2019 Shannons Melbourne Autumn Classic Auction

1930 Willys Overland Whippet Four 96A Tourer




Engine 134ci four-cylinder
Gearbox Three-speed Manual
Body Work Tourer
Colour Cream with brown fenders
Interior Brown
Trim Vinyl
Wheels Wooden-spoked
Brakes Drum/drum


This lot is no longer available

Introduced for the 1927 model year by Willys-Overland was an entirely new four-cylinder model, devised by John Willys to bring a European sensibility to the American market. The Whippet proved a commercial success in the early years - by 1928-29 it was the fourth most popular car in America - but the depression, internal upheavals and Ford's Model A brought a premature end in 1931. Powered by a 134-ci four-cylinder engine, the first Whippet was not only powerful - with 30hp on tap - but accelerated quicker than almost anything else on the road, thanks to the compact dimensions and light weight. With four-wheel braking (a first in the light car market segment), full pressure lubrication, balloon tyres as standard and an almost impossibly low price, it's not hard to see why the Whippet took America by storm. One of the chief reasons Willys developed the Whippet was to enhance exports, an area the company always took very seriously, and the model proved especially popular here in Australia, building on the success already enjoyed by Overland.