Tucker Model 48 appears for the 1st time at the Pebble Beach Competition d & # 39; Elegance 2018.

A rear-mounted flat 6-engine, with rear-wheel drive – most people would say that this describes the layout of a popular German sports car, but then they would forget the Tucker.

The Tucker 48 was the short-lived dream of Preston Tucker, a visionary from the 1940s who had the ambition to be the car of the future, today & # 39; to make.

In total only 51 Tucker Model 48 Sedans were built and a dozen of these cars will appear in a one-off feature class at the Pebble Beach Competition d & # 39; Elegance 2018.

In the aftermath of the Second World War, the American car industry survived on cars that had been designed several years before the war. Preston Tucker regarded this as a problem and a challenge; he found that those cars were outdated, unsafe and inefficient. With his Tucker 48 he tried to catapult the American car into the modern era.

In addition to placing a rear engine in a domestic full-sized sedan, Tucker was the pioneer of a streamlined post-war fastback styling, unit body construction, the omni-directional center headlight, seat belts, safety impact ceilings and more. George Lawson designed the prototype of Tucker Torpedo and Alex Tremulis, who together designed the Chrysler Thunderbolt, wrote the production car.

Although short-lived, the radical engine in the back made Tucker national headlines. The intriguing story told in the film by Francis Ford Coppola Tucker: The Man and His Dream, cast Preston Tucker as a lone inventor who fights against the huge Detroit car manufacturers and entrenched interests, and bullied by the nefarious broadcaster Drew Pearson, the devious American lawyer Otto Kerner Jr. and the crusading & # 39; senator from Detroit & # 39; Homer Ferguson.

There were rumors that Tucker was a scammer and that his car was a Ponzi plan. Just as he was preparing for the production, Tucker was examined by a large jury for possible manipulation of stocks and other criminal activities. After a SEC investigation and a sensational trial, Preston Tucker was acquitted of all charges, but he had lost all his funding and the company went into suspension.

Many people think they know Tucker's story, but many are wrong.

There has never been a Tucker 48 on the channel that serves as the competition on Pebble Beach, but on Concours Sunday Tuckers will go to that field en masse. An original Tucker test chassis, shown with thanks to the Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) Museum, offers a rare look at the Tucker foundations and its innovative technology. The same museum brings the only remaining "Tuckermatic", a Tucker equipped with an automatic transmission. The William E. Swigart Jr. Automobile Museum brings the "Tin Goose", a name that is used lovingly in reference to the prototype of 1947, and The Henry Ford brings a Tucker that was completely dismantled by the Detroit News during a hot taste after the SEC Grand case. Jury. An extra nine Tucker 48 sedans will also be at hand.

About 70 years after the founding of the company and 30 years after the launch of Coppola's popular film, it's time to honor a daring attempt by a flamboyant but sincere promoter who is doing his best has done to shake the Big Three – and almost succeeded.

From Ken Gross & Noah Thanos

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