Riker Electric 1898

Words: Pebble Beach Concours, DragOne Classic Motorcars. (Thanks to racing historian and automobile collector Tom Beeler for calling this to our attention)

A car with outstanding significance and provenance. This car was Andrew Rikers personal car which he used in multiple pioneering races including; the Motor carriage exhibition at the Mechanics Fair in Charles River Park in Boston, Massachusetts in 1898 where it won 1st place, the Exposition Universalle Internationale in Paris, France in 1900 where it won 1st place, the first New York Racing Association Race, Aquidneck Park, Newport, Rhode Island  where it won 1st in the Qualifying race, 3rd in the Championship Race and the first ever 50 mile race in the U.S. sanctioned by AAA Long Island, New York in 1900 where it won 1st place.

After retiring the car from racing Mr. Riker used this car as his daily transportation for a short time and after selling his company and becoming head engineer at Locomobile, this car was used as daily transportation by his wife, Edith, for many years. In 1929 Andrew and Edith donated all of the remaining 7 Riker cars, including this car, to the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan where it would remain until 1983, in untouched original condition, when it was deaccessioned and sold back to the Andrew Rikers daughter-in-law. She enlisted us to take care of the car for her and before her passing sold the car to us in 1987. We have cherished it ever since. It is still in all original condition, still retaining Mr. Rikers original leather license plate and his mongram on the sides of the seat. This is one of the greatest electric cars in the world! 

Andrew Riker was a significant and brilliant engineer who was a contemporary and friend of Henry Ford and Thomas Edison. He is most well known for being one of the founders of the Society of Automotive Engineers (S.A.E.) and its first President where Henry Ford was his vice president. He then became the head engineer at Locomobile where he was responsible for pushing them from steam to the internal combustion engine and was responsible for their successful racing program winning them the 1908 Vanderbilt Cup with his design of the famous race car "Old 16." 


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