Prepare to be amazed by the sheer rarity of the 1952 Kaiser Manhattan 2-Door sedan. With only 1,315 ever produced, this vintage gem stands as a testament to automotive history. The Kaiser-Frazer Corp., born from a merger of two independent brands in 1947, crafted the Manhattan as their top-of-the-line car until 1951. Continuing under the Kaiser name for two more years, this ’52 Manhattan is a true survivor located in St. Paul, Minnesota. Thanks to our Barn Finder T.J., we’ve stumbled upon this incredible find listed on craigslist for $6,500.
In the post-World War II era, independent automakers struggled while the industry giants flourished. The 1952 Manhattan, equipped with luxurious features, saw a production total of only 17,417 units. Although demand increased slightly in 1953 with 29,945 produced, it was still a modest number compared to the sales figures of the “big boys” like GM, Ford, and Chrysler. This rarity adds to the allure of the Manhattan, capturing the attention of collectors and enthusiasts alike.
The distinctive styling of these early 1950s Manhattans is instantly recognizable, featuring unique “dips” in the sidelines and rear window. Powering this classic is a 226 cubic-inch “Supersonic Six” engine, delivering a respectable 115 horsepower. While a 3-speed manual transmission was standard, the majority of ’52 Manhattans were equipped with the optional 4-speed Hydra-Matic, sourced from General Motors. Remarkably, despite its time spent in storage, this vehicle reportedly runs and shifts smoothly, benefiting from new parts such as the gas tank and master brake cylinder.
While the available photos leave some details to the imagination, the two-tone paint appears to be in good condition, complementing the car’s vintage appeal. The seller describes the Manhattan as a “solid car with minor rust,” although specific problem areas remain undisclosed. The interior, unfortunately, lacks detailed images, leaving potential buyers curious about its condition. Notably, the unique positioning of the door posts, situated almost in the middle of the interior, may present a challenge for accessing the back seat. With just 63,000 miles on the odometer, this rare find holds great promise for collectors seeking a solid addition to their automotive treasure trove.