Hershey | Lot 177
1910 Hupmobile Model 20 Runabout
The Merrick Auto Museum Collection
$39,600 USD | Sold
| Hershey, Pennsylvania
10 October 2019
- Archetypal early Hupmobile
- Older restoration
- Cute as a button
Robert Craig Hupp was a veteran of the auto industry by the time he decided to build his own car. Having worked at Olds, Ford, and Regal, he began experimenting on his own, and by the beginning of November 1908, he had completed a two-seat runabout with a four-cylinder water-cooled engine. Introduced at the February 1909 Detroit Automobile Show, it was designated the Hupmobile Model 20. Priced at $750, it undersold the Model T Ford. Production began in March at the newly organized Hupp Motor Car Company.
First-year sales were impressive—1,618 cars—and more than tripled in 1910. Three additional body styles were added for 1911: a two-passenger torpedo, a four-passenger touring car, and a four-passenger coupe. Joined by a larger Model 32 in 1912, the Model 20 remained in production through 1913, by which time a long-wheelbase version was available.
Cheery and authentic, this Hupmobile Model 20 was purchased by the Merrick Auto Museum in 1993. Dark blue with white pinstriping, it has a black cape top and a brass-framed accessory windshield. It has brass acetylene E&J Auto Lamp headlamps; side lamps and taillamp are E&J brass oil-fueled items. A compact oval fuel tank nests between the body and the spare tire. The seat is upholstered in plain black leather. The cream wood-spoke artillery wheels have blue striping.
This is a car that can properly be called “cute.” It is so short that the running board is hardly a foot square.