1951 Chevrolet Fleetline Deluxe

1951 Chevrolet Fleetline Deluxe 

Though the Chevrolet Fleetline Deluxe never quite caught on with the collecting public, it was still quite a snappy automobile. Debuted as the Aero-sedan right before American manufacturers got ready for war production in 1942, it was returned once again in 1948. One year later, Cadillac's fastback was deleted and the Aerosedan name was dropped completely and this left the Fleetline moniker behind.

The Fleetline two-door sedan had undergone minor, barely recognizable changes throughout the years by 1952, the Fleetline Deluxe was quite stunning. The four-door version of this model had been deleted completely as sales had dipped considerably as newer designs from Ford and Plymouth were introduced. All of that competition had taken its toll on the Chevrolet Fleetline lineup.

More than 189,500 Fleetline models were produced in 1950, the highest year of production. Two years later, Chevy could barely manage a fraction of that, at 37,164 units. A total of 851,137 Fleetline models were sold during the four years of Fleetline production from 1949 until 1952, only in two-door body style.

Two-door Fleetline models were the most expensive model at initial purchase, while four-door Fleetline's lacked available new or used exterior trim parts. The interior of the Fleetline was available in blue, gray or green two-tone with a dash painted to perfectly match the interior color. Under the hood, two engines were offered, the 216.5-cu. in or the 235-cu. in. 'Blue Flame' inline six-cylinder. On the Deluxe trim, a powerglide automatic transmission was available and mandated the selection of the 105hp 235. Powerglide-equipped vehicles were fitted with an automatic choke incidentally; meanwhile manual transmission vehicles had a manual choke. By 1952, these mechanicals seemed quite backward, but nevertheless, the engines still provided adequate performance for just daily driving.

Much like the other Chevrolet's produced in 1951, the Chevy Fleetline Deluxe featured a newly design grille with the lower two horizontal bars extended to form a circular frame for oblong parking lamps. Nestled besides the parking lamps were five vertical sectioned bars or teeth. The name 'Chevrolet' was written graciously in script on the upper chrome grille frame molding. All Deluxe models featured a stainless steel molding that began above the front wheel opening and extended onto the doors.

Standard equipment on all deluxe models was chrome rear gravel shields and painted fender skirts. Stainless windshield reveal moldings and rear window reveal moldings were returned once again on the '51 Chevy coupes and sedans. The moldings outline the windshield and rear window glass while another molding followed the top curve of the doors and quarter windows on all '51 Chevy deluxe sedans and coupes.

When Chevy advertised for the Fleetline Deluxe it used the phrase 'America's largest and finest low-priced car!' while another read 'More than an automatic transmission alone. It's the Power Glide Power Team!' This last quote was referring to the automatic transmission that had been introduced the '50 Chevrolet and the 105 hp Chevrolet valve-in-head engine. The combination of these gave the Deluxe 1951 Chevy more power than any other engine in the entire low-price field.

The four-door Fleetline Deluxe cost around $1,549 and only around 3,364 units were produced, putting it at a slightly lower percentage than two-door saloons wish produced around 6,441 units for the 1951 model year. Another name for the Fleetline was the Chevrolet Fastback.

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