Chevrolet Aerovette

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The Chevrolet Aerovette is a concept car created by the Chevrolet division of General Motors, beginning life as Experimental Project 882 (XP-882). It has a mid engine configuration using transverse mounting of a V-8 engine. Zora Arkus Duntov's engineers originally built two XP-882s during 1969, but then John DeLorean, Chevrolet's general manager, cancelled the program because it was impractical and costly.

When Ford announced plans to sell the DeTomaso Pantera through Lincoln-Mercury dealers, DeLorean ordered one XP-882 cleaned up for display at the 1970 New York Auto Show.

In 1972, DeLorean authorized further work on the XP-882 chassis and gave it a new project code, XP-895. A near-identical body in aluminum alloy that resembles XP-895 was constructed, and became the "Reynolds Aluminum Car." 2 of the Chevrolet Vega 2-rotor engines were joined together as a 4-rotor, 420 horsepower (310 kW) engine, which was used to power XP-895.

The XP-895 was first shown in late 1973. However, with the energy crisis at the time, GM scrapped its rotary work and all plans for Wankel-powered cars.

Another Corvette concept, XP-897GT, appeared in 1973, which used a 2-rotor engine.

In 1976, the 4-rotor engine was replaced by 400 cu in (6,600 cc) Chevy V-8, and was renamed 'Aerovette'. The car was approved for production in 1980. Aerovette featured double folding gullwing doors. The production car would use a 350 cu in (5,700 cc) V-8, and be priced around $15000-18000. However, after chief supporters Duntov, Bill Mitchell, and Ed Cole had retired from General Motors, David R. McLellan decided that a front/mid-engine car would be more economical to build and would have better performance, and cancelled the production of Aerovette. However contemporary import mid engine cars also had poor sales in the United States compared to the Datsun 240Z, which would be the ultimate factor for terminating Aerovette's production.

XP-897GT was later sold to Tom Falconer and fitted with a Mazda 13B rotary engine in 1997.

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