Lot 180

Hershey 2014

1951 Frazer Manhattan Convertible


$41,250 USD | Sold

United States Flag | Hershey, Pennsylvania



Chassis No.
  • Believed to be the pilot production car shown at the 1951 Chicago Auto Show
  • Known history, including extensive documentation
  • Less than 66,000 original miles

115 hp, 226.2 cu. in. Supersonic L-head Continental six-cylinder engine, Hydra-Matic automatic transmission, independent front coil-spring suspension, semi-elliptic rear leaf-spring suspension, and four-wheel mechanical drum brakes. Wheelbase: 123.5 in.

For what would turn out to be its final year, the Frazer was given a complete restyle not shared with its sister Kaiser, which ultimately made the 1951 Frazer a rare model when new. All Frazers were essentially hand-built at Kaiser-Frazer’s Willow Run facility, which was necessitated by the fitting of either the unusual four-door hardtop roof or the convertible architecture. Interiors were swathed in leather that was befitting of a luxury automobile. Hydraulic power windows and a convertible top were included, and most cars, including this example, were optioned with GM’s Hydra-Matic transmission.

This particular Frazer is serial number 002, and it is believed to have been one of the two pilot cars built for the 1951 Chicago Auto Show. According to the owner, the car was returned to Willow Run upon the close of the show, and it spent many years as Henry J. Kaiser’s personal car in Michigan and Hawaii. It still bears the Hawaii driving sticker, dated 1962, in the lower right corner of the windshield.

The car was later sold to an owner in Texas, where it resided until 1989, when it was again sold to a collector in Maryland, who stored the car for some years. The car has never been completely restored, but some paintwork has been done, and the car has only been freshened when needed. The chrome was recently redone. The Frazer has always been properly stored, as evidenced by its remarkable condition. The odometer reads 65,955 miles at the time of cataloguing, which are believed to be original.

The car is well known by Kaiser-Frazer enthusiasts, and it comes complete with much documentation, including factory correspondence, owner’s and shop manuals, and other period Kaiser-Frazer memorabilia.