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Lehto, Steve
Chrysler's turbine car : the rise and fall of Detroit's coolest creation / Steve Lehto ; foreword by Jay Leno
Alternate Title Rise and fall of Detroit's coolest creation
Chicago, Ill. : Chicago Review Press, c2010
book jacket
Location Call Number Status
 4th Floor  TL215.C55 L47 2010    AVAILABLE
Subject(s) Chrysler automobile -- History -- 20th century
Experimental automobiles -- History -- 20th century
Automobiles, Gas-turbine -- History -- 20th century
Physical Description xii, 228 p., [16] p. of plates : ill. (some col.) ; 24 cm
Note Includes bibliographical references (p. 211-218) and index
Contents Foreword / Jay Leno -- Introduction -- 1: Promise of the jet age -- 2: Chrysler's first "jet" car -- 3: Fourth-generation engine: Chrysler's viable automotive power plant -- 4: Ghia turbine car -- 5: User program: the ultimate public relations event -- 6: Globe-trotting Ghia -- 7: Other Ghias in America -- 8: User experiment -- 9: Wrap-up of the user program -- 10: Beginning of Chrysler's financial decline -- 11: Problem of smog -- 12: Chrysler's financial troubles -- 13: Other manufacturers and the turbine -- 14: Death of the turbine program -- 15: Survivors -- 16: Going for a ride in Jay Leno's Ghia -- Epilogue -- Acknowledgments -- Notes -- Bibliography -- Index
Summary From the Publisher: In 1964, Chrysler gave the world a glimpse of the future. They built a fleet of turbine cars-automobiles with jet engines-and loaned them out to members of the public. The fleet logged over a million miles; the exercise was a raging success. These turbine engines would run on any flammable liquid-tequila, heating oil, Chanel #5, diesel, alcohol, kerosene. If the cars had been mass produced, we might have cars today that do not require petroleum-derived fuels. The engine was also much simpler than the piston engine-it contained one-fifth the number of moving parts and required much less maintenance. The cars had no radiators or fan belts and never needed oil changes. Yet Chrysler crushed and burned most of the cars two years later; the jet car's brief glory was over. Where did it all go wrong? Controversy still follows the program, and questions about how and why it was killed have never been satisfactorily answered. Steve Lehto has interviewed all the surviving members of the turbine car program-from the metallurgist who created the exotic metals for the interior of the engine to the test driver who drove it at Chrysler's proving grounds for days on end. Lehto takes these first-hand accounts and weaves them into a great story about the coolest car Detroit ever produced

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