August 12, 2020


Dile Motor Car Co. (c1913-1916)

Reading, Pennsylvania

This may be a reproduction Dile radiator script   bmhv

The Dile was named after Fred K Dick and Irvin D Lenger by taking the first two letters of their last names. The Dile Motor Car Company was established in 1913, as was confirmed by press announcements in December 1913. 

The Dile was a small 11 hp four-cylinder, two-passenger sport roadster, sometimes advertised as a cyclecar. The first Dile may have been assembled in 1913 but production probably did not start until 1914, when the car was advertised for sale at $485. In June 1914, it was announced that the Dile Motor Car Company had "recently put out a roadster" and was planning to increase production to five cars a day.  

The Dile Motor Car Company declared bankruptcy in mid-1916 with problems arising from material shortages due to the First World War cited as reasons for the difficulties suffered by Dile. It took until the fall of 1918 before the Dile assets were finally sold to Belmont Motors Corporation.


It appears that the Dile did not carry a radiator emblem. I have been informed that the Dile also did not carry a radiator script. However, I can find no original period photos or illustrations of the Dile clearly showing the radiator to confirm this absolutely. The following Dile advertisement from 1914 does have a photo of a Dile roadster, which appears not to show a radiator emblem or script but the photo is unclear. 

Dile advertisement (1914)    ebay

If you have any original period photos showing the Dile radiator, please let me know in order to update this post.

There is a surviving 1914 Dile Model A on display at the Boyertown Museum of Historic Vehicles. This car has a brass "Dile" script attached to the radiator core, as shown above at the top of this post. However, I cannot confirm that this script is original. This script may have been added at a much later date, probably during restoration, in order to decorate the vehicle. 
The "Dile" name does appear on the hub caps, see example below:

This is a Dile hub cap (c1913-1916)    bmhv

Footnote to Donn: You have sent me several anonymous messages saying that you are the leading authority on Dile cars but you do not give your email address. I would like to seek your advice. Please send your email address.

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