Friday, August 30, 2013
Disagreements with his financial backers led Hupp to leave the company. By 1912 he was off on a new venture with an all electric car. A few years later he was one of two companies in the world using all steel bodies.
Hupp Motor Company continued to grow and thrive after its founder left. By 1924 Hupp was directly competing against companies like Ford and Chevy. By 1928 Hupp was turning out 65,000 cars per year. This increase in sales and production caused Hupp to buy up another company, Chandler-Cleveland Motors. The purchase was mostly for the larger factory facilities. But with larger facilities came larger bills and more debt.
The Depression began taking its toll on sales in 1930. Add this to the fact that while Hupp had established its brand with affordable small and mid-sized cars, they had, since 1925, begun making larger more expensive cars. In this way they were alienating the very people who had been buying their cars. To offset this they began making a wide variety of models instead of just focusing on one small, manageable segment.
Even buying up the dies for the by now defunct Cord automobiles and planning to put out a luxury model didn't help. By 1940 the company had shuttered its factory.
The Hupmobile shown here is a 1931 Model 114 Series S. It is a four door sedan with a 228 cubic inch flathead six engine. Its 70 horse power could move the car down the road at 70 miles per hour. Unfortunately that wasn't fast enough for the Hupp Motor Company to outrun an economic downturn and poor management decisions.