Stutz SV 16 Roadster
Perhaps no manufacturer put up a more gallant fight against the Great Depression than Stutz. Wounded by the departure of its namesake in 1919 and the stock manipulations of Alan Ryan in the twenties, Fred Moskovics persisted with the support of Bethlehem Steel magnate Charles Schwab, introducing in 1926 the Vertical Eight engine, mounted in a new double-drop chassis frame with worm gear rear axle and four-wheel hydraulic brakes. This new chassis allowed the Stutz to ride several inches lower, giving it a racier appearance. “The Safety Stutz,” it was called, with the “Vertical Eight” engine. These terms would be used for the remainder of the company’s life.
The Vertical Eight combined the inherent balance the inline eight-cylinder with two innovations – an overhead camshaft for better valve timing and Fred Moskovics’ adaptation of a Link-Belt silent chain to drive it. It was a daring move to achieve better volumetric efficiency while at the same time promoting Stutz’s reputation for silence and refinement. When the Great Depression hit Stutz responded to its competitors’ V12 and V16 engines not in kind but by taking advantage of prior innovation, renaming the powerplant SV16 (for “single valve sixteen”), and mounting a logo on a headlight tie bar that looked suspiciously like the one used on Cadillac’s new V16.
Stutz always believed in the value of racing to promote the brand, and consequently they were seen winning races across the country, winning many honors – including the AAA Stock Car National Championship in 1927.
This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in August 2009 at the Portola Hotel & Spa and Monterey Conference Center, Monterey, California.
113 hp, 322 cu. in. sixteen valve single overhead camshaft inline eight-cylinder engine, Warner four-speed manual transmission, solid axle suspension with semi-elliptical leaf springs and four-wheel servo-assisted hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 145"
Source: RM Auctions