March 04, 2024


Atlas Motor Car Co. (1907-1911)
Springfield, Massachusetts

This is an Atlas radiator script (1907-c1909)    mjs
Size: 300mm wide

Harry A. Knox had considerable experience in the automobile industry, having set up and left the Knox Automobile Company and established the Knox Motor Truck Company. In 1906, Harry Knox set up a deal with the Sunset Automobile Company in San Francisco to develop their two-cylinder two-stoke engine, which he then used to power his 22 hp Atlas runabout with its "Perfected Two-Cycle Engine", which was introduced in 1907. The Atlas Motor Car Company was organized later in 1907. 

The same engine was used for the Atlas delivery car in 1908 and the Atlas taxi cab. A 34 hp three-cylinder model and a larger 48 hp four-cylinder model were also introduced in 1908. The three-cylinder model was dropped by 1911. 

There was a major change in 1912 with the introduction of the four-cylinder Knight sleeve-valve engine and the change in name to the Atlas-Knight. The business failed early in 1913.


The first Atlas cars did not carry an emblem but did display the "Atlas" name on a brass script mounted on the radiator core, see the following Atlas advertisement for 1907:

Atlas advertisement showing a radiator script (1907)   ma

Atlas motor car illustration showing radiator script (1907)

The Atlas radiator script is also seen on the following original period photos:

Atlas motor car showing radiator script (c1907)   dpl

Atlas car at an auto trade show showing radiator script (1908)  dpl

This is the brass Atlas radiator script shown above at the top of this post and again below. Original Atlas radiator scripts are rare.

This is an Atlas radiator script (1907-c1909)   mjs
Size: 300mm wide

By 1909, the Atlas had an "Atlas" script emblem displayed on the radiator tank top, see the original photos shown below:

Atlas car with rad emblem in New York to Boston Reliability Tour (1909)   dpl

Atlas cars with radiator emblem at an auto show (1910)    dpl

This "Atlas" script radiator emblem appears to be stamped into the radiator tank top, in some cases possibly painted white to show up against a black painted radiator shell.

The following photo shows the brass "Atlas" script radiator emblem on a surviving 1910 Atlas Model H touring car:

This shows the "Atlas" script rad emblem (1910)  conceptcarz

The "Atlas" name was also displayed on a small painted Atlas nameplate/serial plate, see examples shown below:

This shows the Atlas nameplate/serial plate (1910)  conceptcarz

This is an Atlas nameplate/serial plate (c1908-1911)  mjs
Size: 76mm wide 50mm high

The "Atlas" script radiator emblem appears to have sometimes been applied using a decal or a stencil, see surviving Atlas radiator shell shown below:

This shows an Atlas radiator script decal (date uncertain)  pcc

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