1924 Dodge Special Sports Touring; 4-door
Owner: Bernie and Janice Taulborg Collection
Original cost: $1,055.00 ($15,036 in 2018 dollars)
Number made: 193,861 (all models, calendar year total)
Engine, etc.: 4 cyl. 212 cid; 35 hp; 3-speed sliding floor shift controls;116 in. wheelbase; 2,510 lbs.
The 1924 Dodge models were introduced at the New York Automobile show in January, 1924. There were three models: the Standard, the Special, and the Custom.
Major appearance updates this year included a taller radiator, higher hood line, and drum headlights. The suspension was changed from ¾ elliptic springs to semi-elliptic. The transmission was a three-speed selective and there were mechanical brakes on two wheels. The wheelbase was longer, height was lower, and a rear brake light was standard.
“Special” models featured deluxe equipment such as nickel-plated radiators, bumpers, windshield wipers, and bright metal running board step plates. They were produced from 1923 – 1925.
Dodge was America’s 6th bestselling car in 1923.
The Dodge brothers, John and Horace, incorporated Dodge in 1914 after many years of supplying Ford with engines and assemblies. More than 22,000 applications for dealer contracts swamped their offices, even before anyone knew what kind of car would be built or its price. The company’s capitalization in 1914 was $5 million in common stock and ten years later, the company was worth $166 million.
Dodge Brothers cars were ranked at second place for U. S. sales in 1916.
Both Dodge brothers died unexpectedly in 1920 and the company passed into the hands of the brothers’ widows who promoted Frederick Haynes to the presidency.
In July 1923, Dodge Brothers made its most radical styling change to date. Wheelbase was extended to 116”, louvers were placed on the hood, and the entire car was given a lower appearance. Automatic windshield wipers were added. Roy Chapman Andrews took three Dodges on a 10,000-mile fossil-hunting expedition into China and Inner Mongolia.
Dodge gradually lost its ranking as the third best-selling car manufacturer during the 1920s.
Stagnation in development became apparent and Dodge dropped to fifth place in the industry in 1925.
The company was sold to Dillon, Read & Co. in 1925; it was sold to Chrysler in 1928.
Sources: Standard Catalog of American Cars, 1805 -1942. Beverly Rae Kimes, et al. 3rd ed. Krause Publications, 1996.