1952 Sears Allstate. (source: Jim Brown)
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The Allstate was an American automobile offered for sale through the Allstate auto accessory chain of Sears, Roebuck during the 1952 and 1953 model years. The Allstate was basically a Henry J with a different grille, and other trim changes.
The Allstate was built by Kaiser-Frazer (Kaiser-Willys from 1953), in Willow Run, Michigan, (Toledo, Ohio from 1953) and was based on Kaiser's compact Henry J. One body style was offered, a fastback two-door sedan in two lines, the Series 4 and the Series 6.
For 1952, the Series 4 came in the Model 111 Standard (the best seller at $1,486) and Model 113 DeLuxe ($1,539) trim versions, and was also available in an austere Model 110 Basic version for $1,395. The Series 6 Basic was priced at $1,594 and the well-trimmed, swift Model 115 DeLuxe was offered at $1,693. (The Standard was never offered in the Series 6.)
Virtually no appearance changes were made for 1953 but Allstate cars weighed as much as 145 pounds more than their 1952 counterparts. All the Allstate Basic models were dropped and Allstate prices jumped substantially; the entry-level Series 4 Standard Model 210 sold for $1,528 and the DeLuxe Model 213 for $1,589. The Series 6 was now only offered in the upscale DeLuxe Model 215 version at $1,785, and was the most popular Allstate that year.
The Allstate was the brainchild of Henry J. Kaiser, who saw Sears as another means to mass-market his slow-selling "Henry J" two-door sedan, introduced in 1950.
Sears had tried selling cars under the name "Sears Motor Buggy" previously between, 1908 and 1912, with some degree of success. These horseless carriages were of the "high-wheeler" variety, looking very much like horse-drawn buggies, complete with large, wagon-type wheels. This type of passenger vehicle was quite popular in rural areas in the early part of the twentieth century, as their high ground clearance was well-suited to the muddy, wagon-rutted country roads of the time. In addition, rural folks were accustomed to mail-ordering through the Sears catalog, and the Sears Motor Buggy could be delivered to the nearest railroad siding, an important convenience in those days. Like virtually all Sears merchandise, these autos were manufactured by other companies and merely retailed by Sears.
Originally, Allstate automobiles were planned to be built on the senior Kaiser platforms, but following three years of negotiations between Kaiser-Frazer and Sears, Roebuck, the production Allstate was announced on November 20th, 1951 by Sears merchandising vice president Theodore V. Houser and Kaiser-Frazer administrative vice-president Eugene Trefethen. The three-year delay was due in part to tension from existing Kaiser-Frazer dealerships fearing competition with the Sears organization.
(text source: Wikipedia)
2,363 cars were sold.
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