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1955 Chevrolet Biscayne Concept

The 1955 Chevrolet Biscayne XP-37, a remarkable concept car designed by Chuck Jordan, remains a celebrated piece of automotive history to this day. Introduced as "An Exploration in Elegance" by General Motors, the Biscayne made its debut at the 1955 Motorama, a series of extravagant auto shows sponsored by GM, showcasing their vision for the future of automotive styling and production.

Futuristic Design and Innovative Features: The Biscayne was a four-passenger masterpiece, featuring a pillar-less hardtop design with suicide doors, indented side panels, and a unique "Stratospheric" windshield that elegantly swept over the driver's head to form part of the roof. This aerodynamic design not only looked futuristic but also provided a sense of spaciousness and luxury inside the car. The Biscayne's design incorporated styling cues that would later influence several General Motors production models, including the Corvair and Corvette.

Showcasing the New Chevrolet V-8 Engine: One of the Biscayne's main purposes was to serve as a platform to showcase the brand-new 1955 Chevrolet V-8 engine. This 265 cubic inch V-8 powerplant produced 215 horsepower, a considerable amount of power for that era. The Biscayne featured unique swivel front seats, allowing passengers to exit the low-slung car with ease. Interestingly, front and rear ashtrays and lighters were located on the driveshaft tunnel between the passengers, adding a touch of luxury to the interior.

A Survivor Among Concept Cars: Unlike many other concept cars of its time, the Biscayne escaped the unfortunate fate of being ordered for destruction by GM after its use as a styling exercise had ended. This rarity allowed it to survive beyond the Motorama shows, making it a truly special and valuable piece of automotive history.

Influencing Future Designs: The Biscayne's design had a lasting impact on General Motors' future vehicles. Its rear-end styling forecasted trends that appeared five years later, with conservative yet sporty '60s styling cues that influenced models like the Corvair and the '58 full-size Chevrolets. Elements of the Biscayne's design even made their way into the '57 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham, '59 Impala, '61/'62 and '67 Corvette, and '63 Riviera, showcasing the significance of this concept car in shaping GM's design language for years to come.

Resurrection of a Forgotten Gem: In 1958, the Biscayne was almost lost forever when it was condemned to be cut up and crushed at a junkyard. However, fate intervened, and it lay neglected but mostly intact for almost a quarter of a century. Rescued by car enthusiast Joe Bortz, the car underwent painstaking restoration, and its original blueprints were provided by General Motors. In 2008, the Biscayne rejoined other GM concept cars at the GM Tech Center and later stood proudly at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance.

A Glorious Restoration: Following its years of neglect and rescue, the Biscayne received an extensive restoration, returning it to its former glory days at the 1955 Motorama. Every detail was carefully recreated, ensuring that the Biscayne would stand as a timeless symbol of automotive elegance.

Sources: Mario van Ginneken -;

Images: Andre LE ROUX Site,,

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