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See Rare GM Concept Cars at the Audrain Automobile Museum

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California Automobile Museum - 1965 Corvair Stinger Replica
1965 Corvair Stinger Replica

Starting August 3, you’ll be able to see 12 of the most impressive General Motors concept cars at the Audrain Automobile Museum in Newport, Rhode Island. The exhibition, entitled “Styling the Future: A History of GM Design & Concept Cars,” is co-curated by Donald Osborn, a renowned automobile appraiser, historian, and writer.

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Never-before-seen models

The 12 cars featured in the exhibit have been loaned to the museum by the Lingenfelter Collection in Brighton, Michigan and the General Motors Heritage Center in Warren, Michigan. Many of the models on display have never been seen by the public, and never have so many GM concepts been shown together in a museum. While not every model made it to market, the technology and design cues found their way into classic GM vehicles. Other innovations were ahead of their time, like the Le Sabre’s rain-sensing convertible top and the turbine-engine-powered Firebird III.

The History of GM innovation

GM vehicles have always been high-quality and reliable, but their legacy of distinct, eye-catching design dates back to the 1920s. In 1927, GM put Harley Earl in charge of the company’s brand-new Art & Color division. It was the industry’s first in-house design department, and it proved to be a rousing success.

When the Buick Y-Job debuted in 1938, it was a landmark moment. It was the industry’s first concept car — a vehicle that wasn’t designed to be sold on dealership lots, but to inspire the public and draw attention to the automaker’s future innovations. Similarly, the Cadillac Le Mans and the Chevrolet Corvair were designed to be shown at the brand’s auto show, Motorama.

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Source: Marketwatch