Just Add Hubcaps: 1938 Chrysler Royal


Chrysler built the Royal from 1937 to 1942. It was Chrysler’s entry level car. This one is listed here on eBay in Grand Ridge, Illinois. Bidding is over $4,000 but has not yet reached reserve and there’s a BIN of $9,500. It runs and drives, but needs brake and electrical work. It looks like it might be an older restoration. The seller claims these two door Royals are rare, but that seems unlikely. He claims only 3,800 2 door cars were built in 1938 and most were shipped over seas, yet they don’t provide a sound source. They claim a Hemming article is proof, but the story is actually only a reader submission to Hemmings about his Chrysler, not an article by Hemmings.


It looks very original inside, if a bit out of focus. There’s a door handle missing, and there are stains on the seats, but the interior looks pretty nice.


It’s looks all original under the hood except for the stray wires. The lights don’t work. Perhaps there was some botched attempt at rewiring.


This old Chrysler looks like it wouldn’t take much to make it a nice driver. There’s a badly rusted puzzling piece of trim down the middle of the hood that needs removing, but otherwise the outside looks OK. The $9,500 BIN may be more than this car is worth as it sits, but someone may be willing to pay that much. There’s a similar restored 4 door Royal listed on eBay that will probably sell for $10,000 that is much nicer. That’s the car I’d love to have with its suicide doors! Comparing the two, could you live with a couple more doors to get a much nicer car?


  1. Per Asberg

    Seems the productions numbers he claims are legit. See http://classiccardatabase.com/search.php?year=1938&make=Chrysler&series=4432

  2. grant

    I like it but I like it more for about $6500

  3. Jim Mc

    I’d still rather have the the one you featured last week, even with the extra (suicide) doors:
    That said, this one is a really nice car.
    In terms of styling? Back in the day, what a difference a year makes, eh? Both are handsome, but the ’39….wow.

  4. geomechs geomechs Member

    They definitely look better with hubcaps.

  5. bcavileer

    Chrysler Corp products really streamlined in’39. They lost the hump trunk and the pod headlights greatly helping the “modern as tommorow” look. DeLuxe’s are built in low numbers and are easily identified by full length belt mouldings. The Standards trim stopped at the front door in both 2 and 4 door bodies. Great riding cars albiet not very powerful. But who wants speed when you are ‘styling’ up to the country club.

  6. Pinesebrine

    Nice looking car. I can’t see this era of car being popular anymore. If you are an average guy in his 40s, looking to buy your first classic car chances are you will go with something from the 60s or 70s. These cars would suit someone with the space and an already started collection.


    This era of vehicles are just awesome! They look great stock and as a street rod! Talk about interior room, it just like a glove! Great family vehicles, cannot go wrong if the price is right!

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