Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Dudes, here’s your electric car – Sixties style!

The pulptastic cover art on the July 1960 issue of Men magazine is by of the most talented and popular pulp artists ever, James Bama.

It’s a teaser for an article inside about Colonel T.E. Lawrence, the legendary “Lawrence of Arabia.”

The article itself is non-fiction and basically non-embellished. But you wouldn’t know that from the cover painting.

Bama’s cover art is men’s pulp fantasy of a high order: a hunky he-man and his trusty Arab sidekicks saving minimally-clothed harem babes from Telly Savalas’ evil Turk brother!

It’s Lawrence as played by Doc Savage. In fact, Bama also painted the covers for Bantam’s popular Doc Savage paperbacks.

I’m a big fan of both the Doc Savage prewar pulp magazines and the later paperbacks.

I’m also a big fan of David Lean’s epic 1962 film, Lawrence of Arabia.

So, I especially liked this issue’s cover art and cover story.

It also has a fascinating article about electric cars.

The article describes various electric vehicles being developed by both small innovative companies and larger corporations, like American Motors and General Motors, and it suggests that electric cars would likely be common before the Sixties were over.

The article also talks about a new breakthrough – Prius-like hybrid gas and electric cars. And, it notes that “many major companies – Union Carbide, Chrysler, General Electric and Curtiss-Wright among them” are “hard at work” developing non-polluting, hydrogen fuel cells to power our cars.

Yeah. That was back in 1960.

Apparently, those big corporations needed to do a lot of testing before they thought it would be safe for us consumers to have that kind of car tech.

Thanks for watching out for our best interests, guys.

NOTE: Click here to read the entire electric car article in PDF format.