June 1982

Old News: More Motor Trend SpeculationI saw this nugget and just couldn’t pass it up. It comes from the same issue of Motor Trend as my last post.

Can you guess what car was being predicted in the partial picture to the right? (The tire was drawn in white, I suppose, to draw attention to the body.)

It, like a good number of Motor Trend’s other hunches, did not materialize. In all fairness, it was a two-part prediction and one of the two did make it to production.

Would it have worked?
After seeing the full illustration below it is probably immediately clear to some which Chevrolet model this prediction is based on: the Celebrity.

1985 Chevrolet Celebrity Nomad sketch by MT (1982)

General Motors had only recently introduced their new mid-sized A-bodies (Chevrolet Celebrity, Pontiac 6000, Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera, and Buick Century) and the speculation of new models was already underway.

For 1982 and ’83, the A-bodies were available as two- and four-door sedans but not as a station wagon. That configuration showed up for the 1984 model year. The Detroit Report section of this magazine rightly predicted the station wagon’s ETA but pushed their luck by dreaming up the model shown above.

The artist’s inoffensively-styled three-door sports wagon was anticipated as possibly being on the streets by 1984 or ’85 wearing the name Celebrity Nomad. Details of their envisioned car included a fuel-injected V-6, manual transmission and even independent rear suspension.

The idea was the work of Duane Kuchar who had performed dozens of drawings for magazines over several decades and it appears is currently running an auto design firm called Duane Kuchar Automotive.

1954 Chevrolet Nomad concept rearIt’s unclear what sparked the idea that Chevrolet was considering such a car but it wouldn’t have been entirely uncharted waters.

To the left is the 1954 Chevrolet Nomad concept car from that year’s Motorama show. It was based on the Corvette, however, the idea was received so warmly that GM executives approved the model, so long as it was built off of a more practical model.

1957 Chevrolet NomadThus, starting in 1955, Chevrolet produced the Bel Air Nomad two-door wagon. Did you know that, at $2,571, it was Chevrolet’s costliest car that year?

The top-tier Chevy model would continue through 1957 (shown right) in the two-door configuration before being applied to a four-door wagon in 1958. After that, the name Nomad would find its way to the bottom of the model heap (on Chevelle) before seeing its demise in 1972.

Continue below to the photo gallery which includes a larger version of the illustration and some pictures of the 1954 Nomad concept and production 1957 Nomads.

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