Category Archives: cars

Gary Cooper’s Duesenberg SSJ


1935 Duesenberg Special Speedster Model J; Photo credit: Gooding & Co.

The ’35 Duesenberg SSJ was the fastest pre-WWII production road car, with speeds reaching 140mph in 1935. It is powered by a supercharged 420 cubic inch DOHC eight cylinder, which produced 400 HP.


The Duesenberg Straight Eight; Photo credit Gooding & Co.

This incredible vehicle went up for auction this past weekend during the famed Monterey Car Week. Gary Cooper once owned this SSJ; it was one of several Duesenbergs the actor owned during his lifetime. The Duesenberg was eventually bought by road racer , car manufacturer and America’s Cup winner, Briggs Cunningham. The Cunningham collection was bought by Miles Collier. It is Collier and the REVS Institute that is auctioning the car.


The Duesenberg SSJ at REVS Institute; Photo credit: Circle-to-Circle

I had the opportunity to see this famed Duesenberg at the REVS Institute, when the Frozen Foursome visited Tampa in April of 2016. It really is a remarkable machine. Absolutely stunning, with beautiful lines. Even today, it must be something very special to drive.


The Duesenberg’s cockpit at the REVS Institute; Photo credit: CtoC

The Duesenberg SSJ was sold at the Pebble Beach Auction for $22 million. At that price, the Duesenberg becomes the most expensive American made car ever sold at auction. It also became the most expensive pre-WWII model ever sold.

There were only two Duesenberg SSJ’s ever built. The second car was owned by actor Clark Gable.

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1962 Ferrari 250 GTO; Photo credit: Sotheby’s

A 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO was also up for auction at Pebble Beach. Ferrari made thirty-six 250 GTO’s. The Ferrari sold for a staggering $48.4 million. At that price, the 250 GTO becomes the most expensive car ever sold at auction.


Austin Gipsy


1967 Austin Gipsy G4M10 4×4

The Gipsy was produced by Austin from 1958 to 1968. It replaced the Austin Champ, and was expected to compete with the Land Rover.

The Gipsy is very Roveresque, right down to the individual Lucas wiper motors and the black, red and yellow lever knobs. It’s also a sparse interior, with inward facing rear seats, although the Gipsy does have a door on its glovebox. Unlike the Series Land Rover, the Gipsy body was steel, instead of aluminum.

This particular Gipsy comes with a very nice Turner winch. I do like the look of the Austin’s front end.

Originally available in a 90″ wheelbase, a longer 111″ wheelbase was later added. British Motor Corporation, which Austin was a division of, merged with British Leyland in May of 1968. Suddenly Land Rover and Austin found themselves with the same manufacturer, and Austin’s Gipsy was discontinued.

The Gipsy was powered by a 2.2L inline four engine, originally used in Austin’s A70 sedan. In all, 21,208 Gipsys were produced over its decade long run.


Your father’s Suburban


1948 DeSoto Suburban

DeSoto built the long wheel based Suburban from 1946 through 1954.

This particular Suburban was purchased new in Connecticut and used by the Mount Washington Hotel of Bretton Woods, NH.

The car had several variations over it’s nine year run. I do like the suicide doors.

Complete with third row seating.

This particular DeSoto is powered by a 236ci Flathead straight six, coupled to DeSoto’s Tip-Toe Shift, which was their version of the semi-automatic transmission.


Adventure Safari


Fastback

VW Fastback


Minneapolis Auto Show


1948 Chevrolet Official Indianapolis 500 Pace Car

Spent some time with A Sponsor and two of his low level employees at the Auto Show that is taking place in downtown Minneapolis.

It should come as no surprise to anyone, that the classic car section was my favorite part of the show. Not counting the mini-donuts.


VW Double Cab Transporter


A wonderful Diamond T


Brit’s Pub, an Auto Show Tradition


Pony