Chrysler’s square-rigged little K cars, while an object of derision for some, are an endless font of fascination for me. I don’t know what it is about their Lincoln-that-shrunk-in-the-wash looks and pretentious crystal Pentastar mascot that makes me like them (yes, I know not all K cars are so fitted). I am out of the K car closet and I’m proud ! Furthermore, this book proves I’m not the only one.
The book does an excellent job of documenting trim, body color and powertrain options. The subtle year to year styling changes that took place over the production run of the LeBaron and Dodge 400/600 models are also well chronicled. Further assisting the K car fancier are VIN breakdown charts and a table of sample fault codes. Fascinating historical background such as facsimiles of letters from Lee Iacocca to the first purchasers of K Car convertibles, easing any anxieties about overlong delivery times, lend some perspective. Pictures of factory one offs like the Dodge 400 convertible fitted with a rumble seat and Mercedes like “Roadster SL” make enjoyable “what if” fodder.
It pains me to do so, but I must level some criticisms at this effort. The editing leaves something to be desired, I caught several typos and the author’s prose aren’t always entirely fluid. Further, the print quality is lackluster. But, I can’t judge too harshly because I’m sure this book was the author’s labor of love. It was printed by Lulu publishing who is a specialty firm that produces printed on demand, self published titles.
Is this book something that should be on your nightstand ? Unless you love K cars as much as I do, probably not. However, Mr. Narus is to be commended for condensing so much valuable information in one place for the benefit of those who own or would like to own an example of “The Car That Saved Chrysler”.