Runs But Needs Brakes: 1927 Elcar 8-80 Sedan

Elcar is an automobile not familiar to most. They were built by the Elkhart Carriage Company from 1915 until their demise in 1930 due to the depression. Thanks to Dominic Ortiz for finding this uncommon car listed on eBay. It runs and drives, but you might not want to drive it very far, as it has no brakes. It’s in Santa Teresa, New Mexico with asking price is $9,750. It was stored for years in Arizona.

It was found in a barn in Arizona. Hopefully, the dry climate has left the wood in good shape. There are several boxes of parts. It looks like restoration was started at some time.

This Elcar has an interesting dash. It’s in surprisingly good condition compared to the rest of the car.

The engine is likely a Continental straight eight. The engine is said to run well. The new fuel filter and line show the fuel system has had some attention.

Pictures I’ve seen of the back bumper show a very conventional bumper. What do you think those “things” are. If the wood is truly solid, this Elcar will be a great candidate for restoration. It will have to be a labor of love, of course as the restoration costs alone will be more than the car would sell for. I hope somehow this Elcar is saved in its original form.

Fast Finds


  1. F.A.G.

    Those “things” on the rear bumper are handles. This vehicles was used for a pulling race on “The battle of the network stars” in 1977. I think Lou Ferrigno pulled it 72′ in 10 seconds flat.

  2. grant

    Wow. Just wow.

    • Bun Ramey

      This car is actually located in El Paso, Texas—- “El Car”, in the local venacular, means “the car”. Trivial I know, but those rear bumpers distracted me, thanks.

  3. Fred W.

    Radiator grill looks quite Rolls-ish. Impossible to restore this right and come out ahead, but I hope someone gets it who will fix the old girl up enough to keep on keeping on.

    • Todd DeNio

      It went to a guy in North Carolina. He has some videos of it on his YouTube page. He goes by Jonathan W on YouTube

  4. Mark S

    I’d keep every thing from the dash forward and restore it. Then I’d build a boat tail body on it with a shortened windshield a convertible top. Fenders, running boards and chassie I’d also leave the same and restore. This would make it far more desirable then its current state, and way more fun to drive. There is no value to speek of here so why not turn it into a period speedster. JMHO.

  5. Howard A Member

    You know, we ( I) complain how modern cars all look the same, but all these “jalopies” all look the same to me. Usually minor differences, but I can’t tell one from another. I bet the “Conti” straight 8 moved this car right along, as fast as gravel 2 lanes would allow, anyway. Those “bumpers” look like sign or fence posts, I recognize the caps. I think this must have juice brakes. So, what do you do with it?

    Like 1
  6. Hot Wheels Calgary

    Neat car!

  7. John

    Wise not to speculate about specifics of this Elcar unless you know… The motor is a 70 HP. Lycoming 8 with valves tipped at an angle to piston bore for smaller head combustion path. Carb is a Schebler air valve type as is used on Duesenbergs. Lycoming also made the Duesenberg motors. The dash has a FEDCO identification plate to deter theft. Rear bumper is correct and would have a spare tire in the middle. It has external constricting hydraulic brakes. Owner can contact me for more info at

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