GM La Sabre Concept Car

This is the GM Concept Car La Sabre which appeared on the cover of Motor Trend Magazine in 1951. Look at this car and think what was on the street in 1951. Remember the 1951 Ford, Chevrolet or Plymouth? How about the 1951 Hudson or Studebaker? Were there tail fins any where in site? How about wrap around windshields? When the public saw this car for the first time in 1951 it must have caused quite a stir!

This concept car was soon followed by similar and smaller two seat concept cars for Chevrolet, Oldsmobile and Pontiac. Those cars followed a slightly toned down design theme found on the La Sabre and eventually led to the production of the Corvette. This car is outlandish but also extremely beautiful. If there was one car I could have taken home from the Amelia Island Concours de’Elegance in 2010 the La Sabre would have been it.

There is no mistaking the jet fighter influence in the design and check out those “Dagmar” bumpers that would soon show up on the Cadillac. Where are the headlights? I looked this front end over for a longtime and could not figure it out. When I got time and did some research I found a photo that reminded me where they were; the center oval grill opens to reveal two headlights!

Tail fins were on there way in 1951 but would take until 1959 for the Cadillac to surpass these examples.

The exhaust tips in the rear bumpers would also make there way into production in some GM products in the 50s including Corvettes.

Look at the circular dash pod with gauges all around the steering column. There are also two fuel gauges; one for gas and one for alcohol!

This is the brake light. Believe me, when the driver hit s the brakes you know it!

One Comment

  1. Harley Earl’s Le Sabre did indeed shake up the auto design world as well as the public and certainly influenced multiple GM production cars in future years.
    It also caused a renowned European coach building firm, Spohn Carosserie in Ravensburg Germany to offer the tail fin element in its portfolio of options available to those seeking custom body work done on their own chassis. The Le Sabre -like tail became almost standard for Spohn customs early to mid-’50s. One such car (of many) is discussed here:

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