The Minerva started as a bicycle. In 1897 Sylvain de Jong returned to Belgium from America with dreams of a better bicycle called the Minerva. In 1899 he crafted his first automobile and used the same name. Production of the Minerva ran 1902-1938 and became a favorite for many of the royal families of Europe.
Featuring a removable roof panel above the driver’s seat, this particular 1928 Minerva is the AF Transformable Town Car which features coachwork by Hibbard and Darrin. This model was only produced for four years. Since 2018, this Minerva’s elegance, extraordinarily-crafted interior, and timeless design have won awards at Concourses at Pebble Beach and Amelia Island and earned special invitations to Lake Como and Hampton Court Palace.
The Quiet Knight
The Minerva features the big-budget 5.3-liter six-cylinder Knight Sleeve Valve engine designed by Charles Yale Knight of Indiana.
Charles Yale Knight’s Creation
Dissatisfied with the noisy valves in his own cars, Knight designed an engine that used iron sleeves to buffer the pistons and cylinder block, allowing the pistons to slide on the sleeves.
The result was a much more expensive engine that cut down on running noise but was harder to turn over and was more expensive to repair. The car itself cost $15,000 during the Prohibition.
1928 Minerva Town Car Specs
- 150 BHP
- 363.3 cubic inch V-6 engine
- Top speed 70 MPH
- Wheelbase of 149.5 inches
- Years of Production: 1926-1930
- 1987 Pebble Beach Best of Show winner
- 2018 Pebble Beach 1st place in European Classic Early class
- 2019 Ameilia Island most Elegant French Coachwork
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