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Automotive giant Ransom E. Olds left not only a lasting impression on the automobile industry, but also on the state of Michigan where he spent much of his life.

Automotive giant Ransom E. Olds left not only a lasting impression on the automobile industry, but also on the state of Michigan where he spent much of his life.

A 1901 demonstration in front of the grandstands at the Grosse Point Fairgrounds. The teeterboard was used to exhibit the great control of the center car.

A 1901 demonstration in front of the grandstands at the Grosse Pointe Fairgrounds. The teeterboard was used to exhibit the great control of the center car.

R.E. olds tinkered with engines and concepts. In 1886-1887, he came up with his first design and prototype for a "horseless carriage.

R. E. Olds tinkered with engines and concepts. During 1886-87, he came up with his first design and prototype for a "horseless carriage."

The REO Motor Car Company, founded in 1904, invented many of the innovations that people today expect from cars.

The REO Motor Car Company, founded in 1904, invented many of the innovations that people today expect from cars. Among its many achievements, REO was the first automobile manufacturer to use electric lights and an electric starter on a commercial vehicle.

A photograph of the first Reo Roadster, which was built in October 1904.

A photograph of the first REO Roadster, which was built in October 1904.

Ransom Olds is seen underneath this 4-cylinder automobile. The car completed a cross-country drive from New York to San Francisco in ten days, 15 hours, and 12 minutes in 1911.

Ransom Olds is seen underneath this four-cylinder automobile. The car completed a cross-country drive from New York to San Francisco in 10 days, 15 hours, and 12 minutes in 1911.

The REO Speedwagon first went into production in 1911. The Speedwagon remained the classic Reo truck until the Gold Comet replaced it after World War II. The REO Speedwagon first went into production in 1911. The Speedwagon remained the classic REO truck until the Gold Comet replaced it after World War II.
Following World War II, the company diversified to produce toys, school buses, diesel tractors, city transit coaches, and lawnmowers.

Following World War II, the company diversified to produce toys, school buses, diesel tractors, city transit coaches, and lawnmowers.

REO introduced the Flying Cloud city transit coach in 1948. The bus was expensive because the unitized body was supposed to prevent serious injuries in the event of a rollover.

REO introduced the Flying Cloud city transit coach in 1948. The bus was expensive because the unitized body was supposed to prevent serious injuries in the event of a rollover.

 


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