A Brief History of Crosley Motors

A Brief History of Crosley Motors


Crosley Motors was an American automobile manufacturer that was founded by Powel Crosley Jr. in 1939. The company was known for producing affordable and compact cars that were designed for economy and efficiency.

Powel Crosley Jr. was a successful businessman and inventor who had made his fortune in the radio and appliance industry. He saw an opportunity to produce a small, affordable car that would appeal to consumers who were looking for a more economical alternative to larger, more expensive cars.

In 1939, Crosley Motors introduced its first car, the Crosley CC. The Crosley CC was a small two-door sedan that was powered by a 26.5 horsepower four-cylinder engine. The car was designed to be affordable, with a base price of just $325.

The Crosley CC was a success, and the company went on to produce a range of other models, including the Crosley Station Wagon, the Crosley Super, and the Crosley Hotshot. The Crosley Hotshot was a sporty two-seater that was designed for racing, and it became popular among amateur racing enthusiasts.

Crosley’s all-steel Wagons were their best sellers (1947–1952) (Wikipedia)
1950 Crosley Hotshot (Wikipedia)

During World War II, Crosley Motors shifted its production to support the war effort. The company produced a range of products for the military, including radios, generators, and other equipment.

Crosley Farm O Road (Wikipedia)
with rear bed extension (Wikipedia)

After the war, Crosley Motors resumed production of its cars. In the late 1940s and early 1950s, the company produced several popular models, including the Crosley Super Sport and the Crosley Farm-O-Road, which was a small utility vehicle that was designed for farmers and other rural workers.

1951 Crosley Super Sport (Wikipedia)


Crosley Motors produced a range of small and efficient engines that were designed to power its compact cars and other products. The company was known for its innovative engine designs and its focus on economy and efficiency.

The first engine used by Crosley Motors was a two-cylinder air-cooled engine that was used in the company’s first car, the Crosley CC. This engine was designed to be lightweight and compact, and it produced 13 horsepower. The engine was made from aluminium and was very efficient, allowing the Crosley CC to achieve excellent gas mileage.

Crosley CoBra Engine Complete with Transmission (Wikipedia)

In 1946, Crosley Motors introduced a new engine, the CoBra (Copper Brazed), which was a four-cylinder water-cooled engine. The CoBra engine was designed to be more powerful and efficient than the previous two-cylinder engine. It produced 26.5 horsepower and was made from copper-brazed steel, which made it very durable.

In 1949, Crosley Motors introduced another new engine, the CIBA (Cast Iron Block Assembly), which was a four-cylinder water-cooled engine that was designed to be even more powerful than the CoBra engine. The CIBA engine produced 44 horsepower and was made from cast iron. It was used in several Crosley models, including the Crosley Super and the Crosley Hotshot.

One of the most innovative engines produced by Crosley Motors was the CoBra Marine engine, which was used in small boats. This engine was based on the CoBra car engine, but it was modified for marine use. It was very lightweight and compact, and it was designed to be easy to maintain.

Despite its early success, Crosley Motors faced several challenges in the 1950s. The company struggled to compete with larger car manufacturers, and it faced financial difficulties. In 1952, Crosley Motors announced that it would be discontinuing its car production.

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