Mercedes-Benz 38/70 Seven-Passenger
Samuel Pomeroy Colt, nephew of the famous arms manufacturer, was born in Paterson, New Jersey in 1852. Called “Pom” by family and friends, he became aide-de-camp to Governor Henry Lippitt of Rhode Island and was given the honorary rank of “Colonel.” He founded the Industrial Trust Company, a commercial bank later part of New England’s Fleet Bank that eventually merged into the Bank of America.
Col. Colt also dabbled in politics, representing his home city of Bristol in the Rhode Island legislature. He was elected Rhode Island’s Attorney General in 1882 and ran unsuccessfully for Governor as a Republican in 1903. A progressive politician, he advocated for child labor laws and advanced the cause of property rights for women.
Without question one of the most outstanding aspects of this Mercedes is the simple fact that it remains one of the most powerful, mechanically impressive of all chain drive Brass Era Touring cars. The T-Head engine delivers over 70 horsepower, making it one of the largest motors of its time, not to mention rare, and in 1911 few cars could compare with the combination of power, speed and sophistication.
This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in August of 2010 at the Portola Hotel & Spa and Monterey Conference Center, Monterey, California.
38/70 hp, 9,852 cc inline T-head four-cylinder engine, four-speed manual transmission with double chain drive, solid front axle and live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and two-wheel mechanical brakes on transmission jackshaft and rear axle. Wheelbase: 138.7".
Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Darin Schnabel