The 1948 Panhard Dynavia Still Looks Like It Came From The Future

Forget the Citroen DS or any other futuristic, streamlined car, because the Panhard Dynavia trumps them all. Revealed at the 1948 Paris motor show, it’s not particularly revolutionary in the way it works, but in terms of looks, we may not have even been surpassed it today…

People in the late 1940s were fascinated with the future, as they envisioned streamlined pods autonomously driving on suspended highways, taking to the air as they pleased. They were very far from that goal in term of tech and feasibility, but one thing the era is famous for is visionary, bold design.

The Dynavia, like many post-war streamlined vehicles, took inspiration from the aviation industry and its designer, Louis Bionnier,(like so many others of the time) seemed fascinated with the simple teardrop shape.

The running gear was shared with the much more conventional (but still quirky looking) Dyna X, but thanks to its lower weight and drag, the Dynavia was some 20 km/m (12 mph) faster. Power came from the same 610cc twin-cylinder boxer engine that made 28 PS and it drove the front wheels through a four speed column shift gearbox.

Back in the day it was presented as a prototype / concept of which two were made. One was lost in an accident, while the other now resides the Cité de l’Automobile, in its native France.

photos via Wikimedia Commons, classics.com, ultimatecarpage.com, banovsky.com

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