1937 Cord Model 812 SC Phaeton SOLD

RM Vintage Motorcars in Arizona - Biltmore Resort & Spa, Friday January 19, 2007

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ESTIMATE: $175,000 - $250,000

$165,000 Sold

190hp, 288 cu. in. L-head V8 with a Schwitzer-Cummins centrifugal supercharger, front wheel drive, four-speed preselector manual transmission, independent front suspension with rear semi-elliptic leaf springs and four-wheel hydraulic brakes. Wheelbase: 125"

E. L. Cord was a master salesman who worked his way up through the automobile business. At one time he controlled the Auburn and Duesenberg automobile companies, Lycoming, Stinson Aircraft and American Airways, along with Checker and Yellow cab companies in a portfolio of 156 companies. The basis of Cord ’ s industrial empire was Auburn manufacturing, which he acquired in 1924.

Part of E.L. Cord ’ s response to the stock market crash of 1929 was to build the baby Duesenberg, designed by the renowned Gordon Buehrig. Its distinctive styling provided the basis for a new medium-priced front-wheel drive car from Cord, eventually leading to the 1936 model 810. The 810 model line was intended to restore Cord ’ s auto manufacturing operations to full health using the proven formula of styling, performance and reasonable price. In the process, Gordon Buehrig ’ s low profile unibody style with its clean and unadorned coffin- nose and retractable headlight design would create a standard by which cars are still judged today. Powered by a Lycoming V8 engine, it created an instant sensation at its November 1935 introduction at the New York Auto Show – so much so that Cord could not meet the ensuing demand for orders.

One of the most attractive and desirable variants of the 810/812 series was and still is the supercharged phaeton, as displayed by the example shown here, sporting an elegantly rich shade of maroon. Model 810/812 Cord Phaetons were owned by some of the most stylish and noteworthy individuals of the period, some of which included Frank Lloyd Wright, Gary Cooper, and Clark Gable, while the great Tom Mix owned three Cords simultaneously. Model 810/812 Cords were only produced for a very limited time, about 18 months in total, from February 1936 to August 1937. Total production was less than 3,000 cars, less than 700 fitted with the supercharger. The phaeton was very rare, with a total production of 610 cars, and less than 200 of these were supercharged.

The 1937 Cord offered here is a factory original supercharged 812 Convertible Phaeton. The car is ACD certified no. C-214, and listed on page 261 of Josh Malks ’ book, “ Cord-The Timeless Classic ” . The nut and bolt, no- expense-spared restoration was completed in the summer of 2003 by Cole ’ s Classics. As part of the extensive restoration, the Cord experts at Cole ’ s Classics rebuilt the engine, supercharger, and the Cord trademark four- speed preselector transmission, which now shifts easily and reliably. The front-wheel drive Supercharged Cord 812 was one of the fastest cars of its era and can reach speeds of over 100 miles per hour. The exquisite restoration of this 812 SC Phaeton makes it one of the finest in existence today.

The Cord 810/812 remains one of the most significant automobiles in the annals of automotive design. Its combination of charisma, fresh styling, and innovative engineering make it one of the most desirable, practical and drivable cars of the classic era. Although the example offered here is ideally suited to be enjoyed on the open road, the quality of its restoration and matching numbers drivetrain is so impressive it would be a shame not to bring it to show.

Reference Number 5835

as of 1/10/2007

Car 1937 Cord Model 812 SC Phaeton
VIN 32194H 
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