The Stutz name has always been synonymous with automotive performance. By the mid-1920's, the legacy of Harry C. Stutz was legendary. After establishing his automotive credentials with the creation of the 1905 American Underslung, Stutz had idea to build a motorcar bearing his own name. Unveiling his newest vehicle at the Indianapolis 500 No, Harry entered the new ‘Stutz' into the race rather than just displaying it in the infield. The Stutz finished eleventh after 442 minutes had elapsed. Unfortunately, his vehicle didn't make it in the top tenth that Stutz had hoped, he was quick to advertise this new vehicle as ‘The Car That Made Good in a Day'. The Stutz Motor Car Company was created from the vision of Harry Stutz and his dream to produce a production version of his Indianapolis racecar. Due to the purchase of numerous company shares by stock market speculator Ryan who cared more about making money, then quality vehicles, Stutz eventually cut his ties before Ryan went bankrupt. Charles M. Schwab, the president of Bethlehem Steel at the time, was responsible for saving the Stutz Motor Car Company line. In the early twenties, Schwab had unsuccessfully tried to enter the family car market. Designed by Frederic Moskovics, the Model AA Vertical Eight was introduced in 1926. Responsible for returning the Stutz brand back into the luxury-performance field, Schwab Capturing some of the essence of previous Stutz automobiles, the new AA was in a league of its own. Able to sit lower on its large wheels than competitive cars, the vehicle had a specified Timken worm-drive axle that was combing with a double-drop frame. The Vertical Eight featured hydraulic brakes and ‘safety' glass that earned it the name ‘Safety Stutz'. The sedan offered a mid-range model that was more affordable for typical family of the 1920's.
Fitted with the newly designed Vertical 8 engine, it was a single overhead cam straight eight that displaced 287 cubic inches. With the help of ‘twin ignition' (two spark plugs per cylinder) the new mill delivered 92 horsepower. As luxury buyers heard good reports regarding the model AA's performance, along with its sleek looks, sales jumped to 5,000. Priced at over 3,000, in the beginning it had appeared that the investment would pay off. Schwab had invested much into the development of the V8, but unfortunately sales fell off drastically due to complaints about the Timken hydraulic brakes. The brakes were increasingly temperamental and unstable, though several modifications were made.
In 1927 the model was improved by increasing the horsepower to 95 and the engine displacements to 298 cubic inches, but it was too late. During the stock market crash of 1929, the shrinking demand for super-luxury vehicles had reached its end.By Jessica Donaldson
Prior to World War II, there were very few attempts at American built cars contesting the grueling 24 Hours of LeMans. In the late 1920s, Stutz made a serious effort and was nearly rewarded with the ultimate prize for their efforts. In 1928, they finished second behind a Bentley. This amazing finish proved to the world that America could make a car that could compete in the most intense endurance race and battle European makes. By Daniel Vaughan | Jul 2008
Stutz automobiles have always been known for their sporting qualities. The well-known Bearcat was one of the great early American sports cars, and was the principal rival of Mercer at the racetrack. In 1927, the Blackhawk Speedster continued the Stutz reputation as a fast and sporting car by winning the Stevens Trophy Cup in record time as well as the AAA Stock Car Championship. In the following year, on the beach at Daytona, it became America's fastest production car. This Model AA is powered by a 298 cubic-inch, straight-eight engine. Fed by dual Zenith carburetors, it develops 95 bhp. The centrally lubricated chassis of the AA featured an underslung worm drive, which allowed for the production of low and intoxicatingly sensuous bodies. This one-off Bohman & Schwartz body features teardrop fenders, a low split windshield, 17-inch drop-center wire wheels, and Ryan headlights. The original cost of this Speedster was $3,195, and it is the only one of its kind in existence today.
