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Saturday, February 27, 2021

Meow! Panhard Le Zebre appeared much too soon before the time it should be

Looking at this car image below as if we are greeted by a large banner that reads 'Welcome to the world of unique vehicles.' Judging from the shape, this car is somewhat unique and can be said to be eccentric because of its unusual design. The car that became known as the Panhard Le Zebre could be said much too soon because appeared before the time it should be.
1953 Panhard Le Zebre was a collaboration result of the French sculptor Jean-Pierre Darnat and silversmith/designer Serge Mouille for Pierre Pothier. (Picture from: Flickr.com)
This retro futuristic two-seater car is built by two French industrial designers, namely Jean-Pierre Darnat (a sculptor) and Serge Mouille (a silversmith and designer of banisters and chandeliers). This unique custom-made car built based on 1953 Panhard X87 owned by Pierre Pothier. As it is known that the car donor is a small car model produced by Panhard, a French car manufacturer between 1952 and 1956.
1953 Panhard Le Zebre posed with Pierre Pothier, the car owner at the Paris district of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. (Picture from: Reddit.com)
As quoted of several sources on the internet, the custom car bodywork was made by hand based of Duralinox, an alloy of lightweight aluminum and magnesium materials. Unfortunately there is not enough data to describe in detail what inspired the car's design when it was started to be built. In our opinion, after seeing the pictures circulating on the Internet, it seems that the car design was inspired by the world of aviation which was becoming a trend in the 1950s.
1953 Panhard Le Zebre built based on the Panhard X87 and made of the duralinox, an alloy of aluminum and magnesium. (Picture from: Customrodder)
It's could be seen clearly on the car's upper construction included its wraparound windshields which is very similar to the one on the jet fighter. Uniquely, the car bodywork does not provide door frames, the only access to enter into the car cabin was jump into through the small gullwing doors attached on the roof just like to access the jet fighter cockpit.
1953 Panhard Le Zebre seem functioned as show car and parked somewhere with the front hood are the writing of "Je ne prête mes yeux qu'a Marchal". (Picture from: Automania.be)
Then if You look carefully ranging from the front to the back-ends, the design looks like a stingray. At the front end is given a different color finish (such as metal or silver), there are a pair of headlights, grille and a pair of small lights with metal shell combined in such a way as to form a pair of mini bumpers placed at right-left of the embossed vehicle number plate. Then on top of the hood there is a large scoop, but it is not known whether it is just an accessory or is it used to cool the engine or what? 
1953 Panhard Le Zebre seem functioned as show car and parked somewhere with the body was full advertisements of the 'Marchal' sparkplugs. (Picture from: Automania.be)
While in the side-look, there's large niche around the front wheels and the rear-ends equipped an unusual fender line with small niche. In our opinion, in the rear-end is where the most extreme uniqueness of this custom car laid. And among the many forms that are similar, but we see it like a stingray tail which later many modern fighter planes adopted.

Too bad there is no information about the engine, and it seems that the drivetrain sector has not changed and continues to use the the Panhard X87's original engine, ie. a 745 cc air-cooled 2-cylinder boxer engine is capable of producing power of about 25.7 kW (34.5 hp). And then those power chanelled through a 4-speed manual transmission system to drive its front wheels.
1953 Panhard Le Zebre seem functioned as show car and parked somewhere with the body was full advertisements of the 'Marchal' sparkplugs. (Picture from: Automania.be)
The existence had now to be a mystery and followed by its uses status as well. As mentioned earlier that the car first owner was Pierre Pothier, and there's no-data about the purposed of the car making. But then it seem be functioned as a show car to promote automotive products (possibly by him or somebody else who was the next car owner), because on a website we found several old pictures show this car parked somewhere with the body was full advertisements of the 'Marchal' sparkplugs and on the front hood are the writing of "Je ne prête mes yeux qu'a Marchal". Meow!😺

Where's the car now? Although from a comment on the Flickr page from someone who claims to be one of the family of the maker estimated that the car is in Tahiti now, because after it was bought and then brought there. Until today, its whereabouts are now completely unknown.😿

That's it, and if the article above is still considered inadequate or inaccurate, or if you have additional information related to these Panhard Le Zebre unique car, please don't hesitate to let us know via the comments column below this article. Or might be You are willing to see another weird car such the Aurora? *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | FLICKR | CUSTOMRODDER | REDDIT | AUTOMANIA ]
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