Lot 449

Hershey 2023

1933 Auburn Twelve Salon Phaeton


$225,000 - $275,000 USD | Not Sold

United States Flag | Hershey, Pennsylvania



Serial No.
12165 1147 H
Engine No.
BB 2152
Body No.
US Title
  • A genuine Salon model; one of the most desirable multi-cylinder cars of its era
  • Formerly owned by Dr. Elwood “Bud” Greist and Andy Granatelli
  • Well-preserved older restoration in striking colors
  • Recent full mechanical freshening including rebuilds of the fuel and brake systems
  • Recognized by the CCCA as a Full Classic

To improve sales of its smooth, powerful 12-cylinder model in the face of the Great Depression, Indiana automaker Auburn introduced a Salon version for 1933. The Salon was built on its own specially strengthened chassis with adjustable vacuum-boosted brakes and sported numerous unique design features, including a racing-inspired V-shaped grille smoothly blended into the hood line, unique headlamp lenses, fenders edged in chrome, and the iconic and widely copied “ribbon” bumpers. These were inarguably some of the most beautiful Auburns ever built, as well as among the most expensive and luxurious, and are today among the most desired by collectors. They are also scarce; the model was produced only for 1933, although retitled leftovers were subsequently sold into 1934.

The Twelve Salon Phaeton offered here was one of the first Auburns to have its body built by the Limousine Body Company, supplier of the company’s convertible coachwork after the firm was relocated to Connersville, Indiana. Its ownership history has been traced back to the late 1940s, when the phaeton was owned by Arthur Patterson of Daly City in Northern California. Mr. Patterson eventually sold the car to early enthusiast Marshall Hughes of Kansas City after which it passed to Richard Carrington of Nebraska. It then traded hands, through Auburn Twelve guru Mort Kresteller, to the late Dr. Elwood “Bud” Greist of Livermore, California, a surgeon and vineyard owner with a passion for Auburn and Cord automobiles.

Dr. Greist painstakingly restored this Twelve over many years, beginning in the late 1970s and continuing through the late 1980s, with the car shown in-process at several Auburn Cord Duesenberg Club West Coast Meets. At its completion, the car was an award-winner at Pebble Beach in 1987, and subsequently judged Best Auburn at the West Coast Meet in 1990 and Best of Show at the annual Silverado Concours. Dr. Greist subsequently sold his Auburn in 1991 to the colorful and ebullient Andy Granatelli, of STP and Indianapolis racing fame, who was then amassing a small collection of Classics at his home in Florida. The car then passed through two scrupulous owners before being acquired by the consignor in 2022. Under the care of the consignor’s highly experienced in-house restoration staff, the Auburn was treated to a full mechanical freshening. Noted work included recoring the radiator at a cost of over $6,000 as well as fully rebuilding the carburetors, fuel system, and brake system.

Now well sorted and ready for enjoyment, this stunning Auburn Twelve Salon is ready to make its long-awaited return to the podium at any number of concours events.