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.