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Custom Car Building Inspiration at Petersen Automotive Museum

Hot Wheels at Petersen Mueseum

Recently I found myself at the Petersen Automotive Museum to check out their newest exhibit, Supercars. Every time I’m there, I leave wanting to go home to my garage and become a mad car-scientist! There are so many things there to provide inspiration, you can’t help it!

1974 Dale, high milage car scheme, petersen automotive museum

From cars with interesting histories, like this 1974 Dale. A 3-wheeled car said to get 70 miles per gallon, it was used by its builder/con-artist Liz Carmichael (a transvestite whose real name was Jerry Dean Michael) to scam nearly $2 million dollars from would-be buyers! The car was a hoax and this is one of 3 prototypes built.

Tucker Automobile at the Petersen, 1948 Tucker

More interesting car history is held by the 1948 Tucker. This model was Preston Tucker’s personal car and one of only 50 pilot models produced. Nonetheless, the car had some very advanced features for its time as well as an interesting story to go along with – told in the movie Tucker: The Man and His Dream.

2005 Mercedes McLaren SLR, petersen museum

The Petersen also has plenty of modern cars. Like this 2005 Mercedes-Benz McLaren SLR. Who knew that SLR stood for Sehr Leicht Rennsport which translates to “super light racing” and is the fastest production car with an automatic transmission?!

Early Electric Car Battery, early electric car, petersen museum

Some of the permanent exhibits at the Petersen include history of the automobile. This battery is out of an electric-powered car from 1897! And we though electric vehicles were something new. The car and battery were engineered by a 17-year-old boy named Earle C. Anthony – how’s that for a science project!

Chrysler Turbine Powered Car, turbine car, petersen automotive museum

Speaking of different-powered cars. Part of the Petersen’s educational exhibits includes how cars work and what powers them. This extremely rare turbine-powered Chrysler is something different!

Movie Cars at Petersen, mach 1, hollywood cars, petersen museum

In addition to their permanent exhibits – the Petersen has a number of rotating exhibits as well. The Hollywood Gallery houses cars owned by celebrities and owned in movies.

NHRA at Petersen, NHRA exhibit, petersen car museum

Or NHRA: Sixty Years of Thunder showcasing important parts of drag racing history.

Supercar Detail at Petersen

Of course cars aren’t ALL about engines. Exhibits walk you through the living history of cars. You can walk through a recreation of an old Southern California “streetscape” and learn about the evolution of cars and city life. Seeing and experiencing these things in person is so much different than looking at something on the internet. For example, getting to look at every angle and detail of a car. If you need some building inspiration – the Petersen Museum is the place to come!

1952 Ferrari, petersen automotive museum

And then, some cars are just amazingly beautiful! This 1952 Ferrari is, I think, the sexiest car I’ve ever seen. Ford borrowed some of the design features when creating the Thunderbird. Believe it or not, this car has never been restored!

Petersen Logo

So the next day that you’re hard at work in the garage and come upon a frustrating stand-still…put down your tools and come out to the Petersen Automotive Museum, you’ll be glad you did. Or maybe you want to learn a few things about cars and be inspired! The Petersen has all sorts of cool programs going on – just check their Petersen Museum Calender for details! One of my car club ladies took her kids recently to a Discovery Day and they had tons of fun – read about it here!

GreaseGirl at Petersen MuseumUntil next time…

Happy Trails!

-Grease Girl