1929 Du Pont Model G Four-Passenger Speedster

One of the three Model G's still extant goes on display at Revs Institute

The Du Pont Speedster was one of the most desirable American sports cars produced in the late 1920s.

Its aristocratic name and racy look made it the darling of Hollywood’s elite after Mary Pickford bought an early two-seater for her husband, Douglas Fairbanks.

Photo: Copyright Revs Institute, Smith Hempstone Oliver Photograph Collection.

Based on his World War I marine engine business, E. Paul duPont launched a motorcar division in 1919. The cars were assembled for an elite market from only the finest outsourced components. Having produced 350 cars by 1928, duPont introduced his landmark Model G. With no fewer than sixteen body styles available, the Model G represented a luxurious lifestyle combined with stirring performance thanks to its 125-hp, eight-cylinder Continental engine and Warner four-speed transmission.

The Model G Speedster was available in either two- or four-seat versions. With an uprated 140 hp engine, the Speedster was just what the country club sportsman needed. Styled by George Briggs Weaver, the aluminum body had distinctive European features such as elevated running boards, and the company’s trademark painted, cast-aluminum radiator shell. Woodlite headlights added to the elegance.

All that was needed now was racing credibility. The company prepared two four-seat Speedsters for the 1929 Le Mans 24-hour race. Alas, only one Speedster was ready in time. Driven by Charles Moran Jr., the car performed well until the rules-required passenger ballast broke free and damaged the driveshaft. Undeterred, Du Pont entered Moran and a two-seat Speedster for the Indy 500 in 1930. A spin and a crash on the twenty-second lap put an end to Du Pont’s racing ambitions.  But, as intended, competition had made the Du Pont sporting news.

Demand for the fabulous Du Pont vanished with the Great Depression. The company ceased production in January 1932, having produced a mere 547 cars.

The 1929 Du Pont Speedster on display at Revs Institute is one of the fifteen produced and one of only three still extant. Model G specifications include: a straight eight-cylinder, side valve, in-line engine; L-head, 322 cubic inches, 140 hp at 3600 rpm; a wheelbase of 125 inches; a weight of 4500 pounds. This magnificent automobile was generously donated to Revs Institute in December 2021.