1951 Plymouth Cranbrook 218 from North America


Solid, high quality, easily repairable car



Speedometer cable.

Starter dragged.

Charging System was Questionable.

Carb needed a rebuild.

General Comments:

I bought the car for 500 bucks. It was in alright shape, but it needed brakes (very typical for an old car). I got it running after tearing apart the starter and cleaning it up. The starter kept kicking out before the car would start.

When I got the car to run it ran pretty good. It had plenty of pickup for an old beater, and I'd say it averaged right around 20-21 mpg.

The speedometer did go out on me after a few hundred miles. I disconnected the cable because the speedo was making so much noise.

The charging system was iffy, I kept adjusting and filing the points in the voltage regulator. It kept working, although I don't think it ever charged right.

The best part is most of the problems were fixable without spending money. Unlike a modern car, parts are made to be repaired or rebuilt. I wound up selling it, and doubled my money.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st July, 2011

1953 Plymouth Cranbrook 4-Door Sedan 218 CID L-Head 6 cylinder from North America


Good car for the price and got a good deal on trade-in


Replaced muffler, battery and tires.

General Comments:

The 1953 Plymouth Cranbrook 4-Door sedan was my first car.

I purchased it (used) for $895 from Lone

Star Olds-Cadillac in Dallas, Texas.

Color was Monterrey (light) Green.

Car was equipped with radio, heater, standard transmission with overdrive, white sidewall tires and full wheel covers.

I drove this car to college to finish up a term in a course I had started, and which was interrupted by service in the U.S. Navy during the Korean Conflict.

It was a very comfortable and fairly roomy car.

My gas mileage averaged from about 28 to 30 miles per gallon on highway cruising.

I traveled from Dallas to Poughkeepsie, New York, and while there for a brief time, traded it on a 1956 Plymouth Savoy 2-Door Club Sedan with similar equipment from the Arthur L. Fried, Jr. Chrysler-Plymouth dealer in Poughkeepsie.

The total price on the 1956 Plymouth was $2583.30 with a trade-in allowance for the 1953 Plymouth of $1189.00 for a difference of $1394.30. Of course, this was in the days before "sticker prices", "dealer invoices", etc. and the price on the new car might have been inflated to make the trade-in look better.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 21st January, 2007

1953 Plymouth Cranbrook Base 218 6 cylinder flathead from North America


A good old car


Coil, brake pressure switch, points.

General Comments:

For a car that is over a half century old, I would say it rides and drives pretty well.

Plenty of room.

Gas mileage has been pretty decent. I got 30 mpg in the summer.

The engine runs very smooth and has sufficient power for modern day driving, although you aren't gonna win any stoplight drags.

I have been very surprised and pleased with the parts availability. All the mechanical parts are avalible through just about any auto parts store and the prices are very reasonable. Also the car is very easy to work on. Any one can work on this thing.

One thing that went out was the coil, so I changed it to 12 volt. I would not have done it had I known how much of a problem it would be. The 12 volt current burned up some wiring, and the brake switch started on fire one day when I was going to work and burnt up the plastic portion of it, leaving me with no brakes!

I would recommend this car to anyone who wants to get into the old car hobby with a budget. Plymouth Cranbrooks seem to be pretty cheap on the old car market. I picked up mine for 500 bucks and it ran and drove.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th December, 2005

20th Feb 2006, 17:48

I love old cars, and fully support your enjoyment of driving this. Although I love Dodge/Chrysler/Plymouth, I have to admit I've never heard of the Cranbrook (my favorites are the 1960s and 1970s). I am pretty surprised--okay, let's just say skeptical--of your reported 30 mpg out of this 258 straight six. I had a 1950 Chevy DeLuxe with a straight six, three speed manual, essentially a contemporary of your car. I had that thing running smooth as silk, but no way was it ever close to 30 mpg. Do you have an extreme high-ratio gearing in the differential or something? Even under the most ideal conditions, such as rolling downhill I-80 West from Truckee to Sacramento, I would still have to see it to believe it.