The 2015 Canadian International Auto Show (CIAS) was held in Toronto this past February, and one of the highlights was the 1963 Chrysler Turbine Car.
As part of a 19-vehicle Art and the Automobile exhibit, the 1963 Chrysler Turbine Car in “Turbine Bronze” made its presence felt. Shipped from the historical collection of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) US LLC in Auburn Hills, Michigan, the Turbine Car is among the most famous vehicle in the Chrysler archive and one of three prototypes in their collection.
CIAS General Manager, Jason Campbell, said, "The exhibit traces the artistic progression of vehicle design through the decades and the Chrysler Turbine Car is a great example of the transition period from the chrome-plated, aircraft- and rocket-influenced designs of the '50s to the more pure forms of the '60s, as it includes elements of both. Besides which, it is a very pretty and historically important car."
The Turbine Car was powered by a turbine engine that ran on diesel, kerosene or JP-4 jet fuel. There were a total of 50 production turbine cars built from 1963 to 1964, all with signature bodywork done by Carrozzeria Ghia––which is why they’re sometimes referred to as “Ghia bodied”––and while they were driven with positive feedback by around 200 members of the public for three-month trials, they were never put into mass production due to their cost compared to vehicles with regular combustion engines. After the evaluation period was over only nine survived, and three of those were kept by Chrysler. The others are housed in various institutions, including the Museum of Transportation in St. Louis, the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C., and the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles. Jay Leno also has one, as part of his famous collection.
“The Chrysler Turbine program began in 1954 – in the supersonic jet airplane age – and lasted until 1981,” said Brandt Rosenbusch, manager of historical vehicles for FCA US LLC. “Like today, the company was exploring alternative propulsion solutions, and to prove the engine’s flexibility, even ran them on perfume and alcohol – aside from the ‘standard’ JP-4 jet fuel.”
The Chrysler Turbine and the 2015 Canadian International Auto Show made the perfect couple. To keep up with all things Chrysler, including vehicle news and other happenings, and to find links to all the Chrysler social media channels, visit the Chrysler Social page of the This is Chrysler website––www.chrysler.com/en/this-is-chrysler/social/––and be sure to stop in and check out all the great new Chrysler vehicles.
This article is presented by Perkins Motors in Colorado Springs, Colorado.