Graham-Paige was formed by the three Graham brothers - Joseph, Robert and Ray - in 1927. They had been making kits to modify Ford Model Ts and TTs into trucks, which led them to make their own trucks. They purchased the Paige-Detroit Motor Company to start their automobile venture.
Like many American automobile companies, Graham exported automobiles to Europe. This Graham was shipped to Switzerland in 1937 as a chassis and received a body designed and built by the coach building firm Worblaufen. Worblaufen typically built custom bodies for expensive makes like Mercedes, Bugatti, Alfa Romeo, and Isotta-Fraschini. This is the only Graham body and interior they created.
The 116 Series was built on a 116-inch wheelbase chassis and was powered by a six-cylinder, supercharged engine that provided an exciting ride. Other premium carmakers of the day were adding more cylinders with V-12 and V-16 configurations to get more horsepower but Graham chose to supercharge their engines, first an eight-cylinder, then this six.
This Graham remained in Europe for its entire life, until acquired in 2007 by the current owner from a dealer in Switzerland who proceeded to perform a complete, body-off restoration.
Graham introduced its supercharged models in 1934. The Great Depression was in full swing, as was the cylinder wars. Cadillac and Marmon both have V-16 cars, and many other manufacturers were offering high-horsepower Twelve and Eight cylinder cars.
Graham originally used only the supercharger on the 8-cylinder models. By 1936, the supercharger was adapted to the 6-cylinder engine. The Model 116 was one of the models with the supercharged version of the six-cylinder engine, and it had a wheelbase that measured 116-inches.
By Daniel Vaughan | Sep 2009