AUTOS: The 1954 Cars

Behind carefully guarded doors this week, U.S. automakers are putting down the chips in a $350 million poker game. The stake: the cost of retooling for new models for 1954. The biggest bets are being placed on larger, more rakish-looking cars and more powerful engines. The use of power steering, power brakes and automatic transmissions has spread so fast that they will all be optional equipment on most lower-priced lines. Among the big changes for 1954:

GENERAL MOTORS, the industry's pace setter, is making the greatest changes, in January will bring out new...

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