The Dodge Firearrow was an American-Italian collaboration. Coachbuilders Carrozzeria Ghia – based in Turin – finessed the fine details. Their craftsmanship was second to none. Resplendent in red – and sporting a polished metal belt-line – the Firearrow was an elegant, well-proportioned automobile.
Ghia liaised with Virgil Exner. He was chief stylist for the Firearrow. Exner – and his colleagues in the Chrysler art department – came up with a clean and tidy design. Restrained and tastefully-placed lines were the backdrop for a plethora of neat features. The way the bodywork overhung the wheels was a sweet touch. Inside, the wooden steering wheel bespoke class. Twin seats were sumptuously upholstered.
The Dodge’s engine was an all-American V8. 152bhp shot the Firearrow III coupé up to 143mph. The Firearrow timeline was a long one. It started out as a show car mock-up. A working prototype duly followed. Decked out in yellow – and with wire wheels – it featured in ’54’s Harmony on Wheels extravaganza. After that – along with the coupé – came the Firearrow and Firebomb convertibles. The idea was just to whack a bit of wow factor back into the jaded Dodge brand. But – so big a hit were they with the public – that a limited production run was soon mooted. It was privately funded – by Detroit’s Dual Motors. 117 Firebomb replicas were built. They went under the name of the Dual-Ghia. Virgil Exner – and his feverish work ethic – had delivered on two fronts. Dodge received its much-needed facelift. And the Firearrow lit up the landscape, in its own right!