Video shows all-new 1960 Chevy Corvair going through its paces

(December 11, 2014) The compact Chevrolet Corvair was a truly revolutionary car when it hit the market as a 1960 model, the first modern American car powered by a rear-mounted air-cooled horizontal six cylinder engine made almost entirely of aluminum driving the rear wheels.

The unique design was conceived by Chevrolet Chief Engineer Ed Cole and became an instant success selling more than 200,000 in its first year. In fact, sales exceeded 200,000 for six straight years.

During its 10-year run from 1960 through 1969, nearly 1.8 million were produced. By the end of production the car came in two-door, four-door and station wagon configurations.

It is interesting to watch the more-than-six-minute advertising video depicting the handling, braking and crash testing that was done on the first Corvair in light of the now-infamous hit piece authored by Ralph Nader in his 1965 book, "Unsafe at Any Speed." A 1972 safety commission report conducted by Texas A&M University concluded that the 1960-63 Corvair possessed no greater potential for loss of control that any other contemporary cars. GM altered the controversial swing-axle suspension, which was the subject of the book, in 1964 and replaced with a fully independent suspension in 1965.

Enjoy the lengthy advertising video and its rather convincing testing results.