Classic Speedsters: The Cars, The Times, And The Characters Who Drove Them


Ronald Sieber


12 Chapters, 12 Car Companies, 12 Famous Owners And a collection of speedsters that will inform and entertain!

Have you ever wondered when and how the hotrod movement started? Or speed and endurance events? Landspeed racing? Hillclimbing? Or anything involving power, speed, or just having some fun in an automobile? This book—Classic Speedsters—covers all of that, and much more.

Classic Speedsters: The Cars, The Times, and The Characters Who Drove Them chronicles the most significant vehicles ever to have traveled American roads and racetracks. Speedsters were the pizzazz cars of their era. Speedsters were owned by entertainers, captains of industry, the wealthy, and in some cases, the everyday guy or gal. They were often expensive, but they were always fast and sexy. Speedsters were America’s first sports cars.

Each chapter frames the birth and evolution of a company that produced a speedster model in its lineup and includes a biography of a famous owner of the period. This book traces the journey of the speedster concept across several time periods, from 1894 to 1970. It examines the speedster’s story among 12 automotive companies, 11 of which were American.

This is the first automotive book to study the speedster concept in depth. A broad swath of speedsters from 12 different manufacturers (actually—there are 13 companies in the book) are examined in order to distill the essence of this singular model.

The companies and the speedsters that they produced are framed within the context of their time to better understand how technology and market forces shaped the success and failure of these companies (and their cars). The people who were drawn to and purchased these vehicles—why did they? This too is examined and discussed.