The 1965 Plymouth Fury I and Fury II

Now let's consider the 1965 Plymouth Fury I and Fury II.

Somehow, Plymouth's Fury nameplate survived the chaos of the early Sixties. It had always graced Plymouth's top-of-the-line cars, the epitome of which was the Sport Fury. However, for 1965 the Fury would see its role expanded as it ousted the lower-priced Savoy and Belvedere full-size badges. The Savoy disappeared altogether, while the Belvedere name moved over to Plymouth's "new" intermediates, really 1964's "full-size" offerings wearing updated styling. The Fury nameplate was now reserved for full-size Plymouths exclusively.

1965 Plymouth Fury
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.
The 1965 Plymouth Fury was a full-size with crisp styling.

The new Furys, all with a healthy 119-inch wheelbase and an overall length measuring 209.4 inches (station wagon dimensions differed), came in four series: Fury I, Fury II, Fury III, and Sport Fury.

Elwood Engel, who had been primarily responsible for the design of the timelessly elegant 1961 Lincoln Continental, and who had also toned down the 1964 Imperial, did away with the styling excesses of the Exner era at Chrysler. The new Furys, also done under Engel's direction, couldn't be called earth shattering or revolutionary, but they did personify his theme of understated elegance. A formal roofline complemented fenders with a prominent horizontal motif, providing an air of sporting elegance. A convex rear panel darted out from the fenders, giving a hint of motion. Up front, vertically stacked quad headlights separated a fine mesh grille of the "electric razor" school of design. A vertical badge was poised in the center of the grille, and above that -- perched on the vast new hood -- stood an upright hood ornament that resembled a rocket positioned on its launch pad.

Interestingly, Ford's new 1965 models used similar, but even squarer, styling themes. Ford's design has sometimes been referred to as the "Rolls-Royce treatment," a term that well describes the formal lines of both the Ford and Plymouth. Chevy, meanwhile, went off in another direction, choosing instead a curvy Coke-bottle-shaped silhouette.

Fury I, the least expensive Fury, was hardly the stripped automobile one might have expected. Its standard powerplant, the 225-cubic-inch Slant Six with 145 horsepower (or an optional base V-8, a 318-cubic-inch unit with 230 horses), powered a lineup comprised of a two- and four-door sedan and a four-door six-passenger wagon. Standard equipment included left and right sun visors, cigarette lighter, color-keyed deep-pile carpeting, front and rear arm rests, rear-seat ashtray, electric windshield wipers, and front seat belts. Base price for the four-door sedan came in at $2,430.

The Fury I's basic body shell, chassis features, and design elements formed the base for the entire Fury fleet. A three-speed manual transmission came standard, with either a four-speed manual or three-speed TorqueFlite automatic optional. The suspension featured torsion bars up front, which gave Furys excellent handling and ride characteristics. The rear suspension utilized 2.5-inch-wide asymmetrical leaf springs. Chrysler's Oriflow shock absorbers were used all around.

Out back, a 16.8-cubic-foot trunk rode above a 26-gallon fuel tank. Inside, Fury appointments included vertical-style chrome door handles and a two-spoke steering wheel with an elegant rocket-like center medallion and half-circle horn ring.

The dash sported a large, vertical, squared-off speedometer positioned directly in front of the driver. All the gauges featured white numbers and lettering against a black background. The speedometer was flanked to the left by the gas, temperature, and alternator gauges, to the right by climate controls, radio, and clock -- if so equipped. The overall theme was horizontal, and quite attractive.

To these standard features Fury II, Fury III, and Sport Fury added their own special nuances and styles.

Fury II had very little to differentiate itself from the Fury I. It offered the same body styles, but added a nine-passenger station wagon to the line, as well as seats with foam cushions and slightly richer trimmings all around. From the outside, a full-length chrome strip set off the sides.

On the next page, find out how the 1965 Fury III was equipped.

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