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Corvair: the little car that could

September 21, 2011

This is a great little car.  The Corvair was the only car that was mass-produced and American made with an air-cooled engine in the rear.  The battery is up front.  It was made by Chevrolet between 1960 and 1969.  Here’s one that I spotted at the car show at Anchorage Park in North Palm Beach last year.

The Corvair wasn’t made in one type only; it had derivatives including a pick-up, and a van, both commercial and passenger, although I have never seen these myself.  The Corvair 500 series four-door, made in 1960, sold for under two thousand dollars.  According to Wikipedia, the car was “powered by an 80 hp (60 kW; 81 PS) engine and three-speed manual or two-speed Powerglide automatic transmission . . . (it) was designed to have comparable acceleration to the six-cylinder full-size Chevrolet Biscayne.”

The owner of the Corvair at the car show said that he loved the car–no complaints.  You won’t find strictly air-cooled engines in modern vehicles.  Heat generated by an air-cooled engine is released into the air, aided by metal fins outside of the cylinders to increase the surface area.

Pictured here is the Corvair’s air-cooled engine.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. May 16, 2013 8:46 pm

    I learned to drive on a corvair. the one we had would eat fan belts, my sisters and I all became experts at changing the fan belt on this car!!!

    • May 16, 2013 8:55 pm

      That’s so cool! Thanks for posting and sharing your thoughts. 🙂 I haven’t posted on this blog in a while, but I plan to update it soon. Stay tuned! If you like, you can also check out my main WordPress site, http://www.rosasophia.com/ … Have a great night!

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