February 3, 1948 – The first tailfins

General Motors design chief Harley Earl was an inspired man when he gazed upon the WWII twin-tailed P-38 Lightning fighter plane. Using design elements of the plane he ushered in the tailfin era of the automobile, starting with the 1948 Cadillac, the first of which left the factory on this day in 1948. The style proved popular and quickly spread through American automotive design centers, and then around the world. By the end of the 1950s fins had grown from small projections to massive wings with sharp edges. Fins soon dwindled in popularity and following an apex in 1959 the design idea disappeared almost entirely by the early 1960s.  1948 Cadillac Series 62 by sv1ambo.  CC 2.0 https://flic.kr/p/eg2nf21959 Cadillac Cadillac Coupe deVille, when fins were reaching their apex. By Brian CoreyClose up of 1959 Cadillac fins. By Brian Corey

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