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The Kato Automobile & The Four-Traction Auto Co.

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Kato
The Four-Traction Auto Co.
Mankato, MN
1907-1913

The Four-Traction Auto Co. and built the Kato, the first American Automobile with four wheel drive. Ernest Rosenburger was a Mankato candy maker who founded Four-Traction Auto Co. in 1907. Rosenberger designed and patented his four wheel drive chassis to overcome wheel spin on Mankato's steep hills.

The Kato was equipped with a two cylinder 24 horsepower engine that had shaft drive to front and rear wheels.

1908 Kato Automobile
1908 Kato Automobile

The Kato was built as five and seven passenger Touring Cars. In addition 1 1/2 ton trucks, light truck and fire engines were produced by The Four-Traction Auto Co. of Mankato, MN, all with four wheel drive. Only about 15 automobiles and 25 trucks were built and they were priced around $2,250.

1910 Kato Four Wheel Drive Truck
1910 Kato Four Wheel Drive Truck

We are looking for additional Kato automobile photographs or vintage Kato advertising for this web page. In the mean time enjoy this Corcoran Lamp ad from a vintage 1910 magazine.

1910 Corcoran Lamps
1910 Corcoran Lamps

Corcoran Lamps according to this 1910 advertisement were "To Be Seen On Automobiles Of Quality" and "High Class Cars Carry High Class Equipment". All Corcoran Lamps were made of brass.

1910 Checker Cab
1910 Checker Cab

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  • Fabulous Tail Fins of the 50s & 60s

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