1931 Auburn 8-98 Cabriolet - SOLD
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It received a frame-off restoration sometime in the early 2000s and remains in fantastic condition today.

Beautiful older restoration in reported original colors. Great-running 269 cubic inch straight-8. Desirable convertible coupe body style with rumble seat. Outfitted for touring with rear-mounted trunk. A flashy Full Classic that’s ideal for driving events!

E.L. Cord bought Auburn in the late 1920s and immediately ordered their dealers to repaint the stodgy Auburns in flashy colors. Sales perked up and a new attitude was born at Auburn. No longer sensible sedans, Auburn was the home of flashy, fast, get-noticed cars that were still reasonably priced. You also got eight cylinders, hydraulic brakes, and some of the best styling in the industry, especially after the boattail speedsters arrived. Two-tone combinations like this beautiful 1931 Auburn convertible coupe were the norm, helping Auburn stand out in an increasingly desperate field. The Dove Gray with red accents is reportedly this car’s original color combination, ordered new by Glenn A. Squibb of Pittsburgh, PA. Mr. Squibb’s name may sound familiar, as he was the founder and CEO of the Palmolive Soap Company. It received a frame-off restoration sometime in the early 2000s and remains in fantastic condition today. There are a few minor signs of age, but the paint presents beautifully, with a great shine and impressive fit and finish throughout. The unique split lenses on the headlights were an Auburn trademark, and this car sports matching cowl lights as well as a set of desirable Pilot Ray driving lights that turn with the front wheels. Dual sidemounts give the Auburn big car presence and the rear-mounted steel trunk is useful for touring. The only notable demerit is that one of the trunk latches is broken and we have not been able to procure a replacement (it does not affect the trunk’s operation or ability to latch).

The black leather interior was restored at the same time using correct patterns. That means wide pleats, full carpets, and the fabulous instrument panel that would become an Auburn hallmark in the coming years. Big, round gauges monitor all the vitals and they’re all operational except the fuel and oil level gauges, which isn’t surprising. Auxiliary controls are underneath, including the choke, headlights, and starter knob, which you pull out to activate the starter. The extra lever behind the shifter is for the Free-Wheeling mechanism, a particularly bad idea that most automakers embraced during this period, disconnecting the engine from the wheels during coast-down. We recommend leaving it in the OFF position for safety (plus it feels weird not having any engine braking). The upholstery is in excellent condition with very little wear, and thanks to rubber floor mats, the carpets have been nicely preserved as well. Overhead there’s a black canvas convertible top that folds neatly (bring a friend!) and stows under a matching black boot that’s bereft of snaps for some reason, so use it for static display only. And, of course, there’s a rumble seat out back that’s great for kids and short trips with people you know really well.

1931 Auburns used a 269 cubic inch straight-8 built by Lycoming, a smooth, torquey powerplant that’s ideal for the Auburn’s sporting demeanor. As the nomenclature would suggest, it makes 98 horsepower, which is enough to make the convertible coupe feel energetic around town and it will cruise easily at 45-50 MPH without much strain. The comprehensive restoration is evident under the hood where you’ll find correct olive green engine enamel, an accessory oil filter, and correct fittings throughout. Use a little choke and it fires right up and idles nicely, and there’s a nice 8-cylinder burble from the tailpipe that sounds a little racy. The 3-speed manual transmission features synchromesh on 2nd and 3rd, so it’s easy to handle and there’s enough torque on tap that downshifts are usually unnecessary. By 1931, Auburns featured hydraulic brakes, so there’s good performance from the massive drums and pedal feel is more modern than its mechanical competition. You’ll note the chassis was nicely detailed at the time of restoration and shows some signs of use, but nothing significant or that would warrant attention. Instead, it’s in ideal condition for touring and other driving events where it will excel. Unusually sleek 17-inch wire wheels are painted red to match the bodywork and carry 6.00/6.50-17 Firestone wide whitewall tires of indeterminate age.

Extras include a great deal of Auburn factory literature, including manuals and service books, magazine articles, and other Auburn memorabilia. It also comes with a cache of spare parts, including a spare flywheel, flat hood ornament, and service parts. There’s also a display board with details on the car’s history.

Attractively priced, this sleek Auburn convertible coupe is an A-list celebrity wherever it goes and is an accepted Full Classic with the CCCA. That means it’s welcome just about anywhere. And there are few better clubs than the Auburn-Cord-Duesenberg Club and its sister organization, the Auburn-Cord-Duesenberg Museum in Auburn, Indiana. Attending one of the ACD homecoming events is worth owning this car all by itself. Find out why these cars are so beloved—great road manners, dynamite looks, and surprising comfort. Call today!

Harwood Motors always recommends and welcomes personal or professional inspections of any vehicle in our inventory prior to purchase.

Vehicle: 1931 Auburn 8-98 Cabriolet
Price: SOLD
Stock Number: 120012
Odometer Reading: 15,018
VIN: 36163F
Engine: 269 cubic inch straight-8
Transmission: 3-speed manual
Gear Ratio: 4.54
Wheelbase: 127 inches
Wheels: 17-inch wire wheels
Tires: 6.00/6.50-17 Firestone wide whitewall
Exterior Color: Dove Gray over Red
Interior Color: Black leather
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