Identifying a Pierce Arrow

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    I just received this picture of a 1930 Pierce Arrow 8cyl. 5 pass sedan. The owner is interested in the possibilities of trading it for one of my cars (1957 Continental MKII). He mentioned that it was a model 133 with a 133inch wheel base which does not seem correct to me but I am very new to Pierce Arrows. Has anyone seen this car at a show or other places? He is in the process of getting more pictures and info to me. The car runs well but has some electrical problems. It is located in FL so I would need someone to look at for me if it gets that far. Thanks for any information or advice.


    The picture is not showing up for some reason, I will try to post it soon.


    third try


    I’ll be taking a trip to Florida soon. What town is it located in? If close to my area I’ll check it out for you. Ed


    Hello Martin,

    The model designation “133” is a 1929 model, rather than a 1930. Looking at some of the features in the photograph that can be seen, the louvered hood, the flat headlight lenses, the short door handles, it also appears to be a 1929. If you have the serial number, we can tell definitively.

    1929/1930/1931 can be difficult to tell apart. Cars that did not sell one year were sometimes sold as new cars the next year in this period as the depression was on and sales were falling. The serial number, however, will tell you definitively what year the car is.

    What kind of electrical problem is the owner reporting?

    It would be great if Ed could look at the car for you. He has expert knowledge and a real eye for old cars!

    Happy Motoring,

    Chris Diekman


    There is some confusion on 1929-30 cars, especially those produced late in 1929. I’m sure some 1929-30 owners will be able to correct any misinformation I may give you here! :-)

    It looks like EITHER a 1929 Model 133 or an early 1930 Model C–both have the louvered hood sides. Two wheelbases were offered in 1929 with the model designation reflecting the wheelbase: 133 and 143. In 1930, three models were offered: A (144 wb, 385 cid engine), B (134 wb on open cars, 139 wb on closed cars, both with 366 cid engine), and C (132 wb, 340 cid engine).

    Identifying numbers for those cars are:

    1929 133: seven digit chassis number (on rectangular plate riveted to frame–see ID Wizard) beginning with 200…; engine number is “A-[four numbers].

    1930 C: seven digit serial (chassis) number beginning with 100…; engine number is six digits beginning with 10…..

    The title may have either one number or the other.

    By policy, PAS identifies cars by the serial (chassis) number. However, many of the rectangular serial tags have disappeared over the years, so you will see the entry “MISSING” instead of a serial number for a considerable number of cars.

    See the ID Wizard for the locations of the numbers. When you get one, enter it in the Wizard and you’ll know what the car is.



    No courtesy light on the splash panel above the running board would indicate an early 1929. The front door is too wide for a 1930 model C, but that is what it would be otherwise, if the lights were round instead of flat.


    Hello Martin,

    With the small hub caps, my bet is that it is a 29′.

    Good luck, john Steckbeck


    The engine number (if original) and chassis number (if available on the data plate), will indicate definitively what year and model it is. A careful wheelbase measurement will do the same.

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