Most car companies will put a little money aside each year to invest in the future, they give this cash to their designers and allow them to play with some of their most radical design ideas. The result of this investment are concept cars, futuristic theories of cars which, whilst they rarely go in to production, can be built and shown off to the World.
Throughout the years we have seen some of the most radical, exciting and attractive designs which have ranged from the mind blowingly futuristic, to the down right barmy. Let’s take a look then at just some of the best concept cars which have been put on display down the years.
When car manufacturers and designers starting learning more about aero dynamics, the race was on to create the best car which would cut through the air, reduce drag and increase speed. Ford’s offering was a car that almost looked like it was hovering over the road, a sleek and well thought out car where every detail of the four-seater was designed in an attempt to make it more aero-dynamic than a jet fighter. Even by today’s standards, the 1970 concept car had lower drag than any car produced since.
Ferrari 512 S Modulo
The 60s saw some of the quirkiest and strangest concept cars as designers let their imaginations run wild to create the kookiest auto that they could. By 1970, practicality was starting to combine with ingenuity for most car manufacturers… but not for Ferrari. The Italian giants created a car that was almost flat, impossible to drive and beautiful to look at. Aerodynamically perfect but completely un-usable, still, it would probably look nice on display outside your home.
Ever since James Bond headed underwater in his Lotus Esprit in the 1977 film ‘The Spy Who Loved Me,’ concept car designers have been seeking for ways to make their vehicles aquatic. Volkswagen have pumped money into this idea as the result of a 21-year old Chinese designer’s vision. Whilst the Volskwagen Aqua won’t be going underwater, the futuristic concept can head over it with hoverboard-like curtains. This 2020 concept has set the World of concept cars alight and we expect to see similar designs in the coming years.
Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it a …car? Well the General Motors Firebird was actually a bizarre combination of all three. This 1953 concept was conceived so that car makers could see if a gas turbine engine could fit on to a car and propel the auto to high speeds. We soon found out that this wasn’t the case but we are left with this fantastic piece of human engineering which is essentially a plane body on wheels which offered 370 bhp. Whilst this may never have hit the production line, the Thunderbirds-toy style car helped General Motors to gain great PR and shines a light on just how innocent we all were back in the 50s.