Lot 369

Hershey 2019

1903 Dyke No. 1 Gasoline Runabout


$60,500 USD | Sold

United States | Hershey, Pennsylvania



Registered No.
  • One of three examples believed extant
  • Created by America’s pioneering automotive aftermarket impresario
  • Formerly of the Harrah Collection; current ownership of 34 years
  • Ideal for event presentation or on low-speed antique touring events
  • Engine rebuilt by a Brass Era specialist in 2005
  • A rare and correctly presented example
Addendum: Please note that this title is in transit.

In addition to creating and selling various “kit cars” between 1898 and 1904, A.L. Dyke founded America’s first parts business and published a line of repair catalogues that were predecessors of today’s Chilton manuals. This extraordinary example of Dyke’s No. 1 Outfit gasoline runabout is believed to be one of three surviving cars remaining extant.

At one point owned and restored by William Harrah’s National Auto Museum, the Dyke was purchased from a Harrah’s sale in 1985 by the current owner, a member of the Horseless Carriage Club. The consignor immediately conducted a cosmetic restoration, repainting the coachwork in red and reupholstering the seats with black leather. Several corrections were undertaken from the prior restoration, such as installing a proper Phare Solar headlamp and side lamps, and an Amish wheel maker was commissioned to craft new correct wheel spokes.

During the late 1990s, some mechanical freshening was undertaken, including an upgrade of the drive sprocket for improved top speed. The consignor then used the runabout in a handful of small events, touring 17-Mile Drive in Pebble Beach and participating in two tours held by the 1 and 2 Cylinder Registry.

Around 2005 the consignor entrusted a complete rebuild of the original engine to the esteemed Scott Henningsen, a specialist in Brass Era motors. Mr. Henningsen rebuilt the engine with a newly machined aluminum piston and insert bearings, and it is now reportedly capable of propelling the Dyke to 30 mph (nearly double its original top speed of 18 mph). The runabout was later featured on the cover of the January/February 2010 issue of Horseless Carriage Gazette, a copy of which is on file.

Displayed at the St. Louis Transportation Museum in 2016, this ultra-rare Dyke is accompanied by a Harrah’s Collection coffee table book and a Dyke parts catalogue. It is the most complete of three remaining examples and offers antique motor car enthusiasts a truly unique opportunity.