During the 1960s and early 1970s Chrysler in the USA developed a number of striking concept cars.

Sensations at the time, many of these cars are now forgotten, having been consigned to the crusher when their auto show usefulness reached its use-by date.

The 1969 “70X” is one of those cars.

In 1967 Chrysler’s design boss, Elwood Engel was beginning to develop a new design theme for the company’s cars.

The styling of the next generation of Plymouths, Dodges, Chryslers and Imperials was called, “fuselage styling” or the “fuselage look”.

The basic theme of fuselage styling was summed up by Chrysler in one of its advertisements.

It proclaimed: “Your next car can have a fuselage-frame that curves up and around you in one fluid line. Close the window and the arc is complete. From under the doors to over the cockpit. Inside your next car, a cool, quiet room of curved glass and tempered steel.”

Chrysler’s 70-X did not preview that fuselage styling theme. Rather, it’s job was to support the new design trend and give it some extra pizzazz.

Built of fibreglass the car was not an innovator of styling. It was constructed to showcase Chrysler’s engineering thinking and prowess.

The front end, bonnet and grille looked like they had escaped from a 1967 Pontiac.

The rear end, with the tail lights in the bumper bar, reflected the 1968 Chevrolet Impala.

It was in the middle that all the innovative attention was focused.

The left side front and rear doors slid open, on parallelogram hinges, allowing for incredibly easy access to the cabin.

The right side had just one very large door, which also slid open, similar to Chrysler’s mini-vans almost a decade and a half later.

As with so many concept cars, the 70-X no longer exists.

There is no definitive information about what happened to it but most likely it was dismantled or crushed.

David Burrell is the editor of retroautos.com.au

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Burrell

David Burrell is founder and editor of Retroautos.com.au, a free online classic cars magazine. Dave has a passion for cars and car design. He's also into speedway, which he's been writing about since 1981. His first car was a rusted-out 1961 Vauxhall Velox. His daily driver is a Pontiac Firebird. Prior to starting Retroautos, David was an executive in a Fortune 500 company, working and living in Australia, NZ, Asia, Latin America and the UK.