1917 REO Model M Seven-Passenger Touring
Chassis no. 20687
Engine no. 20687
307ci F-head inline-six engine
Single Rayfield Carburetor
45bhp at 1,800rpm
3-speed manual transmission
4-wheel Semielliptical leaf spring suspension
Rear wheel mechanical drum brakes
-Three owners from new
-A long term East Coast and Greenwich, CT car
-In the garage of the same owner since 1966
-Subject of a thorough and correct restoration
-Fantastic power and size for the money
The Model M
Ransom E. Olds made his initial mark on the motoring world when he started Oldsmobile at the turn of the 19th Century but by 1903, disagreements between Olds and the principals of his namesake company resulted in his January 1904 departure "for certain reasons". In less than a year, Olds was back on his feet with a new companyReo.
Quickly finding footing in the market, Reo established itself and by 1907 was the third largest automaker in the U.S. behind Ford and GM. With competition heating up in the six-cylinder market, Reo introduced the Model M in 1917 to compete against the likes of Chalmers and Buick. Well proportioned with a 126" wheelbasea length not to be again replicated by Reo until the 1929 Flying Cloudand powered by a large, throaty F-head straight six generating a hearty 45 horsepower. In size and power, nothing could beat the Model M for anywhere near its $1,550 list price.
The Motorcar Offered
The Reo Model-M 7-Passenger Touring offered here is likely one of the nicest examples extant. It was delivered new in upstate New York and kept by its original owner for 43 years until it was sold to Horace P. Abbott of Old Greenwich, Connecticut in 1960. An enthusiastic owner and then-neighbor of the current vendor as well as a daily commuter to New York City, he would drive the old Reo to the train station, along with other regular uses, making it a fixture of the neighborhood. It was not long before the current vendor began inquiring about whether Mr Abbott would part with the car. Initially reluctant, it was finally acquired by present keeper in 1966. After 27 years of enjoyment, the Reo was sent to Roger "Skip" Lathrop in Maine for a complete and correct restoration, which was completed two years later in 1995.
Finished in rich dark green and black fenders with diamond tufted black leather seats, the big tourer is topped with an Old Bill mascot astride its radiator recalling the WWI-era. Having spent most of its life in Greenwich, it along with the vendor more recently moved to Cape Cod. Thoroughly enjoyed by the vendor's children, and now their grandchildren, they've never missed a parade, pumpkin patch party or an opportunity to drive for ice cream in the summer! Still in lovely shape, its nearly twenty year old restoration has been very well maintained and shows beautifully.
Then, as now, the Model M presents as a fabulous car for the money, offering more power and space than just about anything else in the price range. Whether Sunday drives, or possibly crossing the passes of the High Sierras in the winter as was done in period to prove the Model M's performance, are your thing this beautiful Reo will gladly take on the task!
- Please note that the correct chassis number for this vehicle is 20687