Concorso d'Eleganza Villa d'Este

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Cord – 812 Phaeton (1936)


Vehicle Type:
Convertible Phaeton
Coach Builder:
Central Manufacturing
Engine CC:
The JBS Collection Jack B. Smith Jr. (US)

Class A

The golden Age of Elegance: The Art Deco Era of Motor Car Design

Cord - 812 Phaeton
Class A12

There’s a truly amazing story behind the Cord. Its founder Errett Lobban Cord established this company as a holding company in 1929 with the aim of soon bundling 130 companies under this roof. They included two American cult names: Auburn and Duesenberg – at that time both of them already belonged to him. As the manufacturer, he positioned Cord between the two with an eye on the luxury class and the focus on innovative engineering such as front-wheel drive. For the first time ever, the ambitious young designer Gordon M. Buehrig introduced a vehicle front end with hideaway headlamps manufactured from the adapted landing lights of
an aircraft.

Central Manufacturing Co. based in Connersville, Indiana, produced the all-steel bodywork. This company was already part of Cord Corp. along with aircraft specialist Lycoming, which produced the V8 engines for Cord. This vehicle was manufactured as the Cord 810 in 1936 for the mythologised American flying pioneer Amelia Earhart. Just one year later, when Earhart had been reported missing, the manufacturer upgraded the car to the Cord 812 by installing a supercharger.

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