизайном скрывался более мощный двигатель V8 от Chrysler, объемом 6.4 литра (355 л.с.). Теоретически автомобиль мог развивать скорость до 220 км/ч…
По материалам: www.carthrottle.com; sklyushnichenko.livejournal.com
Разработки студии Ghia
1933 Fiat 508S Balilla Spider (Ghia), 1947 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Sport Cabriolet (Ghia), 1948 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 Sport Cabriolet (Ghia), 1949 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 SS Coupe (Ghia), 1950 Alfa Romeo 6C 2500 SS Supergioiello (Ghia), 1950 Ferrari 195 Inter (Ghia), 1951 Chrysler K-310 (Ghia), 1951 Plymouth XX-500 (Ghia), 1951 Talbot-Lago T.26 Record Coupe (Ghia), 1952 Chrysler C-200 (Ghia), 1952 Chrysler Special (Ghia), 1953 Abarth Fiat 1100 (Ghia), 1953 Alfa Romeo 1900 Sprint Supergioiello (Ghia), 1953 Alfa Romeo 1900 Supersonic Conrero (Ghia), 1953 Cadillac Coupe (Ghia), 1953 Chrysler D’Elegance (Ghia), 1953 Chrysler GS-1 Special (Ghia), 1953 Chrysler Thomas Special (Ghia), 1953 Dodge Firearrow I (Ghia), 1953 Fiat 8V Boano Coupe (Ghia), 1953 Fiat 8V Supersonic Coupe (Ghia), 1954 Alfa Romeo 1900 CS Speciale (Ghia), 1954 Alfa Romeo 1900 SS (Ghia), 1954 Alfa Romeo 2000 Abarth (Ghia), 1954 Chrysler ST Special (Ghia), 1954 DeSoto Adventurer I (Ghia), 1954 Dodge Firearrow II (Ghia), 1954 Dodge Firearrow III (Ghia), 1954 Dodge Firebomb - Firearrow IV (Ghia), 1954 Jaguar XK120 Supersonic (Ghia), 1954 Plymouth Explorer Special (Ghia), 1954 Simca Convertible Special (Ghia), 1955 Alfa Romeo 1900 Supergioiello (Ghia), 1955 Chrysler Falcon (Ghia), 1955 Chrysler Flight Sweep I (Ghia), 1955 Chrysler Flight Sweep II (Ghia), 1955 Chrysler ST Special (Ghia), 1955 Chrysler ST Special Convertible (Ghia), 1955 DeSoto Adventurer II (Ghia), 1955 Ferrari 375 MM Coupe Speciale (Ghia), 1955 Ghia Gilda I, 1955 Lincoln Futura (Ghia), 1955 Volkswagen Karmann Ghia (Ghia), 1956 Aston Martin DB2/4 Mk II Supersonic (Ghia), 1956 Chrysler Dart (Ghia), 1956 Chrysler Norseman (Ghia), 1956 Chrysler Special K300 (Ghia), 1956 Dual-Ghia Convertible (Ghia), 1956 Ferrari 410 Superamerica (Ghia), 1956 Jaguar XK140 (Ghia), 1956 Mercedes-Benz 300 Berlina/Convertible (Ghia), 1956 Packard Predictor (Ghia), 1956 Plymouth Plainsman (Ghia), 1957 Chrysler 375 Coupe (Ghia), 1957 Chrysler Diablo (Ghia), 1957 Dual-Ghia Sport Coupe (Ghia), 1957 Fiat Jolly (Ghia), 1958 Dual-Ghia 400 (Ghia), 1958 Simca Special (Ghia), 1959 Ghia Selene, 1960 Chrysler Valiant (Ghia), 1960 Ghia Dragster IXG, 1960 Plymouth XNR (Ghia), 1961 Chrysler TurboFlite (Ghia), 1961 Dodge Flite-Wing (Ghia), 1961 Dual-Ghia L 6.4 (Ghia), 1961 Ghia Cart, 1961 Maserati 5000 GT (Ghia), 1961 Plymouth Asimmetrica (Ghia), 1961 Volvo P1800 (Ghia), 1962 Fiat 