Monday, February 12, 2018

Le Sabre: First Public View, 1950

General Motors' first post- World War 2 dream car (as they were called then) was the LeSabre (brief Wikipedia entry here).

It was astonishingly futuristic.  And that astonishment took place for the first time for many people when Life, a leading American general-interest magazine, published photos of the car.  This happened in late December of 1950 when the 1 January 1951 issue appeared in mail boxes and on news stands.  The LeSabre public announcement, for that's what it amounted to, appeared in an article about General Motors, king of corporate America at that time.

Below is my scan of that landmark image along with some publicity photos of what appears to be a LeSabre mockup.

Some puzzling items: Only one functional LeSabre was built, yet the Life image shows two cars, neither painted its normal silvery blue.  My guess is that the upper car is a detailed mockup.  Note the lack of chrome on the rear bumper: the real LaSabre had chromed bumpers and trim.  The nearer car has a chromed front bumper and grille, so it must be the real thing, but painted like the mockup and not yet in silvery blue.

Knowledgeable readers are urged to correct me in comments if my speculations are wrong.


Image as it appeared in Life magazine's 1 January 1951 issue that was on news stands in late December of 1950.

GM styling boss Harley Earl posing with what looks like a LeSabre mockup -- note the dull finish on what are chromed areas on the actual car..

Publicity photo of the same likely LeSabre mockup.

Publicity photo of the apparent LeSabre mockup with model at the wheel.

1 comment:

jrm said...

I would hazard a guess that the "two cars" image was a photographic composite showing two views of the same car.