Pierce-Arrow Society Feature Article
By 1911, the Pierce-Arrow reputation for quality and prestige was well established. The product line had stabilized in 1910 to three chassis, 36-UU, 48-SS, and 66-QQ. All cars now used six-cylinder engines with the cylinders cast in pairs. The 1911 models were virtually identical to the 1910 models with only a few minor changes. In fact, the Pierce-Arrow line introduced in 1910 would be a stable line-up that would change slowly for the next decade.
For 1911, the top of the line Pierce-Arrow was the 66-QQ. Priced upwards of $7200, the 66-QQ only found about 200 buyers in 1911. The 66-QQ used a six cylinder engine with a 5 1/2 inch bore by 5 1/2 inch stroke. The wheelbase of the 66-QQ Suburban and Landau was 134 1/2 inches.
The mid-sized Pierce-Arrow for 1911 was the 48-SS. With a price tag $1000 less than the 66-QQ, the 1911 48-SS found about 1000 buyers. The 48 horsepower six-cylinder engine had a bore of 4 1/2 inches and a stoke of 5 1/2 inches.
Starting at $4000 for the Runabout, the 36-UU was the "entry" level Pierce-Arrow. The 36-UU Runabout was mounted on a 119 inch wheelbase and had a 4 inch bore and 5 1/8 inch stroke.
The 1911 Pierce-Arrows were available in several body styles. Open cars included the Runabout and Four, Six, and Seven-Passenger Touring cars. The formal bodies included the Brougham, Landaulette, Suburban, and Landau. The Landau and Landaulette featured a "convertible" passenger compartment with a fixed roof over the chauffeur's compartment.
As the Pierce-Arrow automobiles started entering the "Golden Era", so did the Pierce-Arrow advertising. During this second decade of the century, Pierce-Arrow commissioned lavish artwork from some of the most prominent illustrators of the time. Most advertising of this era had no text at all, just a painting of the social elite using their Pierce-Arrow. Many of the ads features Pierce-Arrows in rural or exotic settings, where few people ventured on the poor roads of the time.
While the 1911 Pierce-Arrows are fairly rare, several have survived and frequently attend the Pierce-Arrow Society Annual Meet. To learn more about these great old automobiles, we invite you to JOIN the Pierce-Arrow Society.