Edmond Rumpler, a brilliant Austrian aircraft designer, introduced his Tropfenwagen at the 1921 Berlin Auto Show. The teardrop-shaped body (tropfen translates to drop), with its
curved glass greenhouse, produced a very low drag coefficient of only .28, which is on par with the aerodynamic cars of today. In addition to the shape of the body, the minimal
horizontal fenders and the belly pan helped to achieve this figure. We have put together an article covering this legendary car along with a neat early MOVIE and many photos and
period magazine illustrations that you can see @ http://theoldmotor.com/?p=118297
That is very cool !
Thank you for posting ...
David, do you know if Rumpler was a colleague of Porsche? There appears to be several design similarities including the general layout, between the Tropfenwagen and early Porsche design studies which ultimately lead to the VW.
It is interesting how Henry Ford's concept of a light weight - high strength design, with a unitized power plant, also central in Rumpler's design, points directly at our present .
Thank you for posting this interesting information.
They burned a few of these during the filming of Fritz Lang's "Metropolis". My dad said they went to see this movie when it came out and left shaking their heads. The Mortensens were not into symbolism in movies.
John Semprez "David, do you know if Rumpler was a colleague of Porsche?"
John one of our readers, Tom M. who is knowledgeable on the subject had the following to say about it:
"Interesting that prior to his pre-1920 aviation work, Rumpler collaborated with Ledwinka in auto design, at Nesselsdorfer- Wagenbau, a predecessor of Tatra Motors."
You can learn more about Tatra here: http://theoldmotor.com/?s=tatra
I have not had the time to research it any further, but after studying the subject it is evident that his design was used later by Porsche in both his own car and the VW.
It idea was also used by Auto Union in its pre-war racing cars.
Below is another look at the drivetrain. Many more photos and much info can be found here: http://theoldmotor.com/?p=118297
Thank you David.