Today we learned: The Fiero wasn’t Pontiac’s first mid-engine car – Daniel Strohl @Hemmings

Posted by Charlville
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Today we learned: The Fiero wasn’t Pontiac’s first mid-engine car

Not counting horseless carriages and other early automobiles that placed their engines under and behind-ish the driver, the Pontiac Fiero is often hailed as the first mid-engine American production car, arriving 35 years before the mid-engine Corvette. But, as it turns out, Pontiac’s engineers had investigated the mid-engine layout 50 years ago, long before the Fiero.

True, the XP-21 Firebird I placed its gas-turbine engine behind the driver, making it a mid-engine design, but all three gas-turbine Firebirds were considered GM designs, not of any particular brand, similar to the XP-8 Le Sabre and the Futurliners.

We did recently come across mention that GM considered switching the Firebird and Camaro to mid-engine in the early days of the third-generation F-body’s development. However, it appears those ideas progressed no further than drawings and scale models, and the GM folks involved spent more time debating whether the third-gens – in pursuit of lighter and more fuel-efficient packaging – should be front-wheel drive than they did debating whether they should be mid-engine.

Today we learned: The Fiero wasn’t Pontiac’s first mid-engine car

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Related – The Pontiac Fiero could have been a winner with a supercharged V-6

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