"Do you get into that car, or do you put it on?" This epitomized the public opinion of the American Austin from the outset.

When Herbert Austin arrived in the United States in 1929, the country neither had nor wanted a small car, but Austin was convinced it needed one. Butler, PA was chosen as the site for Austin’s American ventures, as it was the home of a skilled workforce, and more importantly, of the former Standard Steel Car Company facilities.

Early American Austins were built on an English Austin Seven chassis, and bodywork was provided by the Hayes Body Company, an internationally recognized designer of the time. Despite the market crash of 1929, production in Butler began in May of 1930 with a production quota of 100 cars per day in what was one of the newest, best-equipped factories of the day. In 1932 the company was saved from bankruptcy by sales wizard Roy Evans, who kept the company alive for four more years.

Specifications: 14.8 horsepower, 45.6 cubic inch, in-line four cylinder engine. Wheelbase 75 inches, weight 1130 pounds, top speed 55 mph.

Price new: $305.

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