Matheson Touring

1907 Matheson 50HP Four Seven-Passenger Touring

Offered by Bonhams | Amelia Island, Florida | March 7, 2019

Photo – Bonhams

Frank and Charles Matheson hopped around a bit with their company, which they founded in 1903 – first in their hometown of Grand Rapids for a year, then to Holyoke, Massachusetts until 1905, then finally on to Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, where they built cars through 1912. After their luck ran out running their own firm, both men remained in the industry for decades to come.

In 1907, Matheson offered two different four-cylinder model lines. This “Big Four” is the larger of the two, and it is powered by a 50 horsepower, 8.0-liter inline-four and bad ass double chain drive. A shaft-driven six-cylinder car would arrive in 1909.

This car wears a large seven-passenger touring body, one of four styles offered in 1907 (though this body is a recreation constructed in the 1980s). The price when new would’ve been $5,500 – a fraction of the $250,000-$350,000 it is expected to bring later this week. Fun fact: William Randolph Hearst owned a pair of Mathesons. Only four Wilkes-Barre-built cars are known to exist today, and this is a pretty nice one. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $212,800.

Wolfe Touring Car

1907 Wolfe Four Five-Passenger Touring

Offered by Gooding & Company | Pebble Beach, California | August 18-19, 2017

Photo – Gooding & Company

Maurice Wolfe, a car dealer in Minneapolis, lent his name to this automobile, which was produced by the H.E. Wilcox Motor Car Company. The company was founded by Wolfe and brothers John F. and H.E. Wilcox. It built a few hundred cars between 1907 and 1909.

For the first two years of Wolfe production, their cars used a 24 horsepower straight-four engine from Continental. Only Five-Passenger Tourers were offered, though in 1909 you could get a four-passenger Roadster. When new, this car commanded a price of $1,800.

After 1909, the Wolfe became the Wilcox, which lasted through 1911. Maurice Wolfe moved to Indiana and built the Clark and Meteor automobiles. This car is one of about 30 built in 1907 (an additional ~170 cars would be built between 1908 and 1909). Restored in 2010, it is in running condition and is being sold to benefit a cancer research center in Seattle. It should sell for between $50,000-$70,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Update: Sold $49,500.

Cadillac Speedster

1914 Cadillac Four Speedster

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 8-9, 2015

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

Cadillac offered only one model line in 1914 – the Four, so named because of it’s mighty 6.0-liter straight-four engine that pumped out 40/50 horsepower. The Four was offered in a variety of body styles (seven to be exact), none of which was a Speedster

This car was sold new in Jersey City, New Jersey and has known history back to 1979 when its then-owner fitted this racy two-passenger Speedster body on it. The car looks quite sporting and rather imposing. The body is described as “Mercer-style,” but if I were to hazard a guess I would say that if this car were bearing down on you, you would notice it is quite a bit larger than a comparable Mercer. It needs a quick mechanical freshening to go motoring but is otherwise excellent. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $46,750.

Five Pre-1920 Cars from RM’s Hershey Sale

1911 Stanley Model 63 Toy Tonneau

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 8-9, 2015

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

It’s everyone’s favorite steam car – the Stanley steamer. The company’s 1911 range was robust, with the Model 63 being one of two 10 horsepower models offered. It was available only in this body style with seating for five.

It is powered by a two-cylinder steam engine making 10 horsepower. The 60-Series cars from Stanley were in production from 1910 through 1913. In all, 1,165 were built with 219 of those being the Toy Tonneau. Steam cars aren’t everyone’s thing as they take special dedication and know-how to operate. But those that love them really love them. This car sort of defines early steam motoring and it has been fully restored. Check out more info here.

Update: Sold $115,500.


1907 Procter Two-Passenger Runabout

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 8-9, 2015

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

Procter is a marque that doesn’t appear in most automotive history books (and if it does it is often misspelled as “Proctor”). That’s because the company was more of a person than an actual company. And Albert Procter only built one car. This one.

