1936 Auburn Boattail Speedster

1936 Auburn Boattail Speedster

The Auburn Car Company was in business for four decades, but its height came at the end, with the Boattail Speedster. This model was made for only two years, the first one in 1935, and there were only minor modifications on the 1936 model.  The Boattail Speedster was designed after the company had to shift away from 12-cylinder cars.

They redesigned into a straight eight cylinder model that was supercharged with a Schweitzer-Cummins aspiration system. This, with two valves per cylinder, allowed the carburation system to produce a lot more power, cranking out 150 horsepower at 4000 rpm.  The engine itself was 280 cubic inches with a bore of 3.06 inches and a stroke of 4.75 inches.

This was one of the few true sports cars of the pre-war era. It sold new for $2,245, which was still affordable to some even during the Depression.  E.L. Cord was credited with designing a larger, flowing design that made the Auburn unique in appearance, in addition to it being a performance car.

Even though it was a fast car for its day, it was also big. The car was made of steel, and used 6.5 x 15 inch tires. The car weighed in at 3746 pounds with a 127 inch wheel base. It’s front track was 58 inches, while the rear track was 62 inches, which gave the rear a boat-like appearance, hence the name. The Auburn Speedster was 194 inches long, 71 inches wide and 58 inches tall.

The car had a three-speed manual transmission, and would go from zero to 60 in 15 seconds, which was quick for its time. The car also had a top speed of 140 miles per hour, which was almost unheard of in the late 30s.   In 1936 while this was the height of the Auburn vehicles, it was also the end, as the company stopped production in 1937.

1936 Auburn Boattail Speedster Photos:

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1932 Auburn V-12 Speedsteer

1932 Auburn V12 Speedsteer

The 1932 Auburn V-12 Speedster was a classic beauty that was people of the time were afraid to buy because there was a thought that the low sticker price meant less quality. This was not at all the case as this perfection of machinery weighed in just below 5,000 pounds and could reach a top speed of 99 mph. What was even more incredible about this beauty was the fact that it was built for high speed cruising. Indeed the purchasers were receiving an excellent value for the $975 investment.

1932 Auburn V-12 Speedsteer Hood OrnamentBuilt for speed and comfort, the 1932 Auburn V-12 Speedster was designed for fast acceleration and incorporated a number of features distinguishing the car from its competitors. The steel body was built on top of a type x ladder frame. Semi-elliptic springs with hydraulic shocks and a rigid axle maintained suspension.

The speedster boasted a Dual ratio three speed manual gearbox. A lever at the dash allowed the driver to switch from a low to high ratio in each of the three gears. The gears were able to be changed when traveling at speeds below 40 mph. This differential of 4.5 and 3.0 allowed the car to operate more efficiently and burn less fuel and oil. Close to 6.5 liters were displaced by this massive engine, and with 160 bhp at 3500 rpm, the ride was sweet.

This automobile was a symbol of speed, elegance, and forward thinking. It took the best of features available in the automotive industry and combined them to give a stunning vehicle. The production of this classic is just over 2000 in total, but in every aspect, it is deserving of the classic label. It incorporated ideas before their time, and kept the needs of the driver in view. From sleek design to outstanding performance, this machine is something to marvel at.

1932 Auburn V-12 Speedsteer Photo Gallery


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1935 Auburn Supercharged Cabriolet

The 1935-36 Auburn Supercharged Cabriolet is arguably one of the most desirable and drivable cars of the Classic Era. The redesign accomplished by Gordon Buehrig were the hit of the 1935 Auto Salons. Their Art Deco styling and streamlined appearance give the cars an unmatched among their peers. The art deco styling was imagined by Gordon Buehrig an was the talk of the Auto Salons in the mid 1930’s.  These cars have it all-a fully synchronized gearbox- dual ratio rear end-Powerful supercharged straight 8 Lycoming engine- 3 position top- outside exhaust, and of course drop dead styling by the legendary Gordon Buehrig. Actually the cabriolet is rarer than the Speedster- only 40 or so were built and around 25 are known to have survived, these cars are the next best thing to a Speedster and you can actually take along some passengers and some luggage. Auburns are bulletproof mechanically, and drive like a modern car. You will have no problem on interstate highways- you can drive 70 MPH all day long.

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