Chrysler's Turbine Car: The Rise and Fall of Detroit's by Steve Lehto

By Steve Lehto

In 1964, Chrysler gave the realm a glimpse of the longer term. They outfitted a fleet of turbine cars--automobiles with jet engines--and loaned them out to participants of the general public. The fleet logged over 1000000 miles; the workout used to be a raging success.            those turbine engines might run on any flammable liquid--tequila, heating oil, Chanel #5, diesel, alcohol, kerosene. If the autos have been mass produced, we'd have vehicles at the present time that don't require petroleum-derived fuels. The engine was once additionally a lot less complicated than the piston engine--it contained one-fifth the variety of relocating elements and required less upkeep. The vehicles had no radiators or fan belts and not wanted oil changes.             but Chrysler overwhelmed and burned lots of the automobiles years later; the jet car's short glory used to be over. the place did all of it get it wrong? Controversy nonetheless follows this system, and questions about how and why it was once killed have by no means been satisfactorily answered.            Steve Lehto has interviewed all of the surviving individuals of the turbine automobile program--from the metallurgist who created the unique metals for the internal of the engine to the try out driving force who drove it at Chrysler’s proving grounds for days on finish. Lehto takes those first-hand money owed and weaves them right into a nice tale in regards to the coolest motor vehicle Detroit ever produced.

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Among the drivers was a young engineer named Tom Golec and a few others from the Turbine Lab. The 3,020-mile trip took four days. Typical of corporate America, planning for the road trip was more elaborate than the average drive in the country. An itinerary was laid out, and each member of the crew received detailed instructions on how the trip would work. A small caravan accompanied the turbine car, including a truck filled with tools and spare parts and three station wagons for support. On the highway, all cars will maintain a minimum distance of 500 feet from the preceding car.

From New York, the car would make stops in major cities: St. Louis, Tulsa, Amarillo, Albuquerque, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles. Each leg of the trip was detailed in advance: “New York to Harrisburg (167 miles)” began the first page of maps, with estimated departure time, elapsed time for the leg, and projected time of arrival. Golec kept notes in his logbook, observing discrepancies between the corporation’s plans and what actually happened. He even kept odometer readings and average speed figures in the margins.

Where did they go? As the years passed, I learned that most had been destroyed by Chrysler. Why? I finally achieved my dream of owning one of these cars in 2009. I found it to be a practical, quiet, and nice running automobile that could run on a number of different fuels. Tequila, diesel, perfume—anything that would burn with oxygen could fuel this car. What happened to this amazing automobile? In this book, Steve Lehto gives the most detailed and in-depth analysis of the engineers behind this program and their amazing auto.

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