Originally fitted with a single-cylinder engine, the car was later upgraded to use 1.6-liter twin-cylinder engine from a 1903/4 Ford Model A. It produces eight horsepower. Procter built the car for himself, instead of purchasing another man’s product. He only ever wanted to build one car. So that’s what he did.

Procter’s daughter sold the car before WWII and the engine was stripped out of it. But the car survived and passed between collections before finally being given a new engine. It’s not road-worthy as it is all-original, but it could be made to run. Click here for more information.

Update: Sold $18,700.


1914 Cadillac Four Speedster

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 8-9, 2015

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

Cadillac offered only one model line in 1914 – the Four, so named because of it’s mighty 6.0-liter straight-four engine that pumped out 40/50 horsepower. The Four was offered in a variety of body styles (seven to be exact), none of which was a Speedster

This car was sold new in Jersey City, New Jersey and has known history back to 1979 when its then-owner fitted this racy two-passenger Speedster body on it. The car looks quite sporting and rather imposing. The body is described as “Mercer-style,” but if I were to hazard a guess I would say that if this car were bearing down on you, you would notice it is quite a bit larger than a comparable Mercer. It needs a quick mechanical freshening to go motoring but is otherwise excellent. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $46,750.


1910 Cameron Model 24 Open-Back Runabout

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 8-9, 2015

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

The Cameron was one of what has to be quite a limited number of automobile manufacturers to set up shop in Rhode Island. They operated there from 1902 through 1906 before moving to Massachusetts (before finally settling on Connecticut until they went out of business in 1920). The company was founded by the Everett and Forrest Cameron.

Early cars had twin-cylinder engines, but a large number of four-cylinder models would be offered – and even some sixes. This car is powered by a 2.9-liter straight-four making 24 horsepower. The Model 24 was only offered in this basic body style and only for one model year (which may have been 1911). This example is in great shape and is ready to go. Click here for more information.

Update: Sold $55,000.


1915 Studebaker Model SD-4 Touring

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 8-9, 2015

Photo - RM Sotheby's

Photo – RM Sotheby’s

Studebaker was one of America’s great companies. With roots back to the 1850s, the company adapted and lasted through 1967 when times just got too rough. But back in earlier, happier days, their products were sought-after by the masses. And that’s why I like this car so much. If you’ve ever seen footage shot in a big city, like New York, sometime around 1920, give or take, you may have noticed the abundance of automobiles swarming the streets. And they all look more or less the same from a distance. Quite a large number of them are probably Model T Fords. But then you have to realize that some of them are very rare cars today.

This Studebaker looks like it could’ve been used in an episode of Boardwalk Empire or something. It’s generic enough without being too generic. This was an everyday car. And that’s why it’s so interesting. The SD-4 was powered by a 3.2-liter straight-four making 30 horsepower. Studebaker’s four-cylinder model was renamed with every year, so the SD-4 was for 1915 only. It was available as a two-passenger Roadster or a this four-passenger Touring. You know this was somebody’s family sedan – 100 years ago. Think of the stories… and check out more here from RM.

Update: Sold $16,500.

Windhoff Four

1928 Windhoff 764cc Four

Offered by Bonhams | Stafford, U.K. | April 29, 2012

Windhoff, which began producing motorcycles in Berlin in 1924, introduced their well-engineering Four in 1927. This bike featured a number of innovations that led to it being among the most expensive motorcycles of its day – not great news considering Germany’s pre-war economic woes. With an economy in ruins, the Windhoff Four was not long for this world. Company founder Hans Windhoff pulled the plug on the Four and returned to making light twins. This was not successful either and the firm folded in 1933.

The 764cc four-cylinder makes 22 horsepower. It’s so well engineered that I want to refer to it as the “German Brough Superior.” It’s certainly priced like it.

This particular motorcycle was sold at a Bonhams auction in 2008 for £100,500. The estimate for the current sale is £100,000-£130,000 or $160,000-$210,000. Not cheap, but you aren’t likely to find another one. For more information, click here and to see the entire lot list, click here.

Update: Did not sell.