1969 Chevrolet Astro-III 02

Chevrolet Astro III -

The Chevrolet Astro III was the third in a series of Astro concepts, with Astro I bowing in 1967, and the XP-800 Astro II released the following year. Astro III had an Allison turbine engine in the rear, rear wheels mounted in twin pods and a pair of wheels close together up front. A canopy rose to enter/exit thetwo-passenger cockpit.

The Astro III was a sleek, two-passenger experimental car resembling an executive jet aircraft, even down to its tricycle-type wheel arrangement. It was envisioned as a high-performance vehicle suited for travel on restricted access or possibly systems-controlled interstate highways of the future.

The Astro III vehicle, with its red and black fiberglass body, tapered to a slim nose enclosing twin tires on a common pivot, giving the appearance of a single front wheel. A power-actuated canopy moved forward and upward from the passenger compartment, to give easy entrance and exit to the specially contoured individual seats.

Astro III had an aircraft-type interior finished in black. The twin front wheels were steered by power-assisted pistol grip lever controls. Rear vision was provided by closed circuit television from a viewing screen mounted on a console between the seats.

The owerplant for Astro III was the Model 250-C18 gas turbine engine produced by the Allison Division of General Motors. This engine was selected because of its lightweight and high power output. It weighed only 139 pounds and produced 317 net horsepower.