Lets face facts..GM from the early 1950′s till the late 1960′s had the automotive world in the palm of their hands. With concept cars styled by GM’s God of style Harley Earl the Motorama shows of the 50′s showcased and wrote the book on future automotive design. The pictured automobile was one of the first of a long line of GM Motorama concept cars.First shown in 1951 this futuristic concept would give hints of GM’s design future. It was rumored that GM spent over $1,000,000 to build its aluminum bodied wonder on wheels. In todays money that would be “ten million” As with alot of Harley Earl’s designs this swoopy beauty was inspired by aircraft of the day. Earls vision was to evoke “flight in motion”.In keeping with its look into the future the car had some very exotic mechanical items.Most cars of the day had 6 volt electrical systems this car used 12 volts.The frame used rubber oil filled mounts to aid in a smooth ride. The hand built V8 engine was ”fuel injected” with an external oil cooler.All of this was mounted to a 3 speed automatic tranmission. Other features included body mounted hydraulic jacks that would raise the car to change a flat. A rain activated sensor would raise the convertible top so the cockpit inspired interior would not get wet. The large tail fins would inspire design throughout the 1950′s.This showcase of wonder would be Harley Earl’s personal ride for almost a decade. What Auto is This??
Tag Archive: GM
In 1964 GM and Chevrolet had the world as its kingdom. Long before OPEC and the early 1970′s Gas Crisis caused people to stop buying full size cars Chevy sold “One Million” Impala’s in 1964. Nobody made a better fullsize car for the price than Chevy. The Impala came in five different body styles. A four door sedan and hardtop, station wagon, convertible and the top selling two door hardtop. You could opt for many options and upgrades. For those looking to add some spice to their Impala you could get the “SS”. Engines choices ranged from the 265 horrsepower 283 “Small Block” v8 all the way up to the road burning 425 horsepower twin carbureted 409 V8. Perhaps the most popular upgrade was the 300 horsepower 327 small block V8. Transmission choices were a 3 speed manual, 4 speed or the outdated two speed powerglide. Options were plenty. You could fill your Impala with nice touches like power steering and brakes for easy handling. To make yourself more comfy A/C, power windows, seats and trunk were available. Starting at $2788.00 for a two door hardtop and weighing in at 3415 LBS your 1964 Impala was less than a dollar a pound. Chevy bragged that the Impala had “Jet Smooth” luxury. Riding on air was the Impala’s strong suit. maybe not the best thing for spirited handling but perfect for cruising while hold holding your favorite girl on the cushy bench seat. The Impala was about more value for you buck. In a comparision test Motor Trend Magazine gave it top honors over offerings from AMC, Ford and Chrysler. “Alot of car for not alot of money” Motor Trend proclaimed in its 1963 road test. Chevy would do a total re-style in 1965 and Impala sales would remain strong for years. When OPEC shut the pipe line down in 1973 large cars like the Impala became dinosours. GM would never recover and would lose market share to Japan and Europe year after year. The Impala was put to rest and re-born in a number of remakes. Todays Impala while a decent car is not very “Impala-like”. Bland and front wheel drive it will never recapture the glory days of 1964 when a million people the Impala a car and a legend. Chevy had some great TV commercials in 1964. Check out this vintage 1964 TV spot.
In an effort to make more “Portly” customers feel good about purchasing a Hybrid GM has decided to introduce models that appear “weight impaired” like their “chubby” owners. GM has not disclosed what the name will be but has axed names like “Blubber-mobile” and”Fat-a-sourus” People from deep inside GM has confirmed the new car will be named “The Rosie O’Donnell”
This Europeon large luxury sedan was produced by one of Germany’s oldest car makers between 1978-1993.The first series was produced between 1978-1982. Founded in 1862 this company started making motor vehicles in 1899. In 1929 this company would become owned by GM. In 1935 this company would be the first German automaker to produce over 100,000 vehicles per year. They still produce vehicles of all types till this day. This company has promised to invest over 1 billion euro’s in the next 5 years to develop fuel saving engines and small cars. The featured car was neither a fuel miser or small. Riding on stretched platform borrowed from its mid size sibling its porky size was a whopping 13 inches longer than any other car in its makers lineup. Only two body types were available. A oddly shaped three door hatch and a very German Accountant like 4 door sedan. For reasons only known to its maker it was available in other markets such as England and down under in Australia but under a different brand and name.Engines all were of “overhead camshaft”design and straight or in line six cylinder.The first 2.5 liter’s were fed thru dual Solex Carburetors later followed by reliable Bosch Fuel Injection. Engine sizes would increase to 2.8 and to the much improved 3.0 liter.Rated at 178 horsepower it could propel this German “mush-wagen” to 0-60 times in less than 8 seconds. Top speed was a very Autobahn cruising 134 mph. Transmissions ranged from a tractor like 4 speed manual to a slick Getrag 5 Speed manual.If you wanted to go “shiftless” you would get GM’s workhorse “Turbo 350″ 3 speed automatic. But this car mission was comfort.The maker would improve interiors and trim to the point of almost limo like comfort.Road and Track Magazine would joke in 1979 about its large rear seat “You could seat three corrupt East German diplomats in the back seat “What Auto is This??”
This car was only produced between 1923-1927. It was the mid price division of another car company.Its founder produced it as direct competition to Buick and Nash.Its flamboyant founder was known as the father GM and as a man who would win big and lose even bigger.As usual overspending and poor planning would lead to the demise of this quality make in 1927. Its parent company would bear the name of its owner. The origins of the cars engine can be traced back to Willys who was working on a prototype when money ran out..Being known for gobbling up strapped for cash situations its founder purchased the rights to the engine for a bargin price. Known as one on the inventors of part interchanging with other makes this car would share 80% of its parts with its sister make. Its robust six cyinder had 7 main bearings and full pressure oil system.This would be unusual for a mid price automobile in its day.Only three body type were available. A four door phaeton,a two door Town Sedan and four door Town Regal. Due to the cars odd pricing and slow sales it would be buried by 1927.Its parent make would suffer the ravages of the Great Depression and close its doors in 1931. Its “take a chance” founder would die almost broke in 1947 in Flint Michigan as a bowling alley manager. What Auto is This??
This make was founded in 1911. Its founder was a famous race car driver in his day. He gained fame driving Buicks for GM’s creator Billy Durant. This model was first introduced to the public in 1913. Its name came from its price at the time. $1000.00. But prices were soon lowered to compete with Ford’s Model T to $750.00
By 1916 This make made enough money for Durant to re-gain control of GM. This make would become part of GM in 1917. This model featured as standard equipment top and side curtains, electric horn, windshield, tools with jack and pump. Other nice touches were full electric lights and starter. Very “chic” for a low price car.
Power came from an valve in head 4 cylinder engine. The engine was fed with a Zenith double jet carb. The trans.was a three speed with a leather faced clutch. Much like its arch rival the Model T this model would survive till the 1920s with slight improvements. What Auto is This??