This 1959 Scimitar may not be one of the Chrysler Corp.’s best designs, but it is interesting. It was difficult to photograph at the National Automobile Museum in Reno, Nev., when I visited, but I did my best to try to photograph a car that you soon will not forget.
Built in Detroit, its 413-cubic-inch engine was power-packed with 8 cylinders that could reach 350 hp.
“The Scimitar was designed and developed to suggest functional and decorative applications for aluminum in automobiles,” states a museum car summary. “The Scimitar project was sponsored by Olin Mathieson Chemical Corp. and was designed and built by Brooks Stevens Associates and Reutter & Co.
“A two-door Scimitar convertible was representative of boulevard-type sports cars, having a hard top that retracted automatically into the luggage area.
“A four-door Scimitar town car phaeton could be driven as a fully enclosed formal sedan, a town car with partially retracted roof, or an open convertible with both roofs retracted into the luggage area.
“The Scimitar station sedan, as displayed here, was intended as a family all-purpose car. Three types of cars were derived from the same basic design and tooling, and 1959 Chrysler New Yorker chassis ere used.
“The body utilized removable aluminum anodized quarter panels for reduced maintenance and aesthetics. The grill, bumpers, trim, wheel discs and many interior treatments are of brushed and anodized aluminum, substantially reducing the vehicle weight. The car’s name was derived from the shape of a scimitar, a saber with a curved blade.
“Three Scimitar models were exhibited first at the 1959 Geneva Auto Show, then at the 1961 International Automobile Show in New York.”
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© Glenn Thomas Franco Simmons' Photography