Futuristic 1952 Chrysler styling prototype to be auctioned in New York; its “wild technology” includes a hydraulically operated spare wheel
Concept cars don’t generally go far and most end up sidelined to the world of dreams, but a 1952 Chrysler D’Elegance by Ghia headed to auction in December is something quite to the contrary.
Described as an ‘Idea Car’ and the product of a collaboration between Chrysler’s Virgil Exner Sr. (1909 – 1973) and Ghia’s Felice Mario Boano (1903 – 1989) – the designer of the Ferrari 250 GT Boano – the D’Elegance was built on a shortened 292 centimetre chassis and comes with two comfortable armchairs, power steering and electric windows.
What makes this car standout, however, are its gunsight taillights, distinctive egg-crate grille and “wild technology” such as a rear deck lid with a hydraulically operated full-size spare wheel that raises and lowers at the touch of a switch.
Described by Virgil Exner Jr. as “one of my father’s favourite cars” in 2011, the D’Elegance now comes with a 1956 vintage 354 Hemi V8 engine and a pedigree that includes ownership in the Blackhawk Collection, winning a special class of Chrysler Concepts at the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance and having been driven through the Alps from Monaco to Venice as part of the Louis Vuitton Classic Serenissima Run.
RM Sotheby’s will sell the fully restored car with an estimate of £682,000 to £834,000 ($900,000 to $1.1 million, €771,000 to €943,000 or درهم3.3 million to درهم4 million) at their ‘Icons’ sale in New York on the 6th December.