The Futurliner, Detroit 1940

flyrod

Joined July 2011

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5D Mark 2, 24-105mm, 1:4 lens. Photoshop CS5

The Futurliner

The GM Futurliners were a group of stylized buses designed in the 1940s by Harley Earl for General Motors. They were used in GM’s Parade of Progress, which traveled the United States exhibiting new cars and technology. The Futurliners were used from 1940 to 1941 and again from 1953 to 1956. A total of 12 were built, and 9 were still known to exist as of 2007.

Each Futurliner displayed modern advances in science and technology such as jet engines, stereophonic sound, microwave ovens, televisions, and many other modern innovations of the time.

WWII halted the Parade of Progress. GM refurbished the vehicles and the Parade resumed in 1953, and was discontinued in 1956, a victim of the technologies the Futurliners had featured: television.

Following the Parade of Progress, General Motors disposed of the twelve vehicles. At least one Futurliner was purchased by Oral Roberts and used as a portable stage during evangelical crusades of the 1960s.

9 futurliners have been found and documented with history. Of the 12, Futurliner #11 sold for a record US$4,000,000 (plus premium) on Jan 21, 2006 at a Barrett-Jackson auction in Arizona.

I photographed this Futurliner at the American Truck Historical Society Antique Truck Show in West Springfield Massachusetts on May 31, 2012. Peter Pignelli, the CEO of Peter Pan Bus Lines, owns it.

Artwork Comments

  • flyrod
  • Gail Falcon
  • Bryan D. Spellman
  • flyrod
  • AuntDot
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  • barkeypf
  • flyrod
  • F.A. Moore
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  • Nigel Bangert
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  • WildBillPho
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  • patjila
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  • Paul Hickson
  • flyrod
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