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Join Date: Aug 2006
The first running prototype of the Scarab was completed in 1932, probably the first car ever with an aluminum spaceframe unit-construction body, although the frame parts were steel. The second Scarab, completed in 1935, was an evolution of the first, incorporating some styling and mechanical changes. The headlamps were set behind a fine, vertical-bar grille, and at the rear, narrow chrome bars curved from the back window down to the bumper, giving the car its Art Deco appearance. The body was now steel to reduce cost.
Stout issued a statement that the car would be manufactured in limited quantities and sold to those who were invited to buy. Up to a hundred a year were to be made in a small factory at the corner of Scott Street and Telegraph Road, Dearborn, Michigan. Although the Scarab garnered much press coverage, at $5,000 (equivalent to $80,000 in 2010), when a luxurious and ultra-modern Chrysler Imperial Airflow cost just $1,345, very few would pay this hefty premium for innovation, and total production of the Scarab amounted to no more than nine units. The vehicles were completely hand-built and no two Scarabs were identical.