With their reputation for ruggedness and reliability, Dodge Brothers cars were favorites for taxicab use. Take this handsome 1930 DD Series Sedan, for instance.
The 1930 model year was the last in which the full Dodge Brothers name was officially used. The Dodge brothers, John F. and Horace E., had passed away in 1920. In 1928, the company became part of Chrysler. Beginning in 1931, Brothers was dropped from the name and the cars were marketed simply as Dodges. (The name change was applied to trucks the year before.) However, the Dodge Brothers’ logo, a pair of interlocking white and black triangles, stayed in use through 1939.
The 1930 DD models were built on a 109-inch-wheelbase chassis with wood-spoke wheels and a six-cylinder, L-head engine that produced 61 horsepower. These specifications seem quaint, almost primitive today, but at the time, Dodge Brothers cars were highly regarded for their engineering and construction.
In fact, Dodge vehicles in these years were noted for their ability to run for thousands of miles on end with few if any repairs. As a publicity exercise, a 1930 Dodge 8 Sedan was sent out around the country on what the company called a Mileage Marathon, racking up over 104, 000 miles in 13 months, an impressive feat in those days. The Dodge’s nearly indestructible nature made it perfect for fleet duty, including taxicabs.
In the early 1930s when this cab was cruising the streets, taxi laws were lax in many cities and unscrupulous, so-called “gypsy cab” operators were commonplace. To keep things honest, reputable taxi companies painted their rates right on the exteriors of their cabs, allowing passengers to see their fares in advance. As we see here, on this cab the fare was 5 cents per quarter-mile with a 15-cent minimum. You certainly couldn’t get very far on 15 cents today.