GM Showcases Corvair Based Concept

by : Mike Bartley

In connection with the ongoing Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance, General Motors joined BMW in showcasing some of their renowned vehicles that have left indelible marks in the automobile history. GM took four Corvair-based concept cars to the said event. Such as been done for the company aims to show performance enthusiasts gathered at the event to have a look at what they have achieved in the past and what they can expect from General Motors in the future.

The Corvair was introduced by Chevrolet in 1960 and the appearance of the vehicle is an innovation during that time since the design of the car is very much different than its competition. The Corvair has been one of GM's treasured models and this is very much evident in the fact that the four vehicles were displayed at the GM Heritage Collection after they were shown at Amelia Island in Florida.

The Corvair, in its inception in the market, featured a rear mounted, all aluminum, air cooled, horizontally opposed six cylinder engine. The overall design of the car gives it a low profile which increases its stability especially on turning corners at high speed. It also features a flat passenger compartment floor. The Corvair is equipped with a 4-wheel independent suspension system - the feature gives the car a comfortable ride quality, a responsive steering, and a good braking balance.

All of the previously mentioned features are important in a high performance car, and GM has successfully integrated the systems into the car to make it one of the best cars in its class during its time.

From that ground-breaking platform, designers and engineers from GM has created four concept cars which have captured the attention of performance car enthusiasts in the past and will definitely attract the attention of performance enthusiasts today.

The four Corvair-based concept cars shown at the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance are the 1962 Corvair Super Spyder, the 1962-63 Corvair Monza GT and SS Concept, and the 1967 Corvair Astro I. All of these concept cars are based on the Corvair platform and is being showcased in Amelia Island.

The Corvair Super Spyder is the first concept car to be based on the production Corvair. The Super Spyder is built around a shortened Corvair platform. Just like the Corvair, it has a high aesthetic value - thanks to its 2 seat configuration, metal tonneau cover, headrest, and three chrome exhaust pipes. The Super Spyder during its time is one of the best looking cars and it does not matter whether you are going to compare it among concept cars or against production cars. And of course, to match its good looks, GM saw it fit that a high performance engine be fitted into the concept car. In the end, the Super Spyder was equipped with a supercharged engine.

While the Super Spyder was the first concept car to be based on the Corvair, the Astro I is the fourth, and the last one to date. The Astro was designed to have a low coefficient of drag. The result of the lowering of drag on the vehicle is a small front area, low roofline, and an elevated back.

Of the four, the centerpieces of GM's show at the event are the Corvair Monza concept cars. The Monza comes in two versions, a grand touring version and an open-top version. Except for the open top configuration of the SS, both the GT and SS looks similar. While they look similar, they have significant differences. The Monza GT coupe was designed to be a true mid-engine car. From the standard Corvair, designers turned the engine a hundred and eighty degrees to put it ahead of the transaxle. On the SS, the engine was left on its original place which makes the shorter of the "twins".

All of the four Corvair-based concept cars are designed to look god that a car enthusiast would not appreciate its beauty only they are covered by a .