The 1953 Dodge Coronet Eight Convertible was the collectible soft-top model in the series that ushered in Dodge's first V-8. The famous Red Ram
was essentially a scaled-down version of the Chrysler Hemi, with smooth manifolding and porting, jumbo valves set well apart, excellent thermal
efficiency, and considerable high-performance potential.
The 1953 Dodge line was restyled by Virgil Exner (who had come to Chrysler from Studebaker in 1949), and looked lighter and less stodgy than
earlier models. The V-8 cars performed well, yet offered good economy. One returned 23.4 mpg in the 1953 Mobilgas Economy Run, while other Red
Rams were in the process of breaking 196 North American stock car speed records at Bonneville.
Convertibles, like the 1965 Dodge Coronet 500 Convertible, came in a wide selection of flavors back in the Sixties. One brand alone comprised
the compact Dart 270 and fancier Dart GT, mid-size Coronet 440 and Coronet 500, plus the full-size Polara and Custom 880. Yes, Dodge offered
no less than six different soft tops in its 1965 lineup.