GM Heritage Center

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Under direction by Bill Mitchell, the Corvair Monza GT coupe was designed by Larry Shinoda and Tony Lapine in 1962, borrowing from the Bertone designed Testudo concept car. Like the earlier design, the GT doors swung upward and were actually a front hinged canopy that extended into the B section; the rear engine cover also hinged at the rear. The engine used was a standard Corvair 145 cu. in. 102 hp, flat six with a "two carb-layout." Unlike the production Corvair, the GT engine was mounted ahead of the transaxle, turned around 180 degrees and mounted as a "true" mid-engine layout. The chassis was on a 92" wheelbase, 16 inches shorter than production cars. The overall dimensions were similarly reduced with a length of 165 in, and a height of only 42 inches, creating a diminutive but beautifully proportioned sportscar.

Bsides its streamlined and "swoopy" appearance, the Monza GT was full of other innovative features including magnesium-alloy wheels, 4-wheel disc brakes and fixed seats with adjustable pedals, features that would not find their way into production cars for years.