For 1951 the DeSoto range consisted of myriad body styles in the lower Custom trim level and the upper DeLuxe. It seems all were powered by the same 250 cubic inch flathead inline six-cylinder, which made a wheezy 116 horsepower, SAE Gross. This is not a powerhouse but you can bet that the cast iron lumpus will outlive everyone and everything you've ever known.
If sleepy, slow sleepers aren't quite your thing, and you want a fast sleeper, then this car would be the perfect donor for a Jonathan Ward ICON style rebirth. Pull the body off the frame, replace said frame with something built of TIGed tubes and an LS-whatever, with modern independent suspension and big brakes all around. Leave the paint exactly as it is, but recover the interior in burgundy alligator skin and make some sweet custom nickel plated badges. Then sell the whole shebang for six figures. Hey, it's a proven formula!
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CFlo is Daily Turismo's co-founder and Technical Editor. When he's not reading the news (HIS news) on the DT Radio Show, he's resuscitating a Volvo 240, turning a BMW E36 into a V8 powered Brougham LeMons racer, and restoring a Honda Motocompo. Daily drivers are a whole 'nother story.