Dodge Custom Royal Lancer Coupe 1959






scale 1:18

Model number: 5492


Review of the model:

Imagine we back in late 1958 and you shall have the task of buying a new car for your family. In those days it was hard to find a car, if you were an introvert and a silent man in your appearance. One thing for sure was, all cars at that period were a statement in steel and glass. They were a taste of the future, that all have the pedigree from the jet, atomic, and the space age. People were serious talking about the future of 1999, when we will have colonies on Mars!

Chrysler corp. had the “Forward looking” cars in their advertising statements. Oh yes the future was bright and promising.

There was a little batch of cars that stands out in the pack! They were the Dodge from 59!

The Dodge Custom Royal Lancer 500D Hardtop to be precise. A loooong name! for a beautiful, powerful, and well driven car. Not a cheap one, but on the other hand not a super expensive vehicle too. But again the man, who did not like attention, should stay away from this beast of a car. You will be noticed when you drive this car down the streets of any town.

Now we are back to the future! And Sun Star has released their latest molds, from the fifties of American Motor History, in scale 1:18. I must admit, when I first saw the pictures of this model I was hooked. This car design is so fantastic and way over the top, that it nearly want to be bought. A dealer in Germany was one of the first to announce the new model in Ruby red and Peal white. So the Item got in the basket as quickly as you can say Dodge!

The model is in Sun Star Platinum series so expatiations were high when the parcel arrived on my doorstep. The car was a real “head turner” in the fifties and even now as a model it can be a showpiece at any collection! This model car is low, wide, and heavy. The color combination is really highlighting the design and lines at this car. The Makers of this model have nailed it spot on, regarding the proportions of any parts and detail. The chrome work (And here are a lot) are perfectly made and are sparkling as the real thing. The paint and prep work on this model in a class for it self. Very well done Sun Star!

Look at the engine bay of this model, you will not be disappointed as all the hoses and wires are found here. If you look closely a small sticker is on the air filter too! And when we are opening the trunk the spare tire and jack lay on a soft carpet. Take a look on the underside of the trunk lid – Sound insulation is applied on this model too. When we take a look inside on this mighty spaceship, a contemporary interior in chrome and silver welcomes us. Sun star know how to impress us. The forwards seats are swivel type and the model let us turn the seats too. If you have a magnifying glass you should go on discovery on this model. You will find etched metal emblems and grill. The hub caps are art of their own. The lenses in the lamps are well casted with real “grid” for strength.

When you hold a piece of art in you hands, our fingers can find any kind of imperfections on it. Sometimes you don’t have to use your eyes, just let you fingers inspect the paintwork, and the fine details on the rim of the front and back windows etc.

I was unlucky as the rear wheels can’t turn – maybe the hubcaps had too much glue when they were assembled – a problem I have to look at later. The hood have fine hinges as the real car, Sun star had even applied coils springs on each side. But here the tension was so high, that the hood will not close right. A small pair of pincers released one of the springs – and problem solved! Sun Star had tried solved the same problem with oil!  - Not a right way to go as the model were “wet” and leaked when it was unpacked. I choose to hope it was a single mistake in this particular model and not a general issue to others too. And therefore it will not affect my generosity of stars to this model.

I will give this model 6 out of 6 stars  ******

Below here are pictures of the model, historical description, old brochures, technical data and a little movie clip for the real car. So please enjoy!





Newest of everything great from Sun Star



Look at those chrome eyebrows

  Ruby red and Pearl white  
Welcome to the spaceship of the future
Stylish interior
If you don't like fins this car is not for you
Those back lights is fantastic designed
Chrome chrome chrome
Wide low and long
The twin radio antennas on the rear fenders, is a feature that looks smart and fast
Sun Star's interiors when its at it best
Note the lancer on the forward fenders
Reflections from the sun
Big V8 6.3L 345 hp.
As the real car, the model have swivel seats
Note the fine emblem on the gas lid on the fin
Beautiful well made model
A car that looks fast from every angle
From a time when every part of a car was special
All that chrome and steel was not light weighted, but the powerful motor compensate for that
Roomy trunk with spare tire and tools
Quad carburetor with dual air filters



The 1959 Dodge Custom Royals were some of the wildest, most extreme vehicles built in the 1950s, or any other decade for that matter. Dodge was clearly looking to end the decade with a bang when it launched its 1959 models on Oct. 10, 1958. The big fins from 1957 and ’58 were back, although with slightly different profiles, and the eyebrows over the headlights were larger and more pronounced. Overall, the cars projected a longer, lower and wider look.

