September 14, 2020


Riker Electric Motor Co. (1898-1899)

Brooklyn, New York

Riker Electric Vehicle Co. (1899-1900)

Elizabethport, New Jersey

Electric Vehicle Co. (1900-1903)

Hartford, Connecticut

Riker Motor Vehicle Co. (1900-1902)

Elizabethport, New Jersey

This is a Riker Motor Vehicle Company nameplate (c1901)     mjs
Size: 113mm wide 48mm high

Andrew Lawrence Riker established the Riker Electric Motor Company in Brooklyn, New York. He designed an electric three-wheeler in 1884 and built his first complete electric car in 1894. Riker then built an electric racer that won the Narragansett Park race at Rhode Island in 1896, and a few years later in a special low-slung electric torpedo he did a mile in 63 seconds and also won the first Long Island road race in 1900. Riker had built a four-wheel electric passenger car in 1895 and made his first sale in 1897. He began to manufacture electric delivery vans, hansom cabs and heavy trucks in 1898.

A.L.Riker reorganized as the Riker Electric Vehicle Company in 1899 and moved to Elizabethport in New Jersey. Riker sold his company in 1900 to the Electric Vehicle Company who continued to manufacture Riker electrics, initially at Elizabethport, New Jersey but then at Hartford, Connecticut. The Riker name was finally dropped in 1903.

 Riker was now interested in gasoline vehicles and he established the Riker Motor Vehicle Company in 1900. He built an 8 hp two-cylinder car and a 16 hp four-cylinder car. However, in 1902 Riker formed an alliance with another automobile company in Bridgeport, Connecticut and designed a car to be called the Locomobile (see Locomobile). The Riker name reappeared some years later from 1916 to 1921 on trucks previously named Locomobile but A.L.Riker was not directly involved (see Riker Truck).


Early Riker electric vehicles did not carry an emblem but did carry small nameplates attached to the body of the vehicle similar to the much later Electric Vehicle Company nameplate shown below:

This is a nameplate for the Electric Vehicle Company    mjs
Size: 113mm wide 57mm high

Riker Motor Vehicle Company vehicles carried a similar nameplate, see example shown at the top of this post. Original Riker nameplates are rare.

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