1936 Auburn 852 SC Convertible Coupe SOLD

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

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ESTIMATE: $130,000 - $160,000

$220,000 Sold

150bhp, 279 cu. in. inline eight-cylinder engine, gear driven Schwitzer-Cummins centrifugal supercharger, three- speed manual transmission, live axle front and rear with a semi-elliptic leaf spring suspension, four-wheel hydraulically actuated drum brakes. Wheelbase: 127"

With a history dating back to the opening days of the twentieth century, the Auburn Motor Car Company had seen both good times and bad. In the late 1920s, the company was riding on the crest of a wave of impressive sales thanks in large part to the leadership and business savvy of Errett Lobban Cord.

Errett Lobban Cord knew humdrum cars would not cut it; if a car were to sell, it would need to have sizzle. When he stepped in to save the Auburn Motor Car Company in 1924, production and sales had fallen to a critical level and the company teetered on the verge of bankruptcy. Cord took a number of unsold Auburns being stored at the manufacturing facility, gave them stylish paint schemes and extra nickel plating and with that simple dash of marketing, sales took off.

Even as the American economy slipped into a depression in the early 1930s, Auburn sales remained strong, thanks in large part to a product offering of smartly styled, well-engineered and well-built products. In 1931 for example, Auburn enjoyed its best sales year ever; this occurred while other carmakers were seeing sharp declines in their sales and profits.

Auburn proved fallible when the company succumbed to the effects of the depression and began hemorrhaging red in 1933. Far from giving up, Cord saw the answer in a revitalized product, and of course, a new marketing push. The result was one of the most exciting products in Auburn history. Introduced in 1935, the 851 offered an optional Switzer-Cummins centrifugal supercharger, which increased output by 30 percent to a remarkable 150bhp. Developed by Kurt Beier at Schwitzer- Cummins and adapted to the Auburn-Lycoming engine by Augie Duesenberg and Pearl Watson, the centrifugal supercharger ran at six times engine speed and generated useful boost from 2,000 rpm upwards.

Cole ĺ s Classics completed the nut and bolt restoration of the matching numbers Auburn 852 SC offered here in the fall of 2003. Significant research was conducted before and during the restoration to ensure that all the details were correct. Included in the restoration, the engine, supercharger, and transmission were all rebuilt. The Auburn was painted in a rich shade of maroon, which contrasts very nicely with the cream colored painted wheels and wide whitewall tires. The interior and rumble seat are both exquisitely finished in tan Connolly leather. In keeping with the simple and clean styling of the Cabriolet, the tan top folds neatly underneath the tan tonneau cover.

A reliable and very attractive Auburn, the example offered here combines strong performance, beautiful open coachwork and a highly correct, concours quality restoration. There are only 13 Auburn 852 SC Cabriolets listed in the ACD directory, with this example being, quite possibly, the finest in existence. As such, the Auburn would be a welcome participant in many Auburn-Cord-Duesenberg Club and Classic Car Club of America events.

Reference Number 5855

as of 1/10/2007

Car 1936 Auburn 852 SC Convertible Coupe
VIN 35757F 
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