Marmon radiator emblem. (source: Apijunior)
Marmon was an automobile brand name manufactured by the Nordyke & Marmon Company of Indianapolis, Indiana, from 1902 through 1933. The company is notable as having introduced the rear-view mirror as well as pioneering both the V16 engine and the use of aluminum in auto manufacturing.
Marmon's parent company was founded in 1851 manufacturing flour grinding mill equipment, and branching out into other machinery through the late 19th century. Small limited production of experimental automobiles began in 1902, with an air-cooled V-twin engine. An air-cooled V4 followed the next year, with pioneering V6 and V8 engines tried over the next few years before more conventional straight engine designs were settled upon. Marmons soon gained a reputation as a reliable, speedy upscale car.
The Model 32 of 1909 spawned the Wasp, winner of the first Indianapolis 500 motor race. This car featured the world's first rear-view mirror.
The 1916 Model 34 used an aluminum straight-6 engine, and also used the material in the body and chassis to reduce overall weight to just 3295 lb (1495 kg). A Model 34 was driven coast to coast as a publicity stunt, beating Erwin "Cannonball" Baker's record to much fanfare.
New models were introduced for 1924, replacing the long-lived Model 34, but the company was facing financial trouble. The company introduced a sub-$1,000 straight-8 car in 1929, the Roosevelt, but the stock market crash of 1930 compounded the company's problems.
Howard Marmon had begun working on the world's first V16 engine in 1927, but was unable to complete the production Sixteen model until 1931. By that time, Cadillac had already introduced their V-16, designed by ex-Marmon engineer, Owen Nacker. Peerless, too, was developing a V16 with help from an ex-Marmon engineer, James Bohannon.
The Marmon Sixteen was produced for just three years, with 400 examples made. The engine displaced 491 in? (8.0 L) and produced 200 hp (149 kW). It was an all-aluminum design with steel cylinder liners and a 45? bank angle.
Marmon went out of business in 1933, the worst year of the Great Depression.
(text source: Wikipedia)
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