Lot 101

2018   |   Scottsdale Auctions 2018

1903 Oldsmobile Model R Curved Dash Runabout

SOLD $93,500


$60,000 - $80,000| Without Reserve



Car Highlights

Widely Regarded as the World’s First Mass-Produced Automobile
Authentically Presented with Oil Lamps and White Rubber Tires
New Period-Correct Folding Top
Listed in the Curved Dash Oldsmobile Club Registry for Several Decades
Eligible for the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run

Technical Specs

95.4 CID Single-Cylinder L-Head Engine
Single-Barrel, Gravity-Fed Carburetor
Estimated 4.5 HP
2-Speed Manual Planetary Transmission
Mechanical Rear Drum and Transmission Brakes
Front Solid Axle with Leaf Springs
Rear Live Axle with Leaf Springs

Saleroom Addendum

*Please note that this vehicle is titled 1902.

Register to Bid

The Oldsmobile Model R, affectionately known as the Curved Dash Olds, was the first automobile produced in significant quantity, reaching numbers in excess of 1,000 units annually. By the standards of its day, it was simple to operate and affordably priced at $650.

The known story of this example begins in 1973, when L.J. Ollig, a utility company owner in Phoenix, sold the Olds to Don Colee, a noted collector of early cars. Joe Dillon of Machinco Inc. in Phoenix completed a thorough mechanical and structural restoration. He also carefully retrofitted an electric starter to aid in easy operation, work that can easily be reversed, according to the consignor. The current owner, an enthusiast of brass and nickel cars, purchased this Oldsmobile around 2007 and kept it in Arizona until moving it to Southern California in 2017. He has continued to refine the authenticity of the vehicle with the installation of a period-correct oil lamps and a folding top with burgundy lining.

The matching serial numbers are stamped on the decompression pedal and also on the engine’s cylinder head, and the Olds sports the correct and less-common offset spoke wood rims with tubeless white rubber tires for a proper vintage look. This fascinating Oldsmobile is a well-sorted antique automobile that could be a candidate for the historic London to Brighton Veteran Car Run and would be a splendid showpiece in any collection.