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Today January 11, 1913

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On Jan. 11, 1913, the first enclosed sedan-type automobile, a Hudson, went on display at the 13th National Automobile Show in New York.

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Posted · Report post

According to Wikipedia, the first closed car (for at least four persons), which used the word sedan was the 1911 Speedwell sedan, which was manufactured by the Speedwell Motor Co in Dayton, Ohio. And there were others even before that, but they weren't specifically called "sedan."

??? :blink:

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Posted · Report post

Weren't horse drawn Buggies/Coaches called sedans before cars?

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Weren't horse drawn Buggies/Coaches called sedans before cars?

Not really. Horse drawn carriages used names based on such as Greek mythology (Phaeton, for example), or the name of a famous person for whom one was built (Victoria), or a particular city or town (Landau), or it's particular use (Hansom Cab or "Cab"). The most plentiful closed 4-place carriage style was the "coach" of course, but those had two bench seats, facing each other (the passengers in the front seat rode facing to the rear).

The oldest reference to the term "Sedan" as used in conveying people that I can find is the "Sedan Chair" which held one or two passengers, but was not a wheeled vehicle at all, but rather a closed "box" with a door on either side, suspended between two wooden poles, and was carried by 4 strong men. I believe the Sedan Chair originated in Italy, possibly Naples. One of the framers of the US Constitution used one during the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, one Benjamin Franklin, who was, by that time over 80 years old.

True sedans, as the name refers to automobiles, were almost impossible to build in the early days of the auto industry, due to the inability of manufacturers to make truly stiff frames, back in the days of open channel frame rails and riveted, rather than welded joints between frame rails and crossmembers. In addition, car bodies were wooden in nature, having only sheet metal skins attached to wooden framework. This meant a lot of flexibility in both frame and body structures; in other words, the entire car literally twisted as it went over rough and rutted roads, even city streets. As a result, the first closed car bodies produced were either 2-place coupes or the more opulent chauffeur-driven "touring cars" (not the open variety) which had a closed compartment for passengers in the rear, with an open driver's seat, often with a roof canopy over the driver, which was not attached to any windshield. That, along with very heavy wood construction, allowed such bodies to be carried on those early, very flexible chassis without the body simply being twisted apart.

In the "teen" years, a couple of things happened: Pierce Arrow developed a body shell made from thin aluminum castings, which while not all that popular, did point toward the possibilities of body shells with torsional resistance. In 1915, Edward Budd (the same Budd whose company made truck wheels, bodies for Ford Motor Company, and of course, stainless steel streamlined railroad passenger cars later on) developed the first all steel car bodies, and very quickly was supplying body shells to Dodge Brothers. Also, in 1915, Ford introduced the first mass-produced sedan, the so-called "Center Door", which was a true sedan body, but with door access in the middle of the body side only (you entered the car from those doors, and crawled between the two, narrow individual front seats to sit down, there being a full-width bench seat in back). However, even that body shell had it's problems with torsional rigidity, and being an extremely tall body, the car was noticeably top-heavy. In the early20's, Essex, a make produced by Hudson, pioneered the concept of the modern 2dr sedan, a body style they termed the "Coach". It was a very sturdy car, due to a fairly heavy frame, and a substantial wooden body framing structure, and began the trend to closed cars for good.

Ford, Chevrolet, Dodge and others followed suit, the first Model T 4dr sedan being introduced in 1924, Chevrolet about the same time. But, all those early 4drs tended to creak loudly when traversing seriously uneven road surfaces. In 1929, the Cord L-29 introduced a true chassis stiffener, the X-Member, which pretty much ended the serious flexibility of channel steel rail frames, and generations of sturdy, reliable, quiet sedan bodies have followed ever since, aided of course by unibody technology.

Art

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Posted · Report post

On Jan. 11, 1913, the first enclosed sedan-type automobile, a Hudson, went on display at the 13th National Automobile Show in New York.

The invention of the Drive-In Theater was just waiting for this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Snack Stand will close in 10 minutes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

CadillacPat

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Posted · Report post

I love Art's history lessons. It is good that this knowledge does not get lost in this era of electric jellybeans.

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Yeah... Ya gotta LOVE Art's "short and to the point answers"...... :):rolleyes: I'm NOT picking on you Art, honest I'm not. You are our walking encyclopedia of all things Auto related.

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If someone asked Art what his name was, do you think he could answer in less than three paragraphs?

:lol:

(just kidding, Art. I also like your history lessons).

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Posted · Report post

These types of transports (sedan chairs) developed independantly in the East and The West. However, the earliest mention of that type of vehicle was in India, known as palanquin or from the Hindi, Palkhi in 250 BCE.

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Posted · Report post

hrm, a fascinating response from Art, I really like these kinds of tidbits even if they are closer to a mound than a tidbit.

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