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The Chrysler Phantom Was the Phantom Before the Rolls-Royce Phantom

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author photo by Doug DeMuro November 2016

In the automotive world, the word "Phantom" conjures images of one vehicle and one vehicle alone: the Rolls-Royce Phantom, a gargantuan behemoth of an automobile with approximately the same size and shape as an elementary school.

But did you know there was a Chrysler Phantom, and it's kind of cool?

While the vehicle above might look to you like a Chrysler LeBaron, there's something about it you probably didn't realize: The LeBaron was sold in Mexico as the Chrysler Phantom. I can't possibly fathom why this occurred, except that maybe focus-group testing for the Mexican market showed that our friends to the south preferred the idea of a car with a ghostly name to the idea of one named after fake French aristocracy, even though it's built in St. Louis.

And so, while you may associate the Phantom name with Rolls-Royce, it was also used on a Chrysler.

Here's the other cool thing about the Chrysler Phantom: Although we primarily got the LeBaron with boring engines, the Mexican Chrysler Phantom had a high-performance version in the early 1990s. It used the same engine from the Dodge Spirit R/T, which meant that it had 224 horsepower and a 5-speed manual transmission. In a LeBaron! What a world that must've been, in 1990s Mexico... cruising with the top down, in your Phantom, rowing through the gears, doing 0 to 60 in 5-point-something seconds. Rapido!!!!

Doug DeMuro is an automotive journalist who has written for many online and magazine publications. He once owned a Nissan Cube and a Ferrari 360 Modena. At the same time.

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
The Chrysler Phantom Was the Phantom Before the Rolls-Royce Phantom - Autotrader