1917 Standard Steel Model E

The 'touring car' dominated the American automobile from 1905 until the early 1920s. It is characterized by a long body style, collapsible canopy roof and an ability to carry up to seven passengers. Úntil the mid-teens, automobiles were considered to be 'fair weather vehicles.' The car's canopies leaked and side curtains were motorists' only defense against weather.

In 1913, Standard Steel Car Company of Pittsburgh built a $2 million factory north of Pittsburgh in Butler, Pennsylvania to begin manufacturing automobiles. The Standard was built in Butler, PA from 1914 to 1923 by the Standard Steel Car Company of Pittsburgh, a well-established builder of railroad cars. Recorded as the company's best year, 1917 saw production of about 2,500 vehicles.

In 1923 Standard ended production, and in 1930 the factory was re-purposed for production of the American Austin and American Bantam mini-cars. In 1917 the vast majority of automobiles were touring cars such as this Standard Model E.

Touring cars were eventually replaced wîth closed-sedan automobiles designed to protect passengers from the elements, marking a significant turning point in both automobile design and its history.

Source - Frick Car Museum
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