500 Ziba (Ghia), 1962 Ghia Selene II, 1962 Plymouth Valiant St. Regis (Ghia), 1963 Chrysler Turbine Car (Ghia), 1963 Ghia G230S, 1964 Chrysler V280 (Ghia), 1964 Ghia 1500 GT, 1964 Renault R8 Coupe (Ghia), 1965 Bugatti Type-101C (Ghia), 1965 DeTomaso Competizione 2000 (Ghia), 1965 DeTomaso Vallelunga (Ghia), 1966 DeTomaso Mangusta (Ghia), 1966 DeTomaso Mangusta Spyder (Ghia), 1966 DeTomaso Pampero (Ghia), 1966 Duesenberg Model D (Ghia), 1966 Fiat 850 Vanessa (Ghia), 1966 Ghia 450/SS, 1966 Isuzu 117 Sport (Ghia), 1966 Maserati Ghibli (Ghia), 1967 DeTomaso Rowan (Ghia), 1967 Iso S4 Fidia (Ghia), 1967 Oldsmobile Thor (Ghia), 1968 Ghia Serenissima, 1968 Maserati Ghibli Spider (Ghia), 1968 Maserati Simun (Ghia), 1969 DeTomaso Mustela (Ghia), 1969 Isuzu Bellett MX1600 (Ghia), 1969 Lancia Fulvia 1600 Competizione (Ghia), 1969 Lancia Marica (Ghia), 1970 DeTomaso Pantera (Ghia), 1970 Ghia City Car, 1971 DeTomaso 1600 Spider (Ghia), 1971 DeTomaso Deauville (Ghia), 1971 DeTomaso Zonda (Ghia), 1971 Ford GT-70 (Ghia), 1972 DeTomaso Longchamp (Ghia), 1973 DeTomaso Pantera II/Montella (Ghia), 1973 Ford Mustela II (Ghia), 1973 Lincoln Mark I (Ghia), 1974 Ford Coins (Ghia), 1975 Ford Flashback (Ghia), 1975 Ford Urban Car (Manx) (Ghia), 1976 Ford Corrida (Ghia), 1976 Ford Prima (Ghia), 1977 Ford Megastar (Ghia), 1978 Ford Fiesta Tuareg (Ghia), 1978 Ford Lucano (Ghia), 1978 Ford Megastar II (Ghia), 1978 Ford Microsport (Ghia), 1978 Ford Mustang III (Ghia), 1978 Ghia Action, 1978 Mercury XM (Ghia), 1979 Ford GTK (Ghia), 1979 Ford Navarre (Ghia), 1979 Ford Probe I (Ghia), 1980 Ford Granada Altair (Ghia), 1980 Ford Mustang RSX (Ghia), 1980 Ford Pockar (Ghia), 1981 AC ME3000 (Ghia), 1981 Ford Aerovan (Ghia), 1981 Ford Avant Garde (Ghia), 1981 Ford Cockpit (Ghia), 1981 Ford EXP-II (Ghia), 1981 Ford Shuttler (Ghia), 1981 Ford Super Gnat (Ghia), 1982 Ford Brezza (Ghia), 1982 Ford Quicksilver (Ghia), 1982 Ford Topaz (Ghia), 1982 Ghia Mini Max, 1983 Ford Barchetta (Ghia), 1983 Ford Trio (Ghia), 1984 Ford APV (Ghia), 1984 Ford Vignale Mustang (Ghia), 1984 Ford Vignale TSX-4 (Ghia), 1985 Ford Probe V (Ghia), 1985 Ford Urby (Ghia), 1986 Ford Vignale TSX-6 (Ghia), 1987 Ford HFX Aerostar (Ghia), 1987 Lincoln by Vignale (Ghia), 1989 Ford Saguaro (Ghia), 1989 Ford Via (Ghia), 1990 Ford Fiesta Bebop (Ghia), 1990 Ford Zag (Ghia), 1990 Ford Zig (Ghia), 1991 Ford Connecta (Ghia), 1992 Ford Focus (Ghia), 1993 Aston Martin Lagonda Vignale (Ghia), 1994 Ford Arioso (Ghia), 1996 Ford Alpe (Ghia), 1996 Ford Lynx (Ghia), 1996 Ford Saetta (Ghia), 1996 Ford Vivace (Ghia), 1996 Lincoln Sentinel (Ghia), 1998 Ford Touring Ka (Ghia), 2000 Ford Street Ka (Ghia), 2001 Ford Forty Nine (Ghia)
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