Dodge shed its stodgy image once and for all with the daring look of its 1959 offerings. That's because, in an attempt to appeal to a new generation of increasingly affluent buyers, Chrysler decided to pull out all the stops and load its brands with flashy, egocentric offerings. And subsequently, the curvy, jet-inspired creations Mopar enthusiasts had come to know and love began sprouting exclusive counterparts like this stylish Lancer D500 coupe. Wrapping a hot 383 cubic inch V8 and a stalwart Torqueflite pushbutton transmission in a tailored interior and a ton of stylish sheetmetal, this all-American cruiser HAS to be some of the coolest metal on the planet!  It’s likely some of the rarest Detroit iron ever produced. For fans of unique cars, it doesn't get much better than an Exner era Chrysler. And if you're a discerning collector who's itching for a classic, big-fin Mopar that'll be the star of every show it attends, this '59 Dodge is your ticket!

Offered in four body styles (four-door sedan and Lancer hardtop, two-door Lancer hardtop and convertible), each was constructed on a perimeter frame sporting five cross-members and boxed side rails--convertibles added an X-brace--with a 122-inch wheelbase. The "forward look" of the 217-inch-long body is best described as a symbol of motion; from the recessed quad lamps to the long, low and sleek swept-back fins, and even the exposed brake lamp lenses. In fact, the tail lamps were described as a safety element, visible in profile. Styling firsts included compound curved windshields.

Those seated inside a Custom Royal were immersed in opulence: full carpet floors, bench seats clad with cloth and vinyl bolsters. Among the options were swivel bucket seats, electric clock, radio, air conditioning and power seats. For color-blind drivers, the all-new tri-color speedometer proved to be somewhat troublesome. With no hand to follow, the gauge is divided into three segments and speed is indicated by color in each. Specifically, green is displayed to indicate speeds from 0 to 30 MPH, where it then changes to yellow until the vehicle hits 50 MPH, when the indicator changes to red.

Back in 1957, the Automobile Manufacturers' Association had pulled their support from motorsports. But that didn't mean performance had evaporated from under the hood with its withdrawal. It continued to escalate, thanks in part to public demand.

As an example, 1959's base engine in each Custom Royal was the "Ram Fire" (5.9 L)  V-8 topped by a four-barrel carburetor. With a 10:1 compression ratio, the engine packed a 305hp punch and 400-lbs.ft. of torque; that's 45 more horses than the base offering in 1957. If that wasn't enough power, the D-500 option would net a (6.3 L) engine, four-barrel carburetor, 320hp and 420-lbs.ft. of torque. Topping the list was the Super D-500: the same 383 block topped by dual quads that produced a factory rating of 345hp and 425-lbs.ft. of torque. The famed push-button TorqueFlite automatic backed each of these available engines; no manual transmission was available.

Supporting each Custom Royal was an independent torsion bar (Torsion-Aire) system under the front end. Aside from the torsion bars, "anti-dipping" upper and lower control arms and shock absorbers were key components. Also typical was the use of a semi-elliptical, five-leaf parallel leaf spring rear suspension system. Dodge did offer the one-year-only Level-Flite rear air suspension option, which was a pneumatic leveling device--better described as air bags as well as springs. Many were converted to a leaf-spring system.

In the end, Dodge built 21,206 Custom Royal models in 1959 (no wagons were offered in this series), 6,278 of which were Lancer two-door hardtops.

by Matthe Litwin and others


Technical specification:

  • Dodge Custom Royal Lancer D-500 V-8 2-Door TorqueFlite, model year 1959, version for North America U.S. (up to October)
  • 2-door coupe body type
  • RWD (rear-wheel drive), automatic 3-speed gearbox
  • petrol (gasoline) engine with displacement: 6277 cm3 / 383 cui, advertised power: 238.5 kW / 320 hp / 324 PS ( SAE gross ), torque: 570 Nm / 420 lb-ft
  • characteristic dimensions: outside length: 5522 mm / 217.4 in, wheelbase: 3099 mm / 122 in
  • reference weights: shipping weight 1746 kg / 3850 lbs estimated curb weight: 1830 kg / 4030 lbs
  • How fast is this car? top speed: 192 km/h (119 mph) (theoretical);
  • accelerations: 0- 60 mph 7.9 s; 0- 100 km/h 8.4 s  1/4 mile drag time (402 m) 15.9 s
  • fuel consumption and mileage: average estimated by a-c: 22.5 l/100km / 12.5 mpg (imp.) / 10.4 mpg (U.S.) / 4.4 km/l




Old brochures of the Dodge 1959
































Video of the real car from Youtube

  1959 Dodge - original commercial  


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Aeronautic Sep. 2017 Rev. July 2018


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