ocnblu

Reversing quantum's idea

11 posts in this topic

In the late 50's and even earlier, the Big 3 were feeling a bit of pressure from imported manufacturers which had become successful selling small cars in the USA, especially Volkswagen's Beetle and Microbus, and to a lesser extent, Renault with the Dauphine. The German and French cars had aircooled rear engined platforms.

GM responded in 1960 with the delightfully innovative, jaunty little Corvair.

WHAT IF...

The Corvair were introduced today with the same purpose and same chassis layout... a four or five seater coupe, convertible, sedan, wagon, pickup and van with four wheel independent suspension, and a rear-mounted, aluminum, air cooled flat-six cylinder engine? Can you imagine what a knockout the car would be with today's technology backing it up?
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Dude- there was zero "pressure" from imports crica 1960. The Beetle sold some, sure, but nothing else did in any kind of quantity.

In fact, one of the best selling imports then was from.... General Motors: Opel sold nearly 1 million units thru Buick dealers in (less than) it's first 2 years ('59-60).

EDIT: Sorry- didn't mean to ignore your point.
Let's disect: I would have to imagine that the main difference of a modern Corvair (other than the full line-up as you detailed) would be it's rear engine. I'm not convinced that would be a marketing advantage: there would be a major re-education process invol..... wait: you were just talking about how a modernized Corvair could benefit from technology, right?

Hm-mmm.... packed with overcomplicated electronics & safety gimmicks, plethora of plastics inside & out, homogenized by the bile of 'journalists', no hardtops....

Sorry.... why don't you tell me what would make it cool so I can get onboard.... :unsure: Edited by balthazar
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Let's disect: I would have to imagine that the main difference of a modern Corvair (other than the full line-up as you detailed) would be it's rear engine. I'm not convinced that would be a marketing advantage: there would be a major re-education process invol..... wait: you were just talking about how a modernized Corvair could benefit from technology, right?

Hm-mmm.... packed with overcomplicated electronics & safety gimmicks, plethora of plastics inside & out, homogenized by the bile of 'journalists', no hardtops....

Sorry.... why don't you tell me what would make it cool so I can get onboard....  :unsure:

[post="23539"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]

Think of it as a GM USA 4 seat version of the of the Porche Cayman
Posted Image

More pics here.
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If the Corvair engine and chassis layout were being introduced in 2006 in a Chevrolet compact, with all of the technological advances we enjoy today, that's the premise I had in mind. I am only accounting for the product, no adaptations that may be necessary to sell the product.

EDIT: I love the Porsche Cayman! It's beautiful. Although it's more mid engined than rear... I was thinking pre-watercooled 911 levels of horsepower in a small four seater.
Edited by ocnblu
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OK. I would love to see another domestic rear-engined car. Curious: Does the cayman require removal of the rear fender just to change the oil like typical rear-engined porsches?
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The Corvair were introduced today with the same purpose and same chassis layout... a four or five seater coupe, convertible, sedan, wagon, pickup and van with four wheel independent suspension, and a rear-mounted, aluminum, air cooled flat-six cylinder engine?  Can you imagine what a knockout the car would be with today's technology backing it up?[/b]

[post="23519"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]



:wacko:

Maybe something along the lines of this?
Posted Image

Edit: just noticed I forgot to cover up a line. Edited by quantum110
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The back end of the SS Concept always reminded me of a second-gen Corvair. The Corsa even had a silver-painted "cove".
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Thats got to be a hard package to style & accomodate with two rows of seats. Remember how the back of Corvair was comparatively long, as was Fiat 850, Porsche's styling hid this somewhat. I dont see how someone can chop it using an existing front engined car.
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Balthy, what are your examples of safety "gimmicks", as opposed to safety features that are actually necessary? I know I myself for one, don't think side airbags were exactly necessary, at least before manufacturers spent 15 years convincing the average consumer that an SUV has taken the place of the family car, endangering car drivers on the road with people who can't drive SUVs well... On the flipside, however, I see nothing gimmicky about steel safety cages, door beams, the pop-up rollover restraints on convertibles, or crumple zones. But these are just examples on my end, and I'm looking more for examples from you, though you're more than welcome to take me on about mine.
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In the late 50's and even earlier, the Big 3 were feeling a bit of pressure from imported manufacturers which had become successful selling small cars in the USA, especially Volkswagen's Beetle and Microbus, and to a lesser extent, Renault with the Dauphine.  The German and French cars had aircooled rear engined platforms.

GM responded in 1960 with the delightfully innovative, jaunty little Corvair.

WHAT IF...

The Corvair were introduced today with the same purpose and same chassis layout... a four or five seater coupe, convertible, sedan, wagon, pickup and van with four wheel independent suspension, and a rear-mounted, aluminum, air cooled flat-six cylinder engine?

[post="23519"]<{POST_SNAPBACK}>[/post]

Do you know I never looked at it that way (Corvair's many versions, including the van, being answers to the entire rear-engine, air-cooled VW lineup)?

In any case, if such configurations were built today, they would basically start such segments back up. FF (front-engine, front-drive) has taken over so hardcore that no one would be interested in attempting to build RR, and barely even FR volume cars, unless a young, small manufacturer (say, someone Chinese, for instance) wanted to make a name for themselves as being different. Most others, GM included, would relegate it to a folly saved for sports cars.

Sorry for having that kind of thinking and killing the post (like the others), just wanted to weigh in on that part....

edit/add-on: Now, as far as the actual car....

With no engine up front, and that space instead being where the cargo and spare tire are held, what the hecl kinda front crumple zone would the car have? (Then I realize that RR Porsches and MR Ferraris obviously have to be pretty safe if they still exist in the manner they do...and that in turn, the gas tank is also obviously in a fairly safe place)

I also think in our world of aerodynamics, and how the stying theme of long hood/short deck is still the preference, not to mention passenger cars having gotten much taller as they've gotten shorter in length, the car would probably look pretty funky (and I'm not sure if that would be a good funk)....probably the best way to do it would be to engineer the car, interior room, engine and all, and THEN style it (as opposed to how so many cars seem to be done the other way around, compromising room for engine and people) Edited by LosAngeles
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