The Big Car Database


1916 Apperson Jack Rabbit Touring Car
Apperson Chummy Roadster
1920 Apperson advertisement

The Apperson was a brand of American automobile manufactured from 1901 to 1926 in Kokomo, Indiana.

Company history

The company was founded by the brothers Edgar and Elmer Apperson shortly after they left Haynes-Apperson; for a time they continued to use a FR layoutont-mounted flat-twin engine, following it with a horizontal four.

Apperson cars

By 1904, Apperson offered vertical fours in two models. The 1904 Apperson Touring Car was a touring car model. Equipped with a tonneau, it could seat 6 passengers and sold for US$6000. The vertical-mounted straight-4, situated at the front of the car, produced 40 hp (29.8 kW). A 4-speed transmission was fitted. The steel-framed car weighed 2800 lb (1270 kg). The wheel base was 96 inches. The Apperson offered electric lights, a novelty for the time, and used a modern cellular radiator. The 25 hp (18.6 kW) version weighed 1800 lb (816 kg) and sold for US$3500.

In 1906 the company catalogued a 95 hp (71 kW) four at $10,500. The next year the first of the famed Jackrabbit speedsters rolled off the line; this was a 60 hp (45 kW) that sold for $5000. For a time, the entire range was known as the "Jack Rabbit" - in 1913 a 32.4 hp (24 kW) four and a 33.7 hp (25 kW) six were listed, and a 33.8 hp (25 kW) 90-degree V-8 of 5.5 L (5502 cc/335 in3) followed in 1914.

Roadplane models introduced

In 1916 the company announced production of the "Roadplane" six and eights. The term "Roadplane" did not refer to a specific model but was a marketing concept devised by Elmer Apperson that was applied to the "Chummy Roadster" and the "Touring" car. Elmer took the unusual step of patenting the "Chummy Roadster" design .

The "Silver-Apperson", designed by Conover T. Silver, was launched in 1917; the model was known as the "Anniversary" after 1919. A sedan proprietary with six cylinders of 3.2 L (3243 cc/197 in3) appeared in 1923, and a Lycoming eight-cylinder was offered beginning in 1924.

Final production

By now, Apperson and Haynes were both losing sales; a rumored remarriage came to naught, and Apperson folded for good despite the introduction of four-wheel brakes on the 1926 models.

Apperson production models

  • Apperson Six Sport Sedan