A couple of spreads from one of my 1965 Dodge brochures, featuring the Custom 880 6-window sedan at the top, and the brand-new "personal luxury" coupe, the Monaco: "For the man with unlimited taste" on the bottom. Umm, something tells me no Dodge dealer turned away women that were willing to sign on the dotted line! Click image to enlarge to a full 1500 pixels in width.
M Y C O L L E C T I O N — 1965 was a major transitional year for Chrysler and its Plymouth and Dodge divisions. This was the first year that Elwood Engel's "clean sheet" designs would be seen, the C-body full-sized cars. Engel's full-square, body pushed all-the-way-to-the-corners design ethic is clearly in evidence, in stark contrast with the former VP of design Virgil Exner's more flamboyant and exhuberant style.
Featured above is a sedan in what would be the Custom 880's last year. The Custom 880 shown in the catalog was the beautiful six-window sedan, a body style shared only with Chrysler for 1965, and the only year Dodge would utilize it. For '66 only the four-window sedan would be marketed by Dodge. Also pictured is the Monaco coupe in its first year on the market. Dodge was ever jealous of Pontiac's perennial sales lead over Dodge, and tended to come up with competitors for Pontiac on a model-for-model basis. The Grand Prix's rising star, and sales, didn't go unnoticed at Dodge, and for 1965 they came up with the specialty Monaco. It was only available in this svelte coupe, with a special 4-place interior, complete with Rattan trim on the dashboard, door panels and the backs of the front bucket seats.
For '66, Dodge would "water down" the Monaco nameplate, replacing the four-year old Custom 880 with sedans, coupes, and wagons, and the specialty Monaco coupe would become the Monaco 500.