Supercharged Convertible Phaeton Sedan
Chassis Num: 17834
Sold for $192,500 at 2011 RM Sothebys.
E.L. Cord's, Cord Corporation, was noted for innovative, sometimes extreme, designs incorporating the newest ideas and technologies. In almost every way, each of Cord's automobiles were more like concept cars than what would be considered regular production cars. Perhaps no single Cord design reflects the company's and Cord's own approach to car making than the Cord Model 812.

The designers at Cord managed to take shapes like arcs and rectangles and create something radical, and yet, that looked so good. And the 812 is perhaps the most extreme adaptation. Minimal was not in the company's vocabulary.

E.L. Cord had been able to rescue Auburn Automobile Company, and then, negotiated the purchase of Duesenberg in 1926. That wasn't enough for Cord. He wanted to have his own car manufacturer that would produce his kind of automobiles. Therefore, later on in 1926, Cord launched the car company bearing his own name.

Using Lycoming engines (another company Cord had purchased), in only three years after coming into existence, Cord produced its L-29. The car was designed to ride low to the ground and was a beautifully designed coupe. It ended up winning the Monaco Concours d'Elegance in 1930. Besides offering custom coachwork, the L-29 introduced the automotive world to an important feature that would be all but standard by the late 1980s. Cord's L-29 was the first American automobile to offer front-wheel drive. After over 5,000 L-29s were built, production ceased at the end of 1931.

Cord decided not to merely re-fashion the L-29, but instead, decided to start over. Debuted at the New York Auto Show in 1935, Cord's new 810, with its expressive shapely lines, belonged more in the world of concept car than regular production model. In and of itself, the car was truly ahead of its time. It incorporated many features that wouldn't be all available in one car for nearly another thirty years.

The brain-child of Gordon Buehrig, the 810 and 812 were part science-fiction and a designer's unlimited imagination. The Cord 810 and 812 were real over-the-top works of art. While the L-29 shared a refined look similar to Cord's other company, Duesenberg, the 810 was a radical departure, more-akin to what a teenager of the time would design.

The 810 introduced more innovations that were ahead of its day. Hidden on the front side of the voluptuous front wheel Pontoon fenders were the car's pop-up headlights. Though offered on a DeSoto during the 1940s, the pop-up headlight wouldn't really become available until the 1960s.

Another of the aerodynamics features that made the 810 out-of-this-world and ahead of its time, was the position of the door hinges on the inside of the car so they did not protrude on the outside. The hood, too, was changed. Most designs of the day had hinged panels that opened from either side of the engine bay. The 810 incorporated a hinge located at the back of the bay near the passenger compartment. This meant the entire hood lifted up. In addition to these innovation design features, the 810 also had variable-speed windshield wipers and a standard radio. A car in those days even having a windshield wiper was a big deal, let alone one that was variable speed. And a standard radio wouldn't even be offered in cars until the 1950s.

Besides the large Pontoon fenders, equally attracting one's attention was what became known as the 'coffin nose'. What essentially is one heavily rounded rectangle based shape, the nose/engine bay sports a wrap-around grille and highly-polished exhausts pouring out of the side of the engine cowling. Inside the passenger compartment, the Phaeton model housed a three-person back seat, whereas, the convertible version used this space for storage of the top.

The only major difference between the 810 and 812 was the inclusion of supercharging. On the 812 a supercharger was included that boosted horsepower to 170 bhp, although it was known to actually produced between 185 and 195 bhp.

The car offered for auction this year was a 1937 model 812, and therefore, one of only about 700. Being a supercharged Phaeton, it is believed this car is one of just 134 produced by Cord. The car has been part of a private collection for many years and just recently went through restoration. Finished in black and accented by highly polished chrome and white-walled tires, this impressive 812 was expected to fetch between $150,000 and $200,000.

Its interior is finished in red leather and is accented in black trim and an etched metal dash. It sports the 812's four-speed pre-selector transmission. It has a transverse leaf spring front suspension via trailing link. This 812 has a trailing arm front axle and a live rear axle. It makes use of four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes for its stopping power.

The supercharged 812s boasted superlative performance. When combined with the magnificent design and innovative features, the 812 provides an experience way beyond its years. Though Cord's car company went out of business, it paved the way for the future. And the 812 truly stretched the limits of automotive design and innovation.

'Buy: View Lots (Lot 245: 1937 Cord 812 SC Phaeton)', ( RM Auction Arizona. Retrieved 11 January 2011.

Wikipedia contributors, 'Cord Automobile', Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 20 December 2010, 12:57 UTC, accessed 11 January 2011

