Classic American

Reviews

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Author: Peter Grist

Published by: Veloce Publishing Ltd ISBN: 978-1-845848-63-7

Price: RRP £25. Available new from Amazon from £8.99 plus postage.

I first reviewed this excellent pictorial biography of Virgil Exner, the visionary stylist who designed so many iconic American cars over several decades,d bbackk iin early 2016. Veloce’s fascinatin­g book dated back to 2007 and had just been republishe­d in softback. The price was a reasonable £25. However, just four years later, one can find new copies online from retailers such as Amazon for around £9. This is a bargain if ever I saw one!

As I reported previously, Virgil Exner was undeniably one of the world’s greatest automobile designers, though his work was not limited to cars. He had a love of speedboats and assisted in the designs of several military vehicles during the Second World War, including the DUKW amphibious cargo truck and the tracked Weasel. He first came to the attention of the auto industry while working for Studebaker, though his move to the Chrysler Corporatio­n in the late Forties was where he undertook his most memorable work, including the increasing­ly outrageous finned Mopars of the late Fifties.

An accomplish­ed and celebrated artist in his own right, his imaginatio­n enabled him to design, and in several examples arrange to have built, stylish sports cars, unique race cars and one-off concept vehicles. This profusely illustrate­d book is awash with many photos of this truly remarkable man, illustrati­ons and contempora­ry adverts, a number of which had never been seen before. It was good value originally. Now under half price, grab a copy while you still can!

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