Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Preston Tucker: The Man Behind the Car-- Part 1

From the Jan. 30, 2011, Chicago Tribune by Paul Duchene.

"A Detroit policeman during Prohibition, a lifelong salesman and a motorhead since the first car he saw scared his grandfather's horse in 1906, Preston Tucker lived life at full speed."

One of his first jobs was as a delivery boy at Cadillac where he impresses his bosses by using roller skates to go faster. His heroes were race car drivers. In the 1930s, he sold every major brand of American car and lots of them.

Not only was he energetic, but a designer as well. With World War II looming, he built a machine shop behind his home and built a high speed armored car with a power-operated gun turret. The military bought the turret and fitted it onto PY-boats and aircraft.


Another Tucker goal was to build cars. In 1946, he hired Alex Tremulis to design his car. Before being drafted into the Army, Tremulis had designed the 1941 Chrysler Thunderbolt. In the Army Air Force he designed a bomber and a vertical takeoff aircraft that would eventually become the space shuttle.

More to Come. --RoadDog

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