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About

.. the KisselKar Klub

The KisselKar Klub is dedicated to the preservation of the vehicles and history of the Kissel Motor Car Company.

Membership in the KisselKar Klub is available free-of-charge to owners of Kissel vehicles and to direct descendents of the Hartford, Wisconsin Kissel family. If you qualify and are not currently receiving our free newsletter, The Kisselgraph, or have access to the Members area of this website, please send a note to the webmaster with your contact information so we can update the roster.

The KisselKar Klub traces its origins to 1954 when several car owners joined with Gene Husting in proposing the plan to company founder William L. Kissel. These efforts and the principals guiding the organization are documented in an article published in Antique Automobile, Vol. 25, No. 2 (Mar-Apr 1961), pages 115-119.

.. the Kissel Motor Car Company

Founded in 1906 by Louis Kissel and his four sons, the Kissel Motor Car Company produced fine vehicles in Hartford, Wisconsin. Sons William L. Kissel and George A. Kissel were particularly active in the management of the company.

Over a period of 25 years, Kissel hand produced about 26,000 cars, trucks, ambulances, hearses, taxis and other vehicles. Although production numbers were low, Kissel was a highly respected producer of well-built, beautifully-styled cars. Kissel stopped production in 1930 due to the Great Depression and loss of market share. About 200 Kissel vehicles are thought to exist today.

The most famous Kissel model is undoubtedly the Speedster, a sporty roadster featuring racer-cut sides, a bumble-bee or turtle-back rear deck, and a convertible top that folded tight and low on the rear deck. This design was the concept of Conover T. Silver, a New York City distributor for Kissel, and Kissel designer J. Frederick Werner. In 1918 the company introduced the Silver Special Speedster, which was received with great enthusiasm at auto trade shows. By 1920 this body style was simply called the Kissel Speedster.

Many Kissel vehicles are designated as Full Classics™ by the Classic Car Club of America. These very special cars are "distinguished by their respective fine design, high engineering standards and superior workmanship."

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Last updated: Aug. 16, 2016