1896 Duryea Runabout

Summary

Early automobile inventors tended to make one-of-a-kind vehicles. Charles and Frank Duryea had a different idea. In 1896, they established the Duryea Motor Wagon Company and built thirteen identical vehicles. Based on their second model that had recently won America's first automobile race, this car was user friendly. A single lever controlled steering, shifting, and accelerating. The Henry Ford owns the only known surviving 1896 Duryea.

Early automobile inventors tended to make one-of-a-kind vehicles. Charles and Frank Duryea had a different idea. In 1896, they established the Duryea Motor Wagon Company and built thirteen identical vehicles. Based on their second model that had recently won America's first automobile race, this car was user friendly. A single lever controlled steering, shifting, and accelerating. The Henry Ford owns the only known surviving 1896 Duryea.

Material

Wood (Plant material)
Metal
Leather
Brass (Alloy)

Color

Dark green
Black (Color)
Gray (Color)

Dimensions

Height: 59 in

Width: 56 in

Length: 94 in

Wheelbase: 60 in

Inscriptions

Brass plate on tiller: Built by the / Duryea Motor Wagon / Company / Springfield Mass. U.S.A. Plate below seat: PAT'D. JUNE 11 - 1895 / PAT'D. MAR, 31 - 1896 / Other Patents Pending

Specifications

Make & Model: 1896 Duryea runabout

Maker: Duryea Motor Wagon Company, Springfield, Massachusetts

Engine: inline-2, F-head valves, 138 cubic inches

Transmission: 3-speed manual

Height: 59 inches

Wheelbase: 60 inches

Width: 56 inches

Overall length: 94 inches

Weight: 700 pounds

Horsepower: 6

Pounds per horsepower: 116.7

Price: $1,500 (estimated)

Average 1896 wage: $411

Time you'd work to buy this car: about 3 years, 7 months

Connect 3

Discover curious connections between artifacts.

Learn More