This Firebird concept car, the first one, literally cannot be driven anywhere but in salt fields because it moves with jet propulsion that would burn away any asphalt road. Of course, like most of the coolest cars all the automakers produce, it's "experimental." (Copyright PapiBlogger, 2011)
Ok, before I go anywhere too strange with this, let me start by saying that the folks at General Motors got me THISCLOSE to actually becoming an official car enthusiast. Given that I’m in Detroit for their world class auto show you might assume that this is the natural progression of being dazzled by all of the latest and greatest toy cars on display but that’s not what tantalized me. What got me THISCLOSE to worshipping cars was actually visiting the hallowed grounds of General Motors Heritage Center, a huge, private access museum that’s a 30-minute drive outside of Detroit.
This 1911 Oldsmobile Limited is GM's most prized car, the automaker's Mona Lisa of vehicles and is worth between $2 and $8 million. In 1915 this vehicle, only one of three surviving, retailed for $5,000, an astounding figure for its time. (Copyright PapiBlogger, 2011)
GM's Heritage car exhibit has all of the automaker's most prized vehicles and is more impressive than any car collection you'll ever see. Even a car novice like me was blown away by it. (Copyright PapiBlogger, 2011)
You want to talk about a car exhibit that blows your socks off? Nothing in the fancy halls of the Detroit auto show remotely compares to GM’s collection and I wasn’t the only one who felt like that. All the fanatical car bloggers that came with me were saying the same thing, drool spilling from their mouthes as they literally almost started worshipping the vehicles in front of me.
The Heritage Center has more than 125 cars in exhibit at any one time and is only available for viewing by invitation so you might say this is one of the neatest perks about blogging: you get to see really cool things like this. The overall collection has more than 400 vehicles and one of them is estimated to be worth more than $8 million so you know this is some serious business.
Below are some of the vehicular specimens I was able to snap in our very limited time at The Heritage. Enjoy and please don’t drool on your computers, smart phones or tablets!
Concept cars like this 1956 Firebird II Experimental are often created just to test technical and design whimsies of engineers and artists. Some vehicles like this one test things that are either incorporated or discarded in future models. The Firebird would launch several years later. (Copyright PapiBlogger, 2011)
When I saw this 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air in the collection it reminded me how my these vehicles abound in my ancestral homeland of Cuba. Some Cubans are going to do very well one day. (Copyright PapiBlogger, 2011)
1905 Buick Model C (Copyright PapiBlogger, 2011)
Perfectly lined up for a drive through order of burgers. (Copyright PapiBlogger, 2011)
1932 Chevrolet Deluxe (Copyright PapiBlogger, 2011)
Tags: 1911 Oldsmobile Limited, bloggers, Chevy, concept cars, Detroit auto show, General Motors, Heritage Collection