Push to Start: A Brief History of Car Dashboards

Matthew Daddario
Jul 24, 2017 · 6 min read

The Invention: 1900s-1940s

From software to hardware it is always interesting to see what design iterations appear in the first few rounds of a revolutionary product.

Ford Model T — 1923

Maybach Zeppelin DS8 — 1932

The Style: 1950s-1980s

The 50s through the 80s were the golden era of artistic dashboard design. This was a time of ostentatious wheels, bright convertibles, and drive-in movies.

Chrysler Imperial — 1955

Plymouth Fury — 1965

Ford LTD — 1975

Chevrolet Corvette — 1980

The Commoditization: 1990s-Early 2000s

Oldsmobile Delta — 1993

Saturn L300–2004

The Car Computer: Late 2000s-Today

Tesla S Series — 2012

Future UI?!

What’s next?

Automobile manufacturers are continuing the trend of adjusting to the market and new opportunities created through technology.


Helm Experience & Design

Business and technology are one. Our design teams build, launch, and grow digital products with innovative companies.

Thanks to Nicholas Barone and Jonathan Gorczyca.

Matthew Daddario

Written by

Proud Buffalonian // UX Enthusiast // Table Tennis Aficionado // www.helmux.com

Helm Experience & Design

Business and technology are one. Our design teams build, launch, and grow digital products with innovative companies.