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Vintage car is a clear winner at US auction

21/07/2011


The Ghost Car auction will take place 30 July in Michigan
A transparent car made of Plexiglas from Rohm & Haas is set to fetch up to half a million dollars at an auction in Michigan later this month.
The ‘Ghost Car’ is a Pontiac Deluxe Six built in 1939 by General Motors and Rohm & Haas and was the first transparent full-sized car to be made in America.
A spokesperson for RM Auctions, which is selling the car 30 July, told UK newspaper the Daily Mail: 'The car is in a remarkable state of preservation. It's a testament to the longevity of Plexiglas in an era when automotive plastics tended to self-destruct within a few years. Although it has acquired a few chips and cracks, it is structurally sound and cosmetically clear, showing off the Ghost Car's innards as it did in 1939.”
RM Auctions say the car will fetch about $475,000 (Ј300,500).
The car was originally built for the 1939-10 New York World’s Fair and was displayed on General Motors’ ‘Highways and Horizons’ pavilion.
To make the car, Rohm & Haas copied the design for the Pontiac four-door Touring Sedan to make a Plexiglas body. The body went over a metal structure that had been given a copper wash. The car was completed with rubber mouldings and tires, both painted white.
The engine has a three-speed transmission, a six-cylinder engine, coil spring independent front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes
Rohm & Haas invented Plexiglas in 1933 when the company experimented with polymerizing MMA between two sheets of glass. Rohm soon realized that the acrylic layer separated from the glass to form a solid sheet of plastic – PMMA.
During the war, Plexiglas became popular as a replacement for glass in aeroplanes.
The Ghost Car auction will take place 30 July in Michigan, the US. Interested parties must buy an official auction catalogue for $100 and can view the car on 29 July and the morning of the auction day itself.

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