In 1908 the Willys-Overland Company of Toledo, Ohio, was founded when Elmira, New York auto dealer, John North Willys, bought into the Overland Company of Indianapolis to save it from bankruptcy. Overland and its progenitor, Standard Wheel Company of Terre Haute, Indiana, had been making cars since 1903 under a variety of names.
Around 1913 the company was well into the mainstream of auto manufacturing with the modestly priced Overland when it purchased the Edwards Motor Company of Long Island, New York and moved production of their car to Elyria, Ohio, renaming it Willys-Knight. Production moved to Toledo in 1915. Willys-Overland produced cars under the Willys-Knight brand from 1914 to 1933.
Most innovative was the double-sleeve engine, patented by Charles Knight, which powered these cars, both four- and six-cylinder models. Rather than conventional valves the design featured two close-fitting sleeves around each piston that moved up and down opening and closing intake and exhaust ports. It was an exceptionally smooth engine and as carbon built up tolerances tightened for even more efficiency and less oil consumption.
In 1926 the Willys-Knight Model 66 featured a 66-horsepower, 237 cubic-inch double-sleeve engine and sold for $1,845.
This car was the prototype for Willys-Overland with body by Robbins and Buffalo wire wheels. It came with an optional top and side curtains for the rumble seat.
Total production of all body styles - Roadster, Touring, 5-passenger Touring, Sedan, 7-passenger Sedan, Cabriolet and Brougham - were 28,614.