May 21, 2022

KRIT

Krit Motor Car Co. (1910-1915)
Detroit, Michigan


This is a KRIT radiator emblem (1912-1914)    mjs
Size: 53mm diameter   MM: None

The name Krit came from the name of the designer, Kenneth Crittenden, who established the Krit Motor Car Company in 1909. The first Krit cars were introduced as 1910 models and were initially spelled "K-R-I-T". Krit cars won several hill climb events in 1910, which gave good initial publicity. 

Krit cars were introduced as 22.5 hp four-cylinder vehicles offered in runabout. roadster and surrey body styles with an underslung model introduced in 1911. For 1913 only, the four-cylinder Krit engine size was increased to 25 hp and a 36 hp six-cylinder model was also offered. The Krit initially enjoyed a good export trade to the UK and elsewhere but this was disrupted by the onset of the War in Europe.

The 1912 Krit Model K chassis was used as the basis for the Krit Model KD closed delivery van. There was also a Krit Model L delivery van produced in 1914.

The company was in financial trouble soon after its formation. The company changed ownership in 1911 and capitalization was increased but this was unsuccessful and a further reorganization took place in 1914 but the company was bankrupt by 1915.

Emblems

The first K-R-I-T cars appearing in 1910 did not carry an emblem but did display a brass "K-R-I-T" script attached to the radiator core, see original 1910 factory illustration and 1910 brochure cover shown below:

K-R-I-T factory illustration (1910)   bhl

K-R-I-T brochure cover (1910)   bhl

The following is a brass K-R-I-T radiator script. Original K-R-I-T radiator scripts are rare.

This is a K-R-I-T radiator script (1910-1915)     mjs
Size: 232mm wide

K-R-I-T advertisements in early 1910 showed the "K-R-I-T" script logo and a swastika in a circle inside a diamond, which was used as the hub face, see examples shown below:

This is a K-R-I-T ad showing hubcap design (1910)

Close-up showing K-R-I-T hubcap (1910) 

This shows an early K-R-I-T hubcap (1910)   sonicbidder

This is an early K-R-I-T hub face (c1910)   mjs
Size: 61mm diameter

Later in 1910, the first K-R-I-T radiator emblem appeared, following the design used on the hubcaps, see original photo shown below:

This is a K-R-I-T with radiator emblem (1910)    dpl 

This K-R-I-T radiator emblem was originally painted to show the detailed design, see restored example shown below. This K-R-I-T radiator emblem is very rare.

This is a K-R-I-T radiator emblem (1910-1912)   ms
Size: 68mm wide 68mm high    MM: Unknown

Original period photos of K-R-I-T cars indicate that some models continued without a radiator emblem through 1911 and the radiator emblem shown above is seen to continue into 1912.

The following Krit factory illustration of a 1912 Krit Model K, for example, shows the first radiator emblem still in use and a new design of hubcap, which has the swastika on a circular hub face but without the diamond shaped background:

This is a Krit Model K (1912)    bhl

Close-up showing rad emblem & hubcap (1912)    bhl

The following shows an example of a Krit hubcap face with the swastika within a circle:

This appears to be a Krit hub face (date unknown)   sam
Size: 62mm diameter 

The striking white and blue enamel Krit radiator emblem shown below appeared on Krit cars for the 1912 model year. This Krit radiator emblem is much sought after by emblem collectors and is very rare. 

This is a Krit radiator emblem (1912-1914)
Size: 53mm diameter    MM: None

This Krit radiator emblem has two holes but the emblem was not riveted to the radiator. It was soldered to the radiator and the holes were originally filled with false rivets, see example shown below of the emblem soldered to a radiator on a surviving 1912 Krit Model A:

Krit Model A radiator emblem with false rivets (1912)  bonhams

Emblem collectors should beware, as there are reproduction Krit emblems, usually finished in red, white and black enamel, see two different examples shown below:

This is a reproduction Krit emblem    ms

This is a reproduction Krit emblem   ms

The "Krit" name and logo was also displayed on the sill plates of Krit motor cars where these were fitted, see example shown below:

This is a Krit sill plate (1912)    bonhams

Following the 1914 reorganization of the company, the brass Krit radiator was replaced by a black painted round top radiator, which did not carry an emblem, but the "KRIT" name was displayed on a radiator script. This arrangement is clearly shown in the 1914 Krit brochure illustration below:

Krit brochure illustration showing radiator and script (1914)  ms

The black radiator with a script but no radiator emblem is also seen in the following original Krit photo from 1914:

Krit car with black painted radiator and no emblem (1914)  wheelsage

This type of radiator continued to be used without an emblem until the end of Krit production in 1915.

I am not sure about the use of the following black painted, pressed metal, K-R-I-T emblem. This Krit emblem may have been used as a radiator emblem on the 1914 Krit Model L delivery van but I cannot confirm this. If you can identify this K-R-I-T emblem, please let me know, in order to update this post. This K-R-I-T emblem is very rare.

This is a K-R-I-T emblem (date uncertain)    mjs
Size: 131mm wide 43mm high   MM: None


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