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The presentation of the turbine car.

My father gets the keys from Mr. Sturm.

*Remarks by J.M Sturm, Manager - Plymouth Product Planning and Chief Engineer, Chrysler Corporation, in connection with the delivery of a Chrysler Corporation Turbine Car to a selected Duluth motorist at the Edgewater Motel, Duluth, Minnesota, May 13 1965.

Good Morning. As you know, we are here today to deliver a Chrysler Corporation Turbine Car to a resident of this area. Before I introduce the local motorist who will receive a turbine car, I would like to briefly review our turbine program.

The delivery of a Chrysler turbine car to a selected Chicago motorist on October 29, 1963, marked the launching of a market evaluation program which we believe is unique in the history of the automobile business. It was the first time that an automobile company has ever undertaken to place such a new and revolutionary type of vehicle in the hands of the average motorists to study driver reaction under normal, everyday driving conditions.

Our decision, announced* on February 14, 1962, to build 50 specially designed turbine cars for consumer testing marked the culmination of over a decade of intense turbine research by George Huebner and his staff. Since that decision, we have made rapid progress. The special turbine car created by our styling staff has been equipped with an entirely new turbine engine which is advanced in every way beyond that shown to the public in 1962. This latest gas turbine engine -- which some of you have already seen -- is in most respects equal and in many ways superior to the piston engine which had been in use nearly three-quarters of a century. I is the most practical turbine engine ever designed for a passenger automobile.

Fifty turbine cars have been built and are being distributed to about 200 motorists on a rotating system over a two year period. Each selected motorist receives the car for a period of three months under a no-charge use agreement with the company. It then is re-assigned to other users to provide a broad sampling base. The last turbine delivery is scheduled for the fall of this year.

The objective of our turbine program is to test driver and market reaction to turbine power and to obtain service data an operating experience with the turbine car under a wide variety of geographical conditions. It is designed to provide some of the answers needed as a basis for decisions on the future of our turbine car. The results of this evaluation may result in an acceleration of the program. On the other hand, we may decide that further research is required before the turbine car can be put into volume production.

The accounting firm of Touche, Ross, Bailey and Smart makes the random selection of turbine users form our file of unsolicited requests from persons wanting to drive a turbine car. This file currently contains over 30,000 names. Under the selection procedure, we instruct the accounting firm as to the time and place of each delivery. Random selection of user candidates for each location is then made by the accounting firm according to the criteria specified by us to meet market test objectives.

The consumer survey is under the direction of our Marketing and Consumer Research Department. It is aimed at typical motorists whose interests and knowledge of automobiles are confined to their use as personal transportation. We expect the participants to submit the cars to normal everyday driving, and not to put them to any kind of abnormal use such as racing or hauling.

As of today, turbine cars have been delivered to 160 different families in 114 cities in 44 states and the District of Columbia. Three of the cars are in their second use period, eleven in the third period, eleven in the fourth period, ten in the fifth period.

The 158 motorists who received turbine cars prior to today have driven their cars a total of approximately 770,000 miles.

Today a turbine car is also being delivered in Newport News, Virginia.

The people participating in this program come from all walks of life.

A young computer systems engineer received the first car in Chicago. Turbines have since been delivered to an admiral in Washington, D.C.; a lady industrial designer in New York City; a barber in Detroit; an interior decorator in Los Angeles; a missile designer in Orlando; and a housewife in Tacoma.

These examples demonstrate the broad sampling of typical motorists selected for the program. Eventually, turbines will be delivered in most of the nation's major population centers.

Sixty per cent of the turbine testers owned Chrysler products as their personal cars at the time they applied to us to drive a turbine. The other 40 per cent owned competitive makes. The people selected have ranged in age from 21 to 70 years, and approximately 10 per cent of them have been women.

When a turbine is delivered, the motorist is acquainted with our requirements concerning general use of the car. A Turbine Service Coordinator from one of six centers strategically located across the country is designated to maintain contact with the user and provide instruction in the operation of the vehicle.

To qualify as a prospective test driver, a candidate must be a car owner, or a member of a household in which a car is owned by the head of the household, and must have a valid driver's license. In order to ensure a high degree of market exposure and to test the cars in a variety of climatic and geographical conditions, the turbine users are picked from the major population centers throughout the 48 adjacent United States.

Selection is based on market location and on the make, price-bracket and age of the car owned at the time of the application. By selecting people whose car ownership patterns reflect the great variety of cars on the road today, we extend the study to encompass a broad cross-section of the automobile market.

Since we look forward to the day when the gas turbine may be an accepted power plant for family cars, we designed the turbine car as a typical family passenger vehicle. For all practical purposes, the car provides a familiar motoring concept for its driver so as not to divert attention from the performance characteristics of the engine. Styling, while unique, is functional and uncontroversial in order to allow the public to make an objective evaluation of the car as a means of passenger transportation.

The fourth-generation gas turbine which powers the car represents knowledge gained from ten years of intensive research and development. It is considerably advanced beyond the engine first shown to the public in 1962. For instance, weight has been reduced by ten percent to 410 pounds and size has been reduced by twenty-five per cent. The engine housing has been made symmetrical by the use of twin regenerators and a centrally located burner.

The response time, or gas generator acceleration time, from idle to rated speed , had been significantly reduced. Torque had been increased 50 foot pounds to 425 foot pounds.

This new turbine delivers 130 rated horsepower to the rear wheels of the car. Because of the turbine's torque characteristics it produces car activity equivalent to a 230-horsepower V-8 piston engine, but weighs only half as much.

I'm sure that the performance of the Chrysler Turbine Car you will drive this morning will impress you. I'd especially like you to observe the smooth response to the accelerator, the absence of engine vibration, and the low engine noise at normal operating speeds.

We are now ready to introduce to you the Duluth motorist who will put the turbine car int use here for the next three months.

(At this point my family was introduced to the news media at the meeting.)

*Taken from my fathers copy of the remarks given to him by Mr. Sturm.

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