1931 Peerless V16

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There is almost no information on the internet or youtube about the 1931 Peerless V16. It is a magnificent automobile and unfortunately for me, it was not put into production.
By the onset of the Great Depression, automobile manufacturers in America and around the world, in terms of luxury, power and value, were at their peak. At this time, Cadillac, long since owned by GM, released its V16. At the same time, the largely forgotten, independent Marmon company also released its own, sixteen-cylinder car. This was appogee, even Packard had never produced cars with V16 engines, limiting themselves to twelve cylinders.

At this time, Peerless, still considered one of America’s most prestigious automakers 10-15 years earlier, sought to regain lost ground. The 1931 Peerless V16 was to be America’s third sixteen-cylinder automobile. Unfortunately, this completed prototype did not go into production due to the company’s financial problems. By the time the V16 was built, Peerless had fallen to 30th place in the number of cars assembled in the United States. Peerless itself was bought by a brewery company and the company did not produce any more cars.

The prototype was assembled in Cleveland, Ohio. The only, assembled example is on display at the Crawford Auto – Aviation Museum. This car has less than 5,000 miles and has not undergone any restoration. It is a car in pristine condition.

Exterior and photos.

Of course the body of this Peerless is based on a frame, but just imagine that the body panels here are aluminum! The bodywork was created at Murphy Bode Co. The exterior of the car was designed by Frank Hershey, who was only 22 years old at the time.

Note that both the front and rear doors open counterclockwise. The front doors are mounted on four hinges – each, and the rear door is mounted on three. Note that the top of the doors go all the way to the roof – this was an unusual decision. I also want to draw your attention that the radiator is placed behind the hood, behind the radiator grille, and not installed in the front part of the engine compartment, – as it was usual at that time.
Unlike the Cadillac, the Peerless had a sloping windshield, which should have a positive effect on top speed and economy.

Engine and specifications of the 1931 Peerless V16.

Like the Marmon, the Peerless engine block was constructed of aluminum. With a displacement of 7.6 liters and a maximum power output of 173 hp, the Peerless engine was slightly superior to the Cadillac and Peerless. The 1931 Peerless V16 had a top speed of 160 kilometers per hour.
Mechanically actuated drum brakes were installed on both axles. Suspension on both axles is leaf spring.

I’m sorry that this Peerless car didn’t go into production. As everyone knows today, of the 16-cylinder cars of the ’30s, only the Cadillac was successful. Largely simply because it was backed by a giant car company. Whereas Marmon and Peerless were independent companies with limited budgets.

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