Lot 2139

Auburn Fall 2019

1931 Auburn Phaeton

The Ed Meurer Collection


$70,400 USD | Sold

United States | Auburn, Indiana



Identification No.
  • Nicely presented in striking colors
  • Classic Car Club of America (CCCA) Full Classic
  • Ideal for touring

While the American automobile industry’s development in its formative years had been guided by the inventor/engineer, its progress between the wars was shaped not so much by technicians as by entrepreneurs. One such was Auburn boss Errett Lobban Cord. When Cord joined Auburn as general manager in 1924, the company was in the doldrums, making more cars than it could sell and heading for bankruptcy. After some Cord-inspired restyling, Auburn sales picked up, and the stage was set for the creation of a glorious new automotive empire.

Nineteen thirty-one was a banner year for the company. It marked the first of the stylish sweeping-fender, long-hood Auburns, a design that was used through 1933. Of the many body styles put forward, the convertible phaeton sedan, priced at a quite reasonable $1,345, was undoubtedly regarded as the top-of-the-line offering. The Auburn Phaetons featured exclusive options, including roll-up windows and removable center pillars for a tight seal with the top raised.

Offered here is a beautifully presented example of just such an Auburn. The car is nicely optioned with dual side-mounted spare wheels, an accessory trunk and rack, Pilot Ray lamps, and dual chrome horns and driving lamps. The interior is beautifully trimmed and nicely complements its exceptional maroon-and-champagne exterior finish, which is further accented by chrome bumpers, chrome spoke wheels with wide whitewall tires, beautifully restored factory-applied custom trim, and stately tan cloth convertible top. In addition to its good looks, this car is also said to run, shift, and drive with smoothness and a quiet not often associated with cars of this era. Its 98-horsepower inline eight-cylinder engine easily propels the car smoothly down the road and with surprisingly good acceleration.

The history of the car is known to the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Club, and it is said to have been restored some years ago by a father-son team of ACD members. It then passed to the noted collector Gene Leadbetter before finding its way into the Meurer Collection, under whose care the car won Best in Show at the 2006 Bay Harbor Concours.

Because of the significance Auburns represent, all eight-cylinder examples are recognized as CCCA Full Classics and are eligible for all events held by the Classic Car Club of America. A fine driving example certain to impress on long CCCA CARavan tours, yet also appropriate for inclusion at any Concours d'Elegance, the Auburn is a supremely desirable addition to any discerning collection of fine Classic motor cars.