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Help identifying ca 1925 electric

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Hello all,

I found this website by chance doing a Google search. I am trying to identify my great grandmother's electric car from a family picture dated 1925 (perhaps earlier). I have no idea how old the car was at the time. My great grandmother, Hester L. Coontz (nee Hanrahan) was born about 1893 and we believe this was taken on 145th Street in Toledo, Ohio.

I've just purchased an all electric Nissan LEAF a few weeks ago, so I guess electrics run in my family! I wanted to post an introduction post to the www.mynissanleaf.com forum with the attached pic, but I wanted to be able to identify the make/model/year of the car first.

I would be much obliged for any information you could offer!

Cheers and Happy New Year,


San Diego, CA


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I received one guess offline that proposed that it is a 1920 Detroit Electric, but the picture he sent has many distinct differences. The wheels are very different, but I'm sure that's easy to swap out from year to year or model to model. But the hood in my pic is much longer and straight barrel shaped meeting the body at right angles with a trim ring instead of the "swoop" up. It looks as though this also has a door handle on the front opening towards the rear which none of the Detroit Electrics I found had. The fenders and running boards look VERY much like a Detroit and the lack of the carriage lamps on the body indicate the right time frame. I just wish I could find a definitive picture of that particular model. There was 1912 ad which claimed eight different models and I'm sure there are not extant pictures of each. Also this definitely has a steering wheel and all of DE's I saw had a tiller. I'll check out the Cadillac.

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After a great deal of research, we identified in 2007 a 1912 Detroit Electric with a 'conventional' bonnet on our Help Page 12 SVVS Web Assistance with Classic, Vintage and Veteran Cars . Now there is quite a lot on the web about them. None of my pictures had a car with a 'rounded' bonnet. Some Baker and Babcock car had roundish bonnets?


Vintman (UK)

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I think I figured out where I went wrong. My grandmother's reference to her mother driving her "electric" was a reference to the new electric starter in their Willys Overland Coupe (which first appeared in the 1914 model):


Though this ad places this car in 1911, I think it's actually a 1915 as it has electric start and still has side lights:

Antique Car

But, I think the vertical door handle and the lack of side lights pins it as a 1916 Opera Coupe (model 84B?):


Thanks for all your input and researching and sorry to have led you astray. It's nice to know what it is, as the Willys-Overland also has long family ties.



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