1907 Wayne Model N Five-Passenger Touring
Sold For $184,250Inclusive of applicable buyer's fee.
RM | Auctions - HERSHEY 10 - 11 OCTOBER 2019 - The Complete Collection of Jack Dunning - Offered on Friday
- Offered from the collection of Jack Dunning
- A pioneering Detroit-built automobile of great rarity and excellent quality
- Meticulously restored to original condition, including correct colors and top
- 2005 AACA Cup winner
- Ideal for continued concours appearances or Brass touring
The Wayne Automobile Company was established by Byron F. “Barney” Everitt in Detroit (located in Wayne County, Michigan) in 1904. Like many of their ilk, the firm started out building relatively small horseless carriages, but grew increasingly ambitious. This led to such large and luxuriously appointed offerings as the 1907 Model N, featuring a 35 hp, 334 cu. in. four-cylinder engine, three-speed rear transaxle with sliding gears, and chain drive—relatively powerful and advanced specifications for the early Brass Era.
A year after the Model N’s introduction, Wayne merged with another early Motor City automaker, Northern, and the name vanished from the scene. Everitt soon and more famously joined with William Metzger and Walter Flanders to build the E-M-F.
Jack Dunning’s Model N is the only “big” Wayne remaining extant. Like many great Brass cars, it can trace its heritage to the renowned Barney Pollard collection in Detroit. Mr. Pollard had begun gathering early automobiles in his warehouses in the 1930s and over five decades assembled a vast collection of significant Brass cars. Late in his life, much of the collection was dispersed at auction, and the Wayne was acquired in 1974 by Glenn Baechler, an enthusiast from Wellesley, Ontario. Mr. Baechler had intended to restore the Wayne, but never got around to the work, and Mr. Dunning eventually acquired the car here at Hershey in 1999.
Upon inspection the unrestored car was found to be solid and remarkably intact and complete down to the wiring on the ignition; it probably had very low mileage, as inspection of the engine showed that the crankshaft had broken many decades ago. The body appeared black, but careful stripping and cleaning revealed that only the original varnish had darkened over time, and the original colors and pinstriping pattern were revealed and precisely duplicated.
Much of the restoration was completed by Glenn and Randy Hatcher of Ohio, with the engine rebuilt by the highly regarded Brian Joseph with a new crankshaft, turned out of solid billet, and insert bearings. The correct top was remade to the original designs by Amish craftsmen in Pennsylvania, and proper wooden wheels were crafted as well, with the end result being exactly as Wayne would have delivered the car in 1907. Only the addition of a very carefully concealed starter deviates from “stock.”
The result has been honored with multiple awards in AACA national competition, including one of the organization’s most prestigious awards, the AACA Cup in the Southeastern Division for 2005, resulting in a prominent feature in Antique Automobile magazine (Issue No. 2 2006). It was also featured in Automobile Quarterly (Vol. 48, No. 4). It remains one of the centerpieces of the Dunning Collection and a fascinating piece of early Detroit motoring history—a proper monument to the men who engineered it well over a century ago.