Those of you who saw my birthday tribute to Imagineer George McGinnis will recall that his first job for Disney was to design transportation systems for Walt’s Progress City model. This model, which served as the grand finale for the original Carousel of Progress at Disneyland, became the template for Walt’s planned EPCOT city of the future in Florida.
McGinnis was hired by WED Enterprises based on the strength of his senior project at the Los Angeles Art Center School; it might be little surprise that Walt was fascinated with the project, a 200 MPH underground high speed train that would whisk commuters from New York City to Washington, D.C. and Boston. Walt himself showed up at the school to inspect McGinnis’s work (and to inspect the model train) – surely a daunting moment for a young art student.
McGinnis’s Progress City assignment wasn’t all glamorous trains, monorails or PeopleMovers, though. If something was going to move in the city of the future, he was tasked to design it. And so it was that we get the above rendering, for perhaps the sleekest and most futuristic golf cart ever created. How many Progress Citizens would take up golfing just for the chance to tool around the greens in one of these beauties?
George says that the design of this futuristic cart was based on Walt’s own Mercedes 280 SL, which could often be seen parked in front of the WED offices. My only question is, where do I buy one?