Home » What’s The Most Beautiful Speedometer Of All Time? Autopian Asks

What’s The Most Beautiful Speedometer Of All Time? Autopian Asks

Bugatti Speedo Aa

The instrument cluster is a critical piece of equipment in every roadgoing vehicle, and a lot of the time you’ll find it full of basic dials or just an uninspired screen. But it doesn’t have to be that way. An instrument cluster and the speedometer within it can be works of mechanical art. What’s the most beautiful speedometer of all time?

The internet was abuzz yesterday with news about the Bugatti Tourbillon and its hilarious 1,775 horsepower. Admittedly, I wasn’t feeling Bugatti fever like everyone else. At first glance, the Tourbillon just seemed like any other Bugatti. That was until I took a look at the interior. The magnificent trim and the weird steering wheel drew me in at first. Then I saw the instrument cluster.

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

Did Bugatti need to make a cluster that looks like a fine mechanical watch? Of course not, but golly, I cannot stop looking at this thing in the topshot. I want it on my motorcycles and in my Smart Fortwos. This Autopian Asks is also inspired by a similar question being asked over at Opposite-Lock. I highly recommend joining Oppo if you like great car forums!

C4 Digidash

This question is hard for me to answer. On one hand, I’m a sucker for the digital gauges of the 1980s. There are lots of them out there, but I’ll highlight the cluster from the 1984 Chevrolet Corvette C4 above. A futuristic wedge needs a futuristic cluster to go with it.

But I wouldn’t call that cluster beautiful. Don’t worry, we’ll get to that in a brief moment. Another favorite cluster of mine is the one I installed in my 2012 Smart Fortwo. Yes, ragefaces are so old and out-of-date, but they were still a thing when I made the backing. How fast am I going? Obama!

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Mercedes Streeter

The answer to most beautiful is a toss-up for me. The first-generation Dodge Charger has quite possibly my favorite instrument cluster of all time. Okay, take a look at these things. They’re sitting in these futuristic, space-age pods:

1966 Dodge Charger 1966 Dodge Ch
Bring A Trailer seller
1966 Dodge Charger Img 7737 3 52
Bring a Trailer Seller

That’s cool all by itself, but these are electroluminescent gauges, so they have a fantastic pop when they light up I’m not much of a Charger woman, but I’d buy one just for that fantastic interior.

Second to that, I love the look of the instrument clusters and dashboards from pre-World War II cars. Just check out the cluster from a 1939 Packard Twelve:

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Park Place LTD

Alright, enough of what I like. Tell me what are the most beautiful instrument clusters of all time. Do you like ’em digital or old-school analog?

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18 days ago

Perhaps this may be cheating a tad, but I always remember the mid 90’s to mid 2000’s Yamaha Royal Star Venture as having one hell of a sexy speedometer. It had a retro style very reminiscent of cars from the 50’s.

18 days ago

A couple examples from cool minivans we never got over here:

first-gen Citroen Berlingo, where the dash was available in blue, red, or even green 😀

The third gen Renault Espace is also good:

Root Beer
Root Beer
18 days ago

I know I’m a few days late on this, but after seeing Torch’s writeup on it earlier this year, I dig the VW Type 1 gauge

James Mason
James Mason
18 days ago

Early 1960’s Chrysler speedometers followed the curvature of the steering column and were pretty sweet.

Last edited 18 days ago by James Mason
18 days ago

In the realm of affordable cars and beautiful dashboards, I submit the Lexus IS200 and Toyota Altezza Modellista. Chronograph style clusters that still look great.

Banana Stand Money
Banana Stand Money
18 days ago

In no particular order. Citroen CX “roller gauges“, anything from Spyker, the timeless McLaren F1 or Porsche/Singer gauges

20 days ago

Speaking of only for what my eyes have seen while being behind the wheel, which is virtually nothing high end other than looking through a window at a car show or the street, my thoughts always go back to the simplistic 1954 GMC pickup. Just look at this: https://www.rkmotors.com/vehicles/2014/1954-gmc-100-deluxe-1-2-ton-pickup

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