1927 Pierce-Arrow Coupe, Model 80, 2-door
Owner: Bernie and Janice Taulborg Collection
Original cost: $3,695.00 ($63,029.06 in 2022)
Number made: 5,836 in 1927
Engine, etc.: 6 cyl.; 414 cu. in.; 70 hp; 130 in. wheelbase; 3,470 lbs.
Pierce-Arrow Company, Buffalo, NY, 1908 – 1938
The smaller L-head Series 80 Pierce-Arrow engine was introduced in 1924 and lasted until 1927.
Four-wheel brakes with vacuum-powered booster were available in 1926.
The Model 80 was aimed at a wide audience of buyers who could afford its less expensive price. It was priced from $2,400 – $4,000 less than the larger, more stately Series 36.
Before becoming one of the most prestigious automobile makers in the U. S., the George N. Pierce Company made a variety of household items including birdcages and ice boxes. By 1905, the company was producing some of the biggest and most expensive automobiles available.
The Glidden Trophy was first awarded in 1905 and won by Percy Pierce, driving a Great Arrow. The Glidden Tour was an endurance run with the most roadworthy car winning the trophy – which Percy Pierce did for the next four years.
The Pierce Company brought out its first six cylinder car in 1907. It had a 135 inch wheelbase, weighed over 4,000 lbs., and cost between $6,500.00 – 7,750.00. No doubt, it was aimed at a very wealthy market. These were good years for Pierce, with the reputation gained from the Glidden Tour and other awards, it was able to sell an entire year’s production before the year began.
The Pierce-Arrow Company was launched in 1908 and the Great Arrow cars were named Pierce-Arrow in 1909.
Its prestige continued to grow when President Taft ordered two Pierce-Arrows for the White House. He was the first president to use an automobile for official occasions. This tradition continued into the Roosevelt administration when the last Pierce-Arrows, 1935 models, were ordered by the White House.
More modern production methods allowed competitors to produce less expensive automobiles in later years and it became difficult for Pierce-Arrow to compete.
After a long history of producing luxury cars, the company went out of business in 1938.
Sources: Standard Catalog of American Cars, 1805 -1942. Beverly Rae Kimes, et al. 3rd ed. Krause Publications, 1996.
https://www.pierce-arrow.org/pierce-arrow-history/the-roaring-20s/ (Pierce Arrow Society: complete history, advertisements, etc.)
https://www.pierce-arrow.org/advertising-1921-1927/ (Advertising for Pierce Arrows)