In Solo: A Star Wars Story, we see the Millennium Falcon for the first time when Han Solo was young, and when it wasn't just a hunk of flying trash. It was smoother, it had blue paint, and looked as good as new. But the most different part, other than the fact that Lando Calrissian owned it, was that the non-existent front section was... EXISTENT! Here's an example.
I made a model of this Millennium Falcon, and the description of the front section on the box was that it was an "escape pod."
I also know, according to this article, that the front part was "missing" from the beginning of Star Wars, so is there really an answer?