What is a concept car, and why is it so rare? In a nutshell, concept cars are cars that designers and manufacturers create to gauge the public’s reaction to a new idea for a future model or technological advance they have been discussing, before they are memorialized in an actual production car. The concept car is the brainchild of famed automobile designer Harley Earl; he featured the cars in his traveling Motorama shows during the 1950s and beyond. We assume Harley came up with the idea of showcasing new ideas in a traveling format after having his Futurliners participate in the Parade of Progress in the 1930s. You can read more about the Parade of Progress, and even about a Futurliner that was offered on eBay on our post, The future was not what it used to be.
Today’s remarkable find is not an original concept car, but a re-creation of a classic, this 1954 Corvette Nomad Concept Car:
The listing describes the car in detail, but here is a summary:
“The car that you see before you is the 1954 GM Motorama Corvette Nomad re-creation and follows the lines identically and to perfection of the original 1954 Corvette Motorama Nomad that was destroyed. The current owner and the person responsible for this ‘back to life’ Chevrolet Nomad has spent over five years and almost $400,000.00 to produce the car. Due to personal reasons he has made the painful decision to offer the car for sale.
The re-creation 1954 Corvette Nomad has been replicated to the colors and patterns of the original 1954 Corvette Nomad that was shown on the Motorama turntable in 1954. This car would be a great addition to any collection or if you are only going to have one collectible car this is a great opportunity.”
According to the Remarkable Corvette’s website, only five Nomads were ever built for the traveling show, and of those only three are known to exist. So it is not a surprise that the car on offer is a re-creation, albeit one that has been lovingly built over seven years at a cost of over $400,000. The listing elaborates that the builder’s interest in Corvettes stems from his teens, and that the creation of this car “was supported by years of collecting information about the Nomad through printed material, factory photos, factory engineering drawings and all pertinent material available.”
It looks almost identical to the car displayed at the 1954 Motorama in New York City:
The seller guarantees the car is more than able to handle today’s highway speeds, and that it “meets all of today’s standards and requirement.” The high bid is over $68K, but so far the reserve has not yet been met. The seller says that the reserve “is almost pennies on the dollars for the cost of the car.”
Here is a video of the car:
If you want to find out more about concept cars, click a link below:
Wikipedia Concept Cars – includes lots of information, and links to, specific concept cars profiled on Wikipedia.
Remarkable Corvettes – more information about the Nomad.