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1959 Ghia Selene I Concept Car by Tom Tjaarda

The 1959 Ghia Selene I Concept Car, designed by Tom Tjaarda, made its debut at the Turin Motor Show in 1959, showcasing a futuristic and avant-garde design that pushed the boundaries of automotive styling. This remarkable concept car bore striking similarities to the Renault Project 900 concept, featuring a cab-forward design with a spacious rear area intended for the placement of the engine. One of the most distinctive aspects of the Selene I was its unconventional appearance, which made it appear as though the front of the car was the rear, and vice versa.


Designed to accommodate six passengers, the Selene I boasted a unique seating arrangement, with two seats positioned upfront and four seats in the rear facing each other. However, despite its innovative design and spacious interior layout, the Selene I was never fitted with an engine, remaining a concept vehicle throughout its existence.


The exterior styling of the 1959 Ghia Selene I was characterized by its sleek and aerodynamic profile, with a forward-control design that emphasized efficiency and modernity. The front end of the car, which overhung the front wheels, lacked the traditional grille found in conventional vehicles, further adding to its futuristic appeal. Instead, what appeared to be a split radiator grille framed by headlights was actually the rear bumper and taillights, contributing to the overall illusion of the car's reversed orientation.


While the designers of the Selene I aimed to reduce drag and enhance efficiency by rounding off the front end of the vehicle, some critics found the overall design to be somewhat awkward, both in terms of aesthetics and practicality. Nonetheless, the Selene I remains a fascinating example of automotive design from the past, offering a glimpse into the creative and innovative spirit of the era.


Tom Tjaarda, the talented designer behind the Selene I, went on to become one of GHIA's leading stylists, leaving a lasting impact on the automotive industry with his visionary designs. The Selene I paved the way for future concepts, including its successor, the Selene II of 1962, which featured a central driving seat and two rear seats facing backward, further exemplifying Tjaarda's ingenuity and creativity.


Check out the 1962 Ghia Selene II.


Source: 95 Octane

Images: www.shorey.net; www.tom-tjaarda.net