The first Black Hawk Speedsters appeared in the Stutz AA line for 1927 and featured lightweight bodies built by Robbins. They were recognized as the fastest American car of its time. Power was from a 298 cubic-inch, 95horsepower, overhead camshaft engine that utilized a twin-ignition system with dual spark plugs for each cylinder. After twenty-four years in production, production came to a close in 1935 due to the Great Depression. By Daniel Vaughan | Aug 2010
Sold for $429,000 at 2015 RM Sotheby's : Amelia Island. This is a Stutz Vertical Eight Custom Black Hawk Two-Passenger Speedster by Robbins. The known ownership history of this car begins in 1947, when it was in the care of Bruce Robbins, of Pasadena, California. At the time it was largely complete, including the original boattail bodywork, with the exception of the fenders. Correct fenders were modified from those taken from a Stutz touring car of this period. The missing windshield was recreated, with a borrowed original used as a pattern. The exterior was finished in red with black fenders. Mr. Robbins later sold his Stutz to Edward Fenton, of Los Angeles, and then in 1959 it came into the care of William F. Harrah, for Harrah's Automobile Collection in Reno, Nevada. When Mr. Harrah learned that the paint scheme was not original to the car, he commissioned his shop to perform a 'Gold Star' restoration. Work began around 1960 and was finished in January of 1963. During the work, it was discovered that the serial number plate on the dashboard was not correct and that a previous owner had welded into the chassis an incorrectly numbered cross-member from a 1928 Stutz. Harrahs then assigned the car chassis number AA-C18-86501, which is correct to the 1927 series and does not conflict with any other known Stutz.
The car remained on display in Harrah's Automobile Collection until 1985, when it was sold to the late Sam Vaughn, of Texas. After Mr. Vaughn's passing, the car went into the ownership of another collector, Herbie Livingston. The current owner purchased it from Mr. Livingston. The new owner commissioned a new restoration based on the original restoration file. After the work was completed it earned CCCA Premier status. It was also driven by the owner and his wife on a number of 1,000-mile CARavans.
This Boattail Speedster is powered by a 298.6 cubic-inch SOHC inline eight-cylinder engine developing 110 horsepower. There is a 3-speed manual transmission and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. By Daniel Vaughan | May 2015
There is no doubt that Harry Stutz was one of the great auto pioneers of the last century. One of his forays into the automobile manufacturing business was the design of the engine for the American Motor Car Company's Underslung model.The Stutz Company was based in Indianapolis, Indiana. Production began shortly after the turn of the century and continued until 1935. Originally founded as the Ideal Motor Car Company in 1911, Stutz decided to gain recognition by entering a car into the Indy 500. In their first attempt, the finished 11th and shortly thereafter, Stutz renamed the company to the Stutz Motor Car Company.Performance was the idea and the Stutz Bearcat was the result. Featuring a four cylinder engine with four valves per cylinder, the car had great torque and exceptional speed. Following in its footsteps was the Black Hawk Speedster, as seen here. This was the very first 'boat-tail' speedster produced by an American Auto Manufacturer.
With a powerful straight eight engine, the car was a delight to drive and extremely fast on the track. It was, as many would agree, America's fastest production car at the time. And, during the roaring 1920's, the rich and powerful wanted style and speed. The Black Hawk Speedster certainly gave them both!
Related Reading : Stutz Model 8 History
In 1876, Harry C. Stutz was born. He grew up on the family farm where he often helped repair their farm equipment. This led to a fascination with engines and in 1897 he built his first car soon after he began designing and creating engines. The Stutz Company, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, introduced its first production vehicle in 1911. The vehicle, after only five months of design and build, was.... Continue Reading >>
Related Reading : Stutz Model 8 History
The Stutz Series M coupe was introduced in 1929 and featured an auxiliary trunk, a rumble seat, and dual side-mount spare tires and wire wheels. Right above the front bumper are driving lights that turn in synchronization with the steering.Before the Series M was the introduction of the Stutz Vertical Eight in 1926, which is considered to be ‘the most European of the US auto designs of the.... Continue Reading >>
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