Five periods of Australian automotive design are examined: the early inventors/builders up to WW1 (1895-1916); opportunities that arose from an embargo on imported bodies (19717-1922); design and development of post war Australian cars (1919-1938); the development of the standardised motor body, its variation and unique body styles (1926-191938); and the opportunities afforded by WW11 to design and produce an Australian car, principally the Holden (1939-1953).
The outcome is the first scholarly account of early Australian automotive design during its formative years. The research uncovers the names of Australian designers who have been neglected or are unknown, and it also sets out to discover unknown early Australian automobiles.
Early Australian Automotive design explores the design effort of individual component designers, many who produced internationally successful automobile engines, transmission systems and suspension parts.
Several automobile historians have identified and listed Australian car production, all dare to have included imposters. This book sets out to clarify what an Australian car is and lists true Australian efforts. Many significant endeavours of design and manufacture are included in the main text with the majority covered in a separate chapter. Short biographies of influential Australian automobile designers are spread throughout the book.
As the Australian automobile manufacturing industry closes and restructures in 2017 there is a need to ensure that its design legacy is investigated and recorded so that we may understand the uniqueness and inventiveness that emerged and developed during the 20th century, and is still evident in the current automotive design environment in Australia. Early Australian Automotive Design fulfills this legacy.