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Hershey | Lot 378

1934 Lincoln Model KB Convertible Sedan by Dietrich

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$286,000 USD | Sold

United States | Hershey, Pennsylvania

12 October 2018


Chassis No.
KB 3434
Engine No.
KB 3434
  • Offered from a prominent private collection
  • Formerly of the renowned Jack Passey Lincoln collection
  • One of 25 examples built in this beautiful “semi-custom” style
  • Concours-quality restoration of a longtime California car
  • Classic Car Club of America (CCCA) Primary First Place winner

The KB, as the “ultimate” Lincoln, could be had as a 145-in. chassis for custom coachwork, but many coachworks took advantage of the “semi-custom” offerings that were produced for Lincoln by the East Coast’s finest custom coachbuilders and catalogued by the factory. Among the most attractive designs was style no. 281, a convertible sedan designed by the legendary Raymond Dietrich, with his distinctive, opening vee’d windshield and superb proportions. Just 25 examples of this model were produced.

The example offered here was acquired in the 1950s by the late, great Lincoln collector, longtime Pebble Beach Concours judge, and friend to many, Jack Passey, from a fellow enthusiast in Modesto, California. In 2014, Mr. Passey recalled that when he acquired “3434 from ’34,” it had a tow bar attached to the rear bumper, and he used it to pull home several other “finds” without difficulty. He eventually passed the car to a fellow collector and judge, Bill Smith, at which point it was still original and, as can be seen from its tow duties, in very solid and nicely running condition.

Smith conducted a concours-quality restoration over a three-year period, which ended up being a frame-off process that encompassed the chassis, body, powertrain, upholstery, and top. The bulk of the effort was carried out in his own shop, with engine work by Ellsworth Machine, of Palo Alto, California; paint by Avenue Auto Body, of San Carlos; and upholstery by Bill Debuque, of Cooks Upholstery in Redwood City. After the Lincoln’s completion in 2010, it went on to receive two 1st in Class awards at West Coast shows. In previous ownership it was also awarded a CCCA Primary First Place in 2016 and is now eligible to be shown in the Senior division.

The car’s previous owners rebuilt the carburetor and fuel pump, had the gauges rebuilt, installed a new top and boot, had the footrest for the rear compartment reproduced to the correct original design, and located and installed a correct, virtually impossible-to-source trunk. The owner notes that all gauges work and the car runs and drives well, and has been enjoyable on the road while being maintained to a high standard. It is offered with an original instruction book, reproduction service bulletins, recent service and maintenance records, and a second set of keys.

This is a lovely example of the Full Classic Lincoln, in one of the best body styles, with superb known provenance and a wonderful presentation.

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