Tatra87 has already written his paean to the Panhard 24 B and CT coupes, but after three years, I’m more than ready to wallow in some more Panhard goodness. Corey Behrens shot this superb 24 CT in Heemskerk, NL, so let’s indulge ourselves. The 24 CT was the short wheelbase 2+2 coupe; the 24 B was the two-door sedan with a longer wheelbase.
The styling influence of the 1960 Corvair is of course obvious, but Panhard took the Corvair four-door sedan’s “flying wing” roof and rear window and applied it beautifully to the coupe.
Early on, in 1958, Chevrolet toyed with the idea of putting the flying wing roof on the coupe too, but abandoned that in favor of a more close-coupled coupe roof. Just as well, as this was a bit too exaggerated. The two wrap-around windows were likely a bridge too far too.
The front end deviated from Corvair influence, for improved aerodynamics, which was of paramount concern given its small air-cooled 848cc boxer twin, driving the front wheels.
With all of 50 hp, it was still able to propel the 24CT to right around 100 mph (160 km/h). Not bad, for 850 cc.
Among other features, there were finned aluminum drum brakes, fully exposed to the cooling air and surrounded by a trim ring. Shades of Pontiac’s famed eight-lug wheels.
The 24’s sheer efficiency and the looks to go with that make it one of the more extraordinary cars of its times, or any time.