Some interesting cars in history

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Performance vehicles seem to be all the rage these days. Even R-R is touting their performance. All the other performance cars are outdoing each other with zero to 100 km/h around three seconds, which quite frankly is far too quick for the average well-heeled driver.

Duesenberg Model J.
Duesenberg Model J.

The power struggle started many years ago with Duesenberg being the first car company to build a straight 8 engine, and the Model J had a DOHC 4V engine producing 265 HP resulting in 94 mph in 2nd gear and 120 mph in top.

The supercharged SJ version had 320 HP, with 105 in 2nd gear and 135 + mph in top and zero to 60 mph in 8 seconds, not bad for 1933 and a 2.5 ton car. Brakes were hydraulic, and this behemoth would have needed them!

This particular car which is coming up for auction is chassis number 2421 and was previously owned by Harrah’s, The Blackhawk Collection and The Imperial Palace Collection, and has been documented by numerous Duesenberg historians, including Fred Roe, Don Butler, Dean Batchelor, Don Howell, Dennis Adler and others. It has been featured in numerous books on the marque, and has been displayed at the Pebble Beach Concourse d’Elegance, most recently in 2007 (finished in red and owned by Yasuhiko Akimoto). It has crossed the auction block on a few other occasions as well, selling for $1.8 million in 1989 and crossing the stage last year in Monterey, where it bid to $3.6 million but failed to meet the reserve price.

Refinished in the original light tan by the consignor sometime after 2007, the car is one of 14 Duesenbergs bodied by Bohman & Schwartz, and one of six convertible coupes built upon the 153.5 inch long-wheelbase chassis. As previously referenced, it’s also the only LWB convertible coupe body built by Bohman & Schwartz, meaning that the stately disappearing-top will likely be a standout at any concourse entered. Its last appearance at Pebble Beach was unjudged, leaving the door open for the car’s next owner to compete at the highest level of the show hobby. Mecum is predicting a selling price between $3.5 million and $4.0 million when the Duesy crosses the stage in Indiana next month.

And if any of my readers has ever owned a Duesy, they will regret ever selling it! I have regretted selling many of my cars, which all turned out to be collectors items – after I had sold them.

MG TC’s, of which I had a few, were only old bangers when I had them, 1275 Mini Clubman GT’s, Mk VII M Jaguars, MG A’s and MG B’s likewise. I have let a fortune trickle through my hands. Unfortunately, not even in my wildest dreams will my Daihatsu Mira turn into a collector’s item.

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