The History of the Automobile through Antique Cars

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A tour through the Pioneer Auto Show is testimony to America's love affair with the automobile. This eye-misting historical survey begins with the 1902 Curve Dash Olds, continues through Packards from the 30s and 40s, and arrives at muscle cars of the 60s and 70s. A circuit of the display guarantees a warmly nostalgic re-examination of the American car.

"Our extensive collection of antique cars tells the history and evolution of the twentieth century automobile, showcasing the American capacity for invention, innovation and variation," says Dave Geisler, owner of the world famous Pioneer Auto Show in Murdo, South Dakota.

A glance at this auto museum's 1906 Ford Model N, betrays the fragility of early antique cars. When first introduced, the car was seen as more of a novelty than an efficient means of conveyance as this early automobile experienced frequent breakdowns - a result of bad roads and poor engineering.

Reliability furnished by enclosed bodies and standardized controls made vintage cars of the 1920s more widely acceptable. The Auto Show's 1928 Paige-Detroit, six- cylinder, four door, sedan, features this sense of added security. Examples of this solid design are also shown in the museum's two 1937 Super Charged Cords.

Power, speed, and design - classic cars of the 1940s and 50s, like the museum's 1955 Ford Thunderbird V-8 with overdrive, exemplify luxury and performance and are marked by technological advancements — most of the mechanical technology continues to be used in today's automobiles.

Restorable muscle cars, one of the milestones in the history of the automobile, represent the final paragon of owner satisfaction. An example of this is the 1968 Shelby Mustang Fastback - the popularity of its sleek lines and dependable design are clear evidence that the American automobile had truly arrived. The 1970 GTO Judge Convertible demonstrates that modern efficient technology can provide it all: durability, safety, convenience and fashion.

Showcasing the history of the automobile, a tour through the Pioneer Auto Show is not just a sentimental tour of an impressive gaggle of collector cars, but a material reminder of the true American spirit.


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