The American was an American
automobile A car or automobile is a motor vehicle with wheels. Most definitions of ''cars'' say that they run primarily on roads, seat one to eight people, have four wheels, and mainly transport people instead of goods. The year 1886 is regarded as ...
, built in
Plainfield, New Jersey Plainfield is a city in Union County, in the U.S. state of New Jersey, known by its nickname as "The Queen City."
, manufactured from 1917 to 1924. The company also used names American Balanced Six or American Six, "Balanced" referred to its chassis, not the engine. It was an assembled car, one of many built in its time, and it used components from several manufacturers like
Borg & Beck 'Borg & Beck'' is a British car parts company owned by First Line Ltd. It was started as a tool company in Moline, Illinois, in the United States, bCharles Borgand Marshall Beck. In 1909 theinventedthe first practical sliding clutch. It merge ...
for clutch, Warner transmission, Stromberg carburetor and Rutenber engines. The company was never large; its peak production was 1400 vehicles built in 1920. In that same year a powerful 58 hp Herschell-Spillman six-cylinder engine replaced old 45 hp Rutenber six. American was commonly advertised as a 'Smile Car' because the company believed their cars offered trouble-free miles for their owners. In 1923 the company became associated with the Bessemer Motor Truck Corporation; that October, the company became Amalgamated Motors, incorporating Northway and Winther as well. Before spring of 1924 American car was out of production. The total number of cars produced was about 6000 cars. For a brief time, famed racing driver and future automobile designer
Louis Chevrolet Louis-Joseph Chevrolet (; December 25, 1878 – June 6, 1941) was a Swiss-American race car driver, mechanic and entrepreneur who co-founded the Chevrolet Motor Car Company in 1911. Early life Louis-Joseph Chevrolet was born on December 25, 1 ...
worked as a vice-president and the head of American's engineering department.


American Automobiles
Defunct manufacturing companies based in New Jersey Plainfield, New Jersey Vintage vehicles Defunct motor vehicle manufacturers of the United States {{Vintage-auto-stub