Pierce-Arrow Model 66 7-Passenger Touring
The Pierce-Arrow 66 is regarded as the ultimate American automobile of the first twenty years of the 20th century. The quality of design, construction and materials lavished upon Pierce-Arrows by the craftsmen in its Buffalo, New York factory was second to none, and the company built commercial success upon its high standards.
The 66 stood out even among Pierce-Arrow’s other high-quality models. Like all Pierce-Arrows since 1910, it was powered by an inline six-cylinder engine, but it was an engine of such size, power and torque that it stood alone as the mightiest automobile of the era. First displacing a massive 714 cubic inches, the Model 66 engine reached 825 cubic inches and is believed to have made well over 100 horsepower. Most importantly, its long stroke created the prodigious torque needed to propel its massive chassis and typically luxurious and regal coachwork.
Pierce-Arrow pioneered thin cast aluminum panel work in its bodies, a technique that proved much lighter and stronger than the wooden bodies or metal-paneled wooden frameworks used by competitors. The Model 66 evolved steadily from its introduction. Electric starting was added in 1914 and pressurized fuel delivery, using an engine-operated air pump to pressurize the fuel tank, in 1915. The final Model 66 Series 4 debuted in 1916 and continued in production through 1918. The Model 66 engine had dual ignition from a coil-and-battery system and a magneto, and the engine employed a number of aluminum parts. The fuel tank contained 36 gallons, something of a necessity with the 8.5-mile per gallon fuel consumption of the Model 66, which gave it a range of nearly 300 miles, an important consideration in the days when gas stations were few and far between.
This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in August of 2010 at the Portola Hotel & Spa and Monterey Conference Center, Monterey, California.
825 cu. in. inline six-cylinder engine, four-speed manual transmission, solid front axle and live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf spring suspension, and two-wheel mechanical drum brakes at the rear. Wheelbase: 147.5".
Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Darin Schnabel