Car of the Week 1958 Plymouth Fury Old Cars Weekly

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Car of the Week: 1958 Plymouth Fury


admin | September 2, 2009

1958 marked the third model year for Plymouth’s top-of-the-line performance model, the Fury two-door hardtop. It was the first of the then traditional gold-trimmed Buckskin Beige speedsters to come out with the rest of the lineup at the start of the model year and the last to be a single model with its status unquestioned.

The 1956 Fury and the totally redesigned 1957 offering took giant steps in establishing the Plymouth name in performance circles. Even though the domestic manufacturers banded together in 1957 to cut back on racing and performance promotion, the ’58s were well along in the plans and too late to change.

As a result, Plymouth had several solid go-fast options for 1958.

Engine nomenclature gets a bit confusing, so here is an explanation. The 225-hp/318-cid Fury V-8 was not available on the Fury. Neither was the Fury V-8 with Super-Pak, which had a four-barrel carb and other modifications for a rating of 250 hp.

Next up was the Dual Fury V-8, which had a pair of four-barrels, 9.25:1 compression and a rating of 290 hp. This engine was standard on the Fury, as it was for 1957.

Optional on all models, Fury included, was Plymouth’s first crack at the new B-block, which came in at 350 cubes, two more than Chevrolet and two fewer than Ford big blocks for 1958. Two Carter four-barrels were on top, compression was 10:1 and the advertised horsepower rating was 305. This engine package was dubbed Golden Commando.

A very limited number of Furys were ordered with the Bendix electronic fuel-injection system, which raised the rating to 315 hp. Most were replaced with dual-carb setups when the injection proved troublesome.

Belvedere side trim included a single, full-length distinctive horizontal molding slanting from headlamp level towards the back fender. Ahead of the taillights, the molding angled up towards the top of the fin. When the optional “Sport Tone” finish was added, a lower molding was included that ran from above back bumper and tapered towards the upper molding at the front fender tip.

The area inside the moldings was then finished with contrasting colors, usually matching the roof.

The Fury was a limited-edition Buckskin beige two-door hardtop with Fury rear fender nameplates; Sport Tone moldings (with gold anodized aluminum inserts); bumper wing guards; padded interior; front and rear foam seats; back-up lights; dual outside rearview mirrors and special Dual Fury or Golden Commando V-8.

Motor Trend tested an automatic equipped Fury with the 305-hp Golden Commando and got a 7.7-second 0-to-60 mph run. This was far faster than the Ford 352-cid at 10.2 seconds and the Chevrolet Impala’s 348-cid run of 9.1.

With a $3,032 base price, the 1958 Fury was the most expensive Plymouth that year. Its production of 5,303 was down from the 7,438 for 1957, but up from the short 1956 run of 4,485. After 1958, the Fury name would be put on Plymouths of all types ranging from station wagons to police cars.

In 1982, … fiction author Stephen King wrote a novel called Christine” about a 1958 Plymouth Fury that terrorized its high school owner, introducing millions of … fans to the model. Apparently, production crews destroyed plenty of Savoy and Belvedere models dressed to look like the Fury, but no actual Furys were sacrificed.

PRODUCTION

Model # Body Type/Seating MSRP Weight Production

LP2-H 2-dr HT Cpe-6P $3,032 3,510 lbs. 5,303

Fury V-8: Overhead valve. Cast-iron block. Displacement: 317.6 cid. Bore and …: 3.906 x 3.312 inches. Compression ratio: 9.25:1. Brake hp: 290 at 5200 rpm. Five main bearings. Solid valve lifters. Carburetor: Two Carter Type WCFB four-barrel Model 2631S.

Optional Golden Commando V-8: Overhead valve. Cast iron block. Displacement: 350 cid. Bore and …: 4.062 x 3.375 inches. Compression ratio: 10.0:1. Brake hp: 305 at 5000 rpm. Five main bearings. Hydraulic valve lifters. Carburetor: two Carter four-barrel Model 2631S. (An electronic fuel injection option rated at 315 hp was short-lived.)

It s starring role in Christine helped to make the 1958 Plymouth Fury a cult favorite among car collectors. Its value remains high due to this celebrity tie-in demand and a low production number of just 5,303.

While these Fury hardtops were originally available only in Buckskin Beige set off by eye-catching gold-anodized aluminum Sportone inserts, even those that are incorrectly repainted in Christine red and white still command $75,000 to $85,000 in top condition and are usually marketed with all the movie memorabilia added in the deal.

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