Lot 249

Amelia Island 2017

1937 Cord 812 Supercharged Cabriolet


$302,500 USD | Sold

United States Flag | Amelia Island, Florida



Serial No.
812 31762 F
Engine No.
FC 2575
Body No.
C 92 270
  • The finest restored supercharged 812 ‘Sportsman’ in existence
  • Auburn Cord Duesenberg (ACD) Club National Reunion Best of Show winner
  • Two-time Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance Best in Class winner
  • Formerly the personal car of and restored by marque specialist Tom Dudley
  • ACD Club Certified Category One (C-392)

190 bhp, 288 cu. in. supercharged L-head V-8 engine, four-speed pre-selector manual transmission, independent front suspension, rear semi-elliptical suspension with leaf springs, and four-wheel hydraulic brakes. Wheelbase: 125 in.

Known history of this Cord cabriolet begins with Mark Blaisdell of New York, from whom it was acquired in 1995 by Tom Dudley of Howell, Michigan. A longtime, active Auburn Cord Duesenberg Club member and passionate Cord enthusiast, Mr. Dudley has restored numerous award-winning examples for himself and other enthusiasts, and he is known for his superb craftsmanship and attention to detail. This particular cabriolet, as his personal car, he endeavored to make the absolute best that it could be, including exhaustive research with other Cord authorities into the fit, finish, and specifications of every last component.

Identification of the car as a 1937 model allowed for preservation of that year’s distinctive features, such as the notched wheel housings, dashboard defroster plates, and tubular cowl braces. Further distinctive and correct features, including the locking glove box, small oval rear window, and the woven wire hood screens, not always faithfully researched by other restorers, were all accurately recreated.

While the car’s body was undoubtedly a true cabriolet, its identity, as well as its original engine and stub frame, had unfortunately been lost. Accordingly, the car was given a proper supercharged 812 serial number, stamped on a new firewall plate and corresponding with the number of its replacement stub frame, and a body number that is not shared with any other extant cabriolet. A replacement factory-supercharged engine and transmission were acquired separately, rebuilt, and installed. Records in the ACD Club’s Certification file for the car show the attention to detail, including correspondence with Cord authorities Ron Irwin and Don Mates, as correct parts and componentry were acquired from all over the country.

The restored Rich Maroon Cord made its debut at the ACD Club’s National Reunion in 2007, the most prestigious nationwide competition for these cars. At the Reunion it was inspected by the Club’s Certification team, and was subsequently entered into judging. Reportedly the only flaw found by the judges was the use of rubber, rather than metal, valve stem covers! By the end of the weekend it had spectacularly triumphed, winning not only the Gordon Buehrig Trophy for Best 810/812 Cord, but also the Harold Ames Trophy for Best of Show. Several months later it was approved for the Club’s Category One Certification.

Having accomplished the most prestigious award possible with the car in its first time out, Mr. Dudley elected to sell the Cord thereafter, and it was acquired by the current owner, a longtime enthusiast, in whose care it has been maintained to the same extremely high standard. It has also continued its winning ways with Best in Class at the Amelia Island Concours in both 2009 and 2015 and at the Ault Park Concours in 2014, as well as the President’s Choice Award at the 2015 Lake Mirror Classic.

Restored to a standard that few examples of the fabled ‘Sportsman’ have ever achieved, this is undoubtedly the highest-quality restored Cord cabriolet yet offered. It will continue to be a star for a fortunate new owner.