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1967 Chevrolet Astro 1 concept car

1967 Chevrolet Astro 1 concept car

1967 Chevrolet Astro 1 concept car
Make Chevrolet
Model Astro 1
Concept year 1967
Production year -
Engine horizontally-opposed six-cyl

The Chevrolet Astro 1 was a way out and wild concept vehicle which GM rolled out in 1967.

The Astro 1 concept was a million miles away from the boxy people carrier which would eventually utilize the Astro name decades later. In fact it's difficult to think of any two vehicles GM's ever produced which are more different!

The Astro 1 concept used some of the technology and engineering from the Chevrolet Corvair. The Astro 1 was the first of a trio of Astro concepts, but to this day it remains the most memorable and innovative.

Unusual features could be found everywhere on the vehicle. Beginning with the overall proportions. At just 3 feet (1 m) tall the coupe was almost unrealistic in appearance. How the hell would you get in and out? Well the answer lay in the large clamshell canopy which opened rearward to allow access to the interior. There wasn't much hope for Grandma, but most limber thirty-somethings could manage to get themselves in and out. The car also provided some additional help during entry and exit by lifting up the seats once the canopy was open to allow easier entry and exit.

Not only did the short height of the Astro 1 concept provide problems for the packaging of people inside the vehicle, it also meant the engineers had to come up with a compact drivetrain for the car. This is where the Corvair comes in. Mounted in the rear of the Astro 1 was a 240 hp, air-cooled, horizontally-opposed six cylinder engine derived from the Corvair's powerplant.

One of the best aspects to the Chevrolet Astro 1 was the thorough engineering which went into the design. This wasn't just some cobbled together chassis with a sleek body bolted on top. It had four-wheel independent suspension with custom made components, 4-wheel disc brakes, magnesium wheels, and a semi-monocoque design with custom chassis members.

Thankfully the Chevrolet Astro 1 lives to this day. It is still owned by GM and is part of the company's heritage collection.



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