Chrysler was formed by Walter Chrysler and from the outset Chrysler cars were intended to be innovative examples of modern engineering. In 1924 the company launched the Chrysler Six, complete with a high compression six-cylinder engine. With Fred Zeder, Owen Skelton and Carl Breer, previously top class engineers at Studebaker, on board, the Chrysler Corporation came into being in 1925.
Chrysler's engineering innovation helped the company prosper, a great example of which was fluid drive, an early version of automatic transmission. However, there were also failures. The Airflow, launched in 1934, designed by Breer, was the first streamlined production car, but despite setting over 70 speed records on the Utah salt flats it failed to appeal to the American motoring public.
Car production during the 1940s was disrupted, because of the Second World War. However, before the United States entered the conflict the company continued with their innovative car designs. They included the New Yorker Navajo, launched in1940, which continues to be a rare, but much sought after used Chrysler car.
Arguably the world's first ever hatchback, the Chrysler Town & Country, first rolled off the production lines in 1941. It was so popular it continued in production until 1984. In the 1950s Chrysler sales boomed in the buoyant American economy. The company continued to introduce new style and innovation, including the Hemi-head V8 engine, air-cooled brakes and a first for the motor industry, power steering. During the 1960s Chrysler enlisted Elwood Engel who went on to design the Chrysler Turbine in 1963.
With car sales struggling in the 1970s Chrysler launched the Cordoba and following the industry revival of the '80s, the company rolled out its first convertible, the LeBaron. The 1990s saw Chrysler introduce a new level of luxury into its revived Town & Country, making the model arguably its greatest achievement as it took its concept for innovation into the new century.