In 1934 Edsel Ford, president of Ford Motor Company and son of Henry Ford, desired a sleek “Continental” car based on European styles. He asked Ford Motor Company’s styling chief Eugene “Bob” Gregorie to help design it. Gregorie sketched a few alternatives and built a model, which he tested in a small wind tunnel.
The bodywork followed aircraft practice, being light and very strong. Custom touches included a shapely alligator-style hood with louvered side panels, low-mounted headlamps molded into the body, an enclosed radiator with a concealed cap, a starter button on the instrument panel, no running boards, and long, low proportions. These features would not appear on Ford Motor Company cars for many years. Edsel Ford drove this vehicle as his personal speedster.