Lozier Automobiles at the 2020 Amelia Island Concours d'EleganceBy: Dan Vaughan
It is believed that over 3,500 Lozier automobiles were built during the company's existence, lasting from 1900 until 1915, with 35 complete cars and 5 chassis remaining. 20-percent of the remaining complete cars were brought to this year's Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance, with the finest example at the event judged to be the 1908 Lozier 7 Passenger Touring owned by Jim Grundy of Doylestown, PA.
The Lozier company produced top-of-the-line luxury vehicles and for a time were the most expensive cars produced in America. The company's advertisement stated that 'The Lozier Sells at a Higher Average Price Than Any Other Car in the World,' 'the Choice of Men Who Know,' 'Legitimately High Priced,' and 'No motor car in America or Europe can dispute the right of the Lozier to its title 'Champion of the World.''
The Lozier legacy began in the 1880s when Henry Lozier Sr. brokered and manufactured high-quality sewing machines. Next came a successful bicycle company in Plattsburgh, N.Y. which was sold in 1899 for approximately $4 million dollars. Then came motorcars, which were produced in Plattsburgh before relocating to Detroit in 1910. From the beginning, Lozier's were exceptionally well-engineered automobiles built from the finest materials available. They made extensive use of ball bearings in place of plain bearings and bushings for less friction and extended life.
By 1910, the Lozier's speed and endurance led to more 24-hour endurance speed records than any other manufacturer. They were the 1911 AAA National Champions and were one of the favorites to win the inaugural 1911 Indy 500. They came in second, and controversy remains today about whether Lozier actually won the race. The racetrack owner, Carl Fisher, had all records and film be destroyed after the hometown hero, Ray Harroun, was declared the winner with the Marmon Wasp. Harroun had completed the 200 laps in six hours, 42 minutes and 8 seconds. The Lozier driver, Ralph Mulford, had a time of six hours, 43 minutes and 51 seconds. Lozier filed a protest stating Mulford's time was for 502.5 miles, an error they contested was caused after one of the cars had crashed into the pits, seriously compromising the timing and scoring of the event. After an all-night decision session, it was announced the following morning that Harroun had won the race. Public protests followed, forcing officials to double-check their results. Since the timing and scoring system had broken down during the race, there was nothing to check and no records to back any claims. The hometown car and driver were declared the winners for the third and final official results.
Lozier was known as one of the fastest and most dominant in the States. In 1911, Fiat challenged Lozier to a head-to-head 100-mile race at the Los Angeles Motordrome. The 90 horsepower Fiat was driven by Ralph DePalma, and the stock four-cylinder Lozier was driven by 'Terrible' Teddy Tetzlaff. At the end of the 24 hours, the Lozier had won by more than six laps, setting a new track record, and broke four world records for speed.
The Lozier's final raced was in November of 1911, at the Vanderbilt Cup Run, which it won, with Mulford driving. In second place was a Mercedes driven by DePalma.
The new high-tech Detroit plant was the start of the company's demise. With more capacity it was expected that production numbers would increase considerably. However, the economic conditions at the time and the astronomic price tag of the Lozier meant that sales did not increase as expected. New financial investors took control of the company and Harry Lozier was soon forced out. The Lozier legacy management team left and formed the Chandler Motor Co. By 1916, the Lozier Motor company was out of business.
The Lozier Automobiles at the 2020 Amelia Island Concours Include:
- 1908 Lozier Seven-Passenger Touring owned by Jim Grundy of Doylestown, PA
- 1908 Lozier H owned by Jeff and Angie Chattin of Canton, GA
- 1909 Lozier Model J Briarcliff owned by Corky and Theresa Coker of Chattanooga, TN
- 1911 Lozier Four-cylinder Indy Racer owned by Corky and Theresa Coker
- 1910 Lozier Briarcliff owned by the Gilmore Car Museum of Hickory Corners, MI
- 1912 Lozier Briarcliff owned by Billy Walsh of Magnolia, NJ
- 1914 Lozier Model 84 Roadster owned by the Lozier Collection, Redmond, WA