1911 Marmon Wasp
The Wasp is among America’s most significant race cars. Engineer, airplane pilot and race car driver, Ray Harroun, piloted the custom-built, streamlined, single-seat Marmon to victory at the inaugural Indianapolis 500-mile race. In the 100 plus years of racing at the Indianapolis oval track since, the annual Memorial Day competition has become one of the most important races in the world drawing some of the largest single-day spectator counts for a sporting event. The Wasp predates the race by a handful of years as it was campaigned by Nordyke & Marmon Co. to promote their passenger autos at many pioneering races around the country. It is believed to be among the first cars to utilize a rearview mirror which allowed Harroun a slight advantage in that he did not have a passenger “riding mechanic” watching traffic behind him.
The Wasp has never been fully restored and is a fixture of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum where it has spent most of its life. NHVR No. 11 HAER No. IN-115
Paint and exterior
This vehicle is in mostly unrestored condition. It has likely been repainted but never undergone a concours restoration.
Upholstery and interior
This vehicle’s interior is in mostly unrestored condition. It features a black leather seat and basic cabin.
Original Engine: Yes
Liquid-cooled, flathead inline-6 cyl 447cid/110hp with 1bbl updraft carburetor, magneto ignition. Restored/Rebuilt
The mileage for the Marmon is unknown. It is in running condition and has been used for parade laps around the famed Brickyard.
Wheels and tires
25" wood wheels with steel covers, 34x4.5 Firestone bias-ply tires
Rear-wheel mechanical drum brakes
3-speed manual transmission with cone clutch, shaft-drive