• May 16th 2008 at 2:58PM
  • 11
Click above for high-res gallery of the 1957 Chrysler Diablo Concept

When we think of the words 'Chrysler' and 'Diablo' together, memories come to mind of a time when the American automaker owned Lamborghini and unveiled a successor to the iconic Countach model. But that's not what this is. The Chrysler Diablo Concept actually dates back to 1957 when it was the star of the U.S. auto show circuit. Most of the Autoblog staff wasn't alive back then, but they tell us it was like when the Dodge Viper Concept first debuted in 1989. The car was originally conceived by Chrysler's renowned design head, Virgil Exner, and is an example of aerodynamic design study in the '50s. It's said that the car's shape was inspired by watching ink blots blown by 200 mph winds across the surface of plastic models, which we don't really see in the svelte shape but we'll take their word for it. The 22-foot-long car is built on a shortened 1955 Chrysler 300 series chassis and features a soft convertible top that was added by the Italian styling firm Ghia, who tweaked the car's design by reworking the fins and painting it red (it was originally black) before the car debuted on the 1957 U.S. auto show circuit. The Diablo reportedly cost Chrysler over $250,000 to develop, and we imagine that it will sell for a lot more when it goes up for auction at this year's Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance in the RM Auctions' Sports & Classics of Monterey event. Check out some gorgeous high-res photogrophy of the Chrysler Diablo Concept in the gallery below because, like us, that's probably as close as you'll ever get to it.

[Source: RM Auctions]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Years Ago
      This and the 56 Chrysler Norseman (lost on the SS Andrea Doria) are my favourite concept cars of the 50's. Beautiful styling.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Keep this away from Jonathan Schipper and make sure nobody tells him about this one.

      • 7 Years Ago
      This car started life as the Dart. It had a hard roof that slid into the trunk and had much taller rear fins. Pics can be seen here:


      The retractable roof was removed, convertible top installed and the fins were lowered for the next showcar season.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Beautiful Design. I love the way the grille sweeps around and to the back.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Love it!

      Assuming it's an automatic, but where's the shifter? Push-button, perhaps??
        • 7 Years Ago
        Yes, it is. You can just barely see it between the speedometer and the driver's door.
      • 7 Years Ago
      NICE CAR!!!!
      • 7 Years Ago
      This reminded me of the earlier coverage of the buried Tulsa 1957 Plymouth. I scoured the web and found this pic. http://forum.missbelvedere.com/bbs/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=174&sid=e108fb3854cccae056d62dfed1195071
      • 7 Years Ago
      How is it that these concept cars end up in private ownership to begin with?

      You'd think that the manufacturer would keep them, or at least put them in a corporate-owned museum.
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