The golden Age of Elegance:
The Art Deco Era of Motor Car Design
The greatest era of coachbuilding spans a period of nearly two decades. From the beginning of the 1920s, the image of the automobile underwent huge development. Having started life essentially as an engineering product, it gradually gained an independent identity as an object of desire and elegance reflecting the aspirations towards perfect form of its era. Flamboyant Art Deco and the refined modernism of Bauhaus competed with each other over those years, but the consensus remained that engineering and speed no longer sufficed to define the character of exclusive automobiles. The language of elegance moved in but there was strict division of labour. The customer first selected their preferred chassis before ordering a body to cloak the frame according to their taste.