1933 Marmon Sixteen Victoria CoupeSOLD

1933 Marmon Sixteen Victoria Coupe

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To be offered at auction at RM Sotheby's Monterey event, August 13-15, 2015. To view this car and others currently consigned to this auction, please visit the RM website at rmsothebys.com/.

Chassis No.
16 143 907

Estimate:
$400,000 - $500,000

Body Style 143. 200 bhp, 490.8 cu. in. OHV V-16 engine, three-speed manual synchromesh transmission, solid front axle with semi-elliptical leaf springs, live rear axle with semi-elliptical leaf springs, and four-wheel vacuum-assisted mechanical drum brakes. Wheelbase: 145 in.


Formerly owned by Larry Harvey and Bernie Ecclestone
Beautiful and authentic Bob Mosier restoration, with Severns-Ridgley heads
Class award winner at the 1995 Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance
Documented by Dyke W. Ridgley's Marmon Sixteen Roster
One of three surviving Victoria Coupes on the most developed 1933 Sixteen chassis

MARMON'S MASTERPIECE

The Marmon Sixteen was introduced in 1931, and it represented automobile pioneer Colonel Howard Marmon's ultimate, greatest, and most impressive vision for what a luxury car should be. With beautiful, coachbuilt bodies by LeBaron and a state-of-the-art overhead-valve engine that displaced over 490 cubic inches, the Marmon Sixteen was capable of 200 horsepower and a top speed of over 100 mph. The Sixteen was a triumph of pattern-making and foundry technology; its all-aluminum engine construction was matched to a chassis that was state of the art, and the model had an unmatched power-to-weight ratio. In fact, the car was reportedly capable of out-accelerating a Duesenberg Model J, yet it cost buyers only a third as much. This was something that no doubt embarrassed Marmon's Indianapolis neighbor.

Credit for the Sixteen's styling is often given to industrial design legend Walter Dorwin Teague Sr., but it was, in fact, his son, Walter Jr., who penned the beautiful lines that ultimately entered production. Dorwin, as he was known, was a student at MIT and a gifted designer in his father's mold. He envisioned a sleek and graceful car that was completely devoid of gratuitous ornamentation and characterized by simple shapes, with a bold beltline, low roofline, and raked windshield. Particularly noteworthy were the fenders, which had an understated skirting in the front that served to hide the working components of the suspension and chassis.

Unfortunately, Cadillac's own V-16 beat Marmon to the market by almost two years, stealing the thunder of what otherwise would have taken the automotive world by storm. Also, Howard Marmon lacked a deep-pocketed backer like General Motors to help his company survive the Great Depression. The writing was on the wall, and the end came quietly in 1933, after approximately 370375 Sixteens were produced. The Sixteen was the final production Marmon automobile, but it was also the car that ensured this great company—the winner of the first Indianapolis 500 in 1911—would be remembered for its exploits on the road as well as the track.

CHASSIS NUMBER 16 143 907

The five-passenger Victoria Coupe offered here is documented by historian Dyke W. Ridgley as having its original engine, chassis, and body. As a 1933 model, it is desirably equipped with vacuum-assisted brakes and driver-adjustable rear shock absorbers. Its ownership history has been traced back to 1968, when, in the ownership of Adolf Kull, of Mattoon, Illinois, it was featured in the March issue of Cars & Parts magazine. By 1972, it had been purchased by early Sixteen enthusiast, connoisseur, and restorer Oliver Kofoed, of Yuma, Colorado, who was one of the foremost authorities on the cars in his time. He owned the Victoria Coupe for five years before selling it to Sherwood Kahlenburg, a real estate developer and collector from North Hollywood, California.

Mr. Kahlenburg sold the Victoria Coupe in 1993. It was then acquired by respected collector and enthusiast Larry Harvey, of Palos Verdes, California, and was subject to a complete restoration by the famous shop of Bob Mosier. The car was refinished in its present shade of dove grey, with body and fenders in a slightly lighter hue and a new interior in blue-grey cloth. Thus completed, the Marmon was displayed at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance in 1994 and was awarded Second in Class. It then achieved its Junior First Prize in CCCA competition at the California Grand Classic the following year.

In October 1995, Mr. Harvey was convinced to sell his Marmon to Formula One impresario Bernie Ecclestone. It remained in Mr. Ecclestone's prestigious collection for the next 12 years. When the Victoria Coupe was prepared to be offered for sale, it was road-tested for an article in the November 2007 issue of Classic & Sportscar magazine, marking one of the rare appearances of a Sixteen in a UK publication!

At the dispersal of Mr. Ecclestone's cars, the Marmon was sold to Gordon Wangers and returned to the country of its birth. Fresh upon its arrival back on the West Coast, it was shown at the Dana Point Concours d'Elegance, where it was awarded Best in Class. It was then brought to Alan Taylor & Company, of Escondido, where the wheels were repainted prior to the car's acquisition in 2010 by its present gentleman enthusiast owner, who recently had the improved Severns-Ridgley heads installed.

The Marmon has been consistently well maintained in its current home and has continued an enjoyable show career, scoring 99.25 points and receiving its Senior First prize at the CCCA Southern California Region Grand Classic. In December 2012, it made yet another magazine appearance, in Collectible Automobile magazine.

With only 70 complete Sixteens surviving, few classic car enthusiasts ever have the opportunity to drive, much less own, a Marmon Sixteen. Offered in well-maintained and beautiful cosmetic and mechanical condition to a happy new home, this is one of the most striking examples of a rare body style on what may have been the most advanced American chassis and drivetrain of its era.

Reference Number 363597

as of 8/19/2015

Overview
Car 1933 Marmon Sixteen Victoria Coupe
VIN 16 143 907 
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