By Jeremy McMullen

Chassis# 17834

2011 Automobiles of Arizona by RM Auctions
Estimated Value:$150,000-$200,000 
Sale Price$192,500


Chassis number 17834 Auction Sales History

2017 11
2016 11
2015 13
2014 10
2013 10
2012 11
2011 9
2010 10
2009 12
2008 5

YearAvg. SaleHigh Sale# of Sales

Recent Sales

1937 Cord 812 Supercharged Phaeton
Chassis#:Chassis#:812 32269 H
Sold for $211,750
  2017 RM Sothebys : Hershey
1937 Cord 812 Cabriolet
Chassis#:Chassis#:812 1256 F
Sold for $134,750
  2017 RM Sothebys : Hershey
1937 Cord 812 Supercharged Cabriolet
Chassis#:Chassis#:812 32023 F
Sold for $412,500
  2017 RM Sothebys : Hershey
1937 Cord 812 Phaeton
Sold for $96,250
  2017 The Auburn Auction : Worldwide Auctioneers
1937 Cord 812 Sportsman Convertible Coupe Replica
Sold for $57,750
  2017 Auctions America : Auburn Fall
Sold for $70,000
  2017 Leake - Tulsa
1937 Cord 812 Beverly Sedan
Sold for $38,000
  2017 Mecum : Indianapolis
1937 Cord 812 SC Phaeton
Sold for $176,000
  2017 Worldwide Auctioneers: Texas Classic Auction
1937 Cord 812 Westchester
Sold for $62,150
  2017 Branson Collector Car Auction
1937 Cord 812 Supercharged Cabriolet
Chassis#:812 31762 F
Sold for $302,500
  2017 RM Auctions : Amelia Island
1937 Cord 812 Supercharged Phaeton
Chassis#:Chassis#:812 32013 H
Sold for $220,000
  2017 RM Sotheby's : Arizona Auction
1937 Cord Beverly 812
Sold for $101,672
  2016 Collector Car - Toronto Fall Classic
Sold for $93,500
  2016 Barrett-Jackson : Las Vegas
1937 Cord 812 Westchester
Chassis#:Chassis#:812 31874 A
Sold for $55,000
  2016 RM Sotheby's : Hershey
1937 Cord 812 Supercharged Phaeton
Sold for $236,500
  2016 Auctions America : Auburn Fall
1937 Cord 812 S/C Phaeton
Sold for $269,500
  2016 Gooding & Company : Pebble Beach
1937 Cord 812 Custom Beverly
Chassis#:812 10180 S
Sold for $132,000
  2016 RM Sotheby's : Motor City
1937 Cord 812 SC Phaeton
Chassis#:Chassis#:32047 H
Sold for $220,000
  2016 Worldwide Auctions - The Houston Classic
Sold for $52,800
  2016 Barrett-Jackson : Palm Beach
1937 Cord 812 Custom Roadster
Sold for $48,400
  2016 Gooding & Company : The Amelia Island Auction

No Sale

1937 Cord 812's that have appeared at auction but did not sell.
VehicleChassisEventHigh BidEst. LowEst. High
1937 Cord 812 Phaeton812 1155 H2017 Auctions America : Auburn Fall $165,000$185,000
1937 Cord 812 Westchester Sedan1471A2017 Mecum : Monterey$55,000  
1937 Cord 812 Beverly 4dr Sedan1704A2017 Motostalgia : Amelia Island $65,000$90,000
1937 Cord 812 Convertible PhaetonFB19972017 Motostalgia : Amelia Island $165,000$200,000
1937 Cord 812 SC Sportsman Convertible Coupe8121163F2017 Worldwide Auctioneers : Scottsdale, AZ $175,000$225,000
1937 Cord 812 Sportsman8121163F2016 Mecum : Monterey$120,000  
1937 Cord 812 Phaeton1339H2016 The Finest : Aspen $120,000$140,000
1937 CORD 812 SUPERCHARGED SPORTSMAN31631F2015 Bonhams : The Frederiksen Auction $1,000,000$2,000,000
1937 Cord 812 Custom Beverly Sedan 2015 Auctions America Auburn Fall$75,000  
1937 Cord Beverly Supercharged Sedan 2015 Auctions America Auburn Fall$40,000  
1937 Cord 812 Sportsman Convertible Coupe 2015 Auctions America Auburn Fall$140,000  
1937 Cord 812 Custom Roadster 2015 Auctions America Auburn Fall$62,500  
1937 Cord Beverly Sedan SC Compresseur31959 S2015 R√©tromobile by Artcurial Motorcars $75,000$85,000
1937 CORD 812 PHAETON31735F2014 BarrettJackson, Las Vegas   
1937 Cord 812 Supercharged Phaeton32419H2014 Bonhams : Goodwood Revival $120,000$150,000
1937 Cord 812 Phaeton 2014 Mecum : Indianapolis$132,500  
1937 CORD 812 PHAETON31735F2014 BarrettJackson : Palm Beach   
1937 Cord 812 Cabriolet812 2214 F2014 RM Auctions Amelia Island $90,000$120,000
1937 Cord 812 S/C Sportsman32420F2014 Gooding & Company Amelia Island Sale $250,000$350,000
1937 Cord 812 Phaeton812 1339 H2014 RM Auctions Automobiles of Arizona$150,000  
1937 Cord 812 Beverly1677 S2014 Gooding & Company The Scottsdale Auction $60,000$80,000
1937 Cord 812 Westchester Sedan 2013 Auctions America Auburn Fall$36,500  
1937 Cord Replica 2012 Mecum Auctions Kissimmee Florida$70,000  
1937 Cord 812 SC Phaeton 2012 Mecum Auctions Kissimmee Florida$200,000  
1937 Cord Beverly32410S2012 Russo and Steele Scottsdale   
1937 Cord Street Rod 2011 Mecum Kansas City, MO$60,000  
1937 Cord 812 SC Phaeton Convertible 2011 Mecum Kansas City, MO$125,000  
1937 Cord Model 812 Custom 2011 Branson Collector Car Auction Oct 22, 2011$50,000  
1937 Cord 812 Phaeton32010A2011 RM Auctions Hershey$100,000$120,000$150,000
1937 CORD SPORTSMAN 2011 Auctions America Auburn Fall Auction$210,000$225,000$275,000


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