1937 Cord Model 812 SC Sportsman CabrioletSOLD

RM Auctions - Monterey Sports & Classic Car Auction - August 16-18

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Estimate: $225,000-$275,000 US

AUCTION RESULTS: Lot was Sold at a price of $247,500

185hp, 269 cu. in. L-head V8 with centrifugal supercharger, front wheel drive, four-speed preselector manual transmission, independent front suspension with rear semi-elliptic leaf springs and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 125"

In 1929, E. L. Cord introduced the front wheel drive Auburn-derived automobile he named after himself. The Cord Front Drive, now commonly known as the L29, had a highly distinctive and sporting appearance, while offering outstanding performance for its price.

Shortly after the introduction of the L29, the stock market crashed and with it the market for the second Cord project – the Baby Duesenberg. The project would stay dormant for five years, patiently waiting for the worst of the Depression to pass. The wait would end in 1936 when distinctive styling, penned by the legendary Gordon Buehrig, provided the basis for a new medium priced front-wheel drive car. Despite the original plans, it was decided that the car would not be a junior Duesenberg but rather would resurrect the Cord brand. They called this car the 810.

The 810 was intended to restore Cord ’ s auto manufacturing operations to prosperity using the proven formula: styling, performance and a reasonable price. The result, Gordon Buehrig ’ s clean and unadorned coffin-nosed, retractable headlight design would create a sensation at the time, and set a standard of automotive beauty by which cars are still judged today.

The 1937 Cords, designated 812, were little changed from 1936 models except for the supercharged engine option. Cord ’ s experience with Duesenberg, another of the Cord companies, and his ownership of Lycoming made it relatively simple for them to add a Schwitzer-Cummins centrifugal supercharger that provided a maximum of 6psi boost and increased the Lycoming V8 ’ s power to between 185 and 195 horsepower. The chromed outside exhaust pipes gave external identification of the power residing under the coffin nosed hood.

The 1937 Cord 812 SC presented here is an original factory Supercharged Convertible Coupe (Sportsman) and certified by the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Club. According to the ACD Verification of Authenticity, the Sportsman was originally sold in Illinois, but has spent most of its life in California, Arizona, and Colorado. Although the first owner or owners are unknown, the history of the Cord dates back to 1950 when it was purchased by Len Gutterson of Pasadena, California. In 1953, the Cord was sold to Andrew and Christina Roos, who owned it until 1969.

The next owner was Lee R. Richardson of Carefree, Arizona, who owned the Cord for 28 years. Mr. Richardson was well known as one of the early founders of the Disney Corporation. In his years at Disney, he is credited for inventing a variety of high tech camera equipment. Lee was also an avid Cord enthusiast and in 1940 became the second owner of the Robin ’ s Egg Blue Barbara Stanwyck Phaeton. Being an engineer, it was in Richardson ’ s nature to look for ways to improve mechanical things; during his ownership, Richardson made numerous improvements to the Sportsman.

In 1997, the Sportsman was purchased by Harold P. Bjorkland of Castle Rock, Colorado. During Bjorkland ’ s ownership, the Cord was fully restored, which included repainting the car burgundy and installing a light brown interior. The current owner acquired the Sportsman in 2006 and has carefully maintained its highly presentable condition. Today it remains a very usable Cord, and with its supercharged Lycoming V8 certainly lives up to its name – Sportsman.

Reference Number 10069

as of 6/1/2007

Car 1937 Cord Model 812 SC Sportsman Cabriolet
VIN 32023F 
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