Canadian 1969 Dodge Monaco: Top Dog Dodge

ED: Another one from ‘The Vault.’ Thought it was appropriate since we were just discussing silver interiors recently!

I love Fuselage Mopars. As the 1969-73 full-size Mopars, from basic Plymouth to top-drawer Imperial, are affectionately known by collectors. And while there are highs and lows in Fuselage-land (of course I love the more luxy versions: Imperials and New Yorkers) I can find some appreciation for all of these land yachts. I especially liked this black over silver 1969 Monaco when it appeared on eBay back in 2014 or so.

The über-swoopy 1969 full-size Chrysler Corporation products were quite a departure from the more squared-off yet equally attractive 1965-68 models.

Now those are some serious quarter panels!

While you can see some of the 1965-68 GM full-size line in the Fuselages, I am of the opinion that they have a look all their own. Particularly on the two-door hardtops, four-door hardtops, and convertibles.

The top-drawer model over at the Dodge Boys’ home base was the Monaco–itself introduced in 1965 as a top-of-the-line hardtop coupe, meant to compete with other specialty coupes such as the Pontiac Grand Prix. But by 1969, a full-range of Monacos was available–even an attractive Di-Noc clad wagon. But the real looker was still the coupe.

One interesting fact about the 1969 Fuselage cars: About halfway into the model year, dealers apparently wanted some more chrome, so chrome caps were added above the bumper–a preview of the “loop” bumpers that would be ushered in for the 1970 model year, perhaps? Apparently it placated dealers, but the overall effect seems more J.C. Whitney-ish to me. Regardless, the tacked-on chrome still can’t change my love for this fine example. But wait! What’s that round thing in the grille?!

That, my friends, is the “Super Lite.” Mounted on the driver’s side of the grille, the quartz-iodide lamp provided near the same illumination as the high beams, but without blinding oncoming traffic. Co-developed between Sylvania and Chrysler Corporation, it was not an especially popular option. It remained available for model-year 1970, then quietly disappeared.

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And while the exteriors of the Fuselage Dodges was remarkably attractive, the interiors were pretty appealing in their own right. I love the late ’60s/early ’70s Mopar instrument panels! So well-organized, yet still good-looking. I love all the rocker switches, with the name for each switch printed on the woodgrain trim panel. Also, please note the alternator and temperature gauges–a Mopar “Unique Selling Point” in an era when many GM and Ford competitors typically had only a speedometer and a gas gauge.

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If the interior trim seems a little bit plain for a top of the line car, that’s because, as a Canadian-market Monaco, its interior was borrowed from the Plymouth Fury III.
The US-market Monaco seating was much more in keeping with the most expensive full-size Dodges.

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And just look at that dash pad! Mint–just like the rest of this extremely well-preserved coupe.

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Considering the Monaco was the top of the line Dodge, that door panel looks a little plain–no carpet on the lower edge, and no full-length armrest? It does have power windows though.

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Once common, now vitrually extinct on new cars (I think pickup trucks are it in 2020): The humble bench seat. I love bench seats for their stretch-out room. I can occasionally be found driving my Town Car with my right arm draped over the leather bench, driving with just my left hand. Like driving your living room around.

The delta-shaped taillights were a Dodge feature for several years, starting with the 1965 full-sizers. Though increasingly less obvious over the years and restylings, they remained an identifying characteristic through 1971. In 1972, a full-width checkerboard taillight replaced it.

1970 Dodge Monaco-04-05

I prefer the ’69 Monaco to the ’70. The 1970, while still sharp, is just slightly less attractive than the ’69 in my opinion. Ironically, I prefer the loop-bumper 1970 Plymouths to the rather plain 1969 Furys I, II and III.

Though I will make an exception for the ’69 Sport Fury and VIP versions. My friend Glenn Bliznick’s triple black ’69 VIP four-door hardtop is a sight to behold!

So, what did that Monaco go for? I don’t know. I regularly sneak through eBay Motors, looking for cool stuff, but I usually save the pictures of the more compelling rolling stock and never follow up with what they sold for–if they sold at all. At any rate, I hope whoever won this beautiful Monaco appreciates her.

11 Replies to “Canadian 1969 Dodge Monaco: Top Dog Dodge”

  1. AvatarJohn C.

    Interesting that even a top Monaco was detrimed for Canada. Back when even so many of the well off were still true to their thrifty Scottish heritage. I am sure it is no trouble getting a blinged out car in Canada now, with so many of the well off true to their spend it while you got it before you get found out Chinese heritage.

    Reply
  2. Tom KlockauTom Klockau Post author

    Well, Canadians were by and large thriftier. A lot of the Pontiac Laurentians, Parisiennes etc. had Chevy-based interiors and engines in the ’60s too.

    Reply
    • Avatarstingray65

      Rather than thrifty, I think the better word to describe Canadians of that time was poorer. Canadian salaries were generally lower than the States, and Canadian taxes (including taxes on new cars and gasoline) were generally much higher than in the States, so put it all together the average Canadian just didn’t have the cash to buy a fancy big car.

      Reply
      • AvatarJohn C.

        There have always been rich people despite what it says in your trickle down pornography posing as textbooks. Even Ronald Reagan had to take David Stockman to the woodshed for not living in the real world. Revenue doesn’t really go up when rates are reduced just like cutting cap gains rates doesn’t make the stock market go up. Wealth doesn’t trickle down but is instead syphoned off by such moves.

        Reply
        • Avatarstingray65

          I didn’t say there weren’t rich people in Canada, but I imagine most of them would rather buy a Cadillac or Mercedes or Ferrari than a Dodge with all the bells and whistles that middle-class Americans can afford, but not so many middle class Canadians. You might also look at actual tax receipts, because revenues do go up consistently when capital gains rates are cut. Receipts also went up when Trump cut corporate tax rates in 2018, and they went up when Reagan cut personal income tax rates in the 1980s. Deficits are always a spending problem, not a revenue problem.

          Reply
  3. AvatarArk-med

    I wonder whether the the “Super Lite” could be reintroduced in the inside-headlamp housing of the Challenger’s Hellcat variants’ passenger-side (the side that hasn’t had its headlamp hollowed out for the air-intake)?

    Reply
  4. AvatarTony LaHood

    Tom, I’ve never liked the fuselage cars overall, but I have to admit that coupe is a looker! I think Dodge did the fuselage-era cars better than its sister divisions.

    BTW, the Super Lite option would cost about $350 in today’s money; I can see why there was such a low take rate for an option whose value most people likely didn’t understand.

    Reply
  5. AvatarGeorge Denzinger

    One of the other Austrian families in the neighborhood had a whole string of big Dodges. They even had a 1969 Monaco four door with the Super Lite, but more importantly a 383! Their sons were the same age as me and my two older brothers, and every so often the ‘rents would have the older kids take us younger kids to the ice cream stand to get us out of their hair. Helmut, the one older brother in the other family, had no issues punching the accelerator on that Mopar. That big old girl would just pull up her petticoats and run down the road like a crazed Olympic track runner…

    Now that I think about this, I’m amazed that we ever survived the 1970’s!

    Reply
    • Avatarstingray65

      and of course you were all properly buckled up, and the already marginal bias ply tires and drum brakes were in tip-top condition.

      Reply

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