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Elmore Car Company
The Elmore Manufacturing Company was founded by James and Burton Becker in Clyde, Ohio. Like many other early automobile manufacturers, the Elmore Company began by making bicycles. In 1900 they began making automobiles using a two-cycle engine, lending the Elmore the nickname "the car with no valves," a slogan the company used in all their advertising. Company literature complained that most automobile mechanical problems were due to the valve system, so accordingly, the Elmore "abolished" valves, which they claimed resulted in the abolishment of all ignition troubles.
The early Elmore cars had a one- or two-cylinder engine mounted under the seat, but in 1904, the company began putting a dummy hood on the front because buyers preferred a car that looked like it had a front-mounted engine. By 1908, Elmore autos featured three-cylinder engines and fairly standard styling. The company insisted, however, on retaining their two-cycle engines, even though most American manufacturers used a four-cycle engine.
The idiosyncratic Elmore Company appealed to the imagination of General Motors organizer William C. Durant, who added Elmore to General Motors in 1909. The following year, Durant was ousted as head of GM, and replaced by Thomas Nash, who began to reorganize GM. In order to increase the efficiency of GM operations, Nash closed companies that were not doing well and were not located in the Detroit area. The Elmore plant was closed in 1912.