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1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype Town Car / 3150069 Vehicle Information

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype photograph

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype
Sold for $231,000 at 2007 Vintage Motor Car Auction at Meadow Brook Hall.
In the post-World War II era, it was not uncommon for cars to be sent to custom coachbuilders to be bodied with unique designs constructed to meet the needs and desires of the customers. Pierce Arrow sent many of their chassis's to Brunn because they were located in Buffalo, New York. One of their more elegant and memorable creations was the Metropolitan Town Car of 1936 which carried a price tag of $5,795 when outfitted with the twelve cylinder engine. It was the highest priced Pierce-Arrow in 1936.

As 1936 came to a close, Pierce-Arrow sent a V12 Limousine with the divider window and a 147-inch wheelbase to the Durham Body Company of Rosemont, Pennsylvania. It is believed that this prototype was possibly a replacement for the Metropolitan Town Car in 1937 but this would never come to fruition. As a result, this is the only example in existence.

This car features a cut-out section from its roof over the chauffeur's compartment. The windshield was raised by three inches. The front door skins and door glass were made and the rear quarter windows were removed using sheet steel. The rear trunk was cut out and replaced by a trunk rack.

This vehicles first owner was Charles Walker of Manchester, MA. It was purchased by John Grossman after the Second World War who paid a mere $400. He kept the car for a year and sold it to Bob Flynn of Lexington, MA. It later appeared in the New York Times for sale for $350. Ownership passed through several owners throughout the years and during that time was treated to a restoration that took seven years to complete. After which it was shown at numerous shows and even achieved an AACA Junior First at Hershey in 1986. The following year it earned its AACA First Senior award.

This 1936 Pierce Arrow Town Car Prototype was offered for sale at the 2007 RM Auctions held at Meadow Brook. It was estimated to sell for $175,000 - $225,000. The car is powered by a 462 cubic-inch V12 side-valve engine capable of producing 185 horsepower. The engine is mated to a three-speed manual gearbox and there are four-wheel vacuum assisted drum brakes. It is the only example known to exist and an excellent example of Derham's quality, creativity, and craftsmanship. This beautiful machine exceeded the estimated value, selling for an impressive $231,000 including buyers premium.


By Daniel Vaughan | Feb 2010
Sold for $231,000 at 2007 Vintage Motor Car Auction at Meadow Brook Hall.
In the 1930s Pierce-Arrow was in poor shape financially, struggling like most luxury car makers. Yet they continued to update their models and introduced new ones in 1936. This car has a custom-built prototype town car body by Derham which was created by extensive modifications of a limousine with divider window that was sent to Derham. It has been speculated that this prototype was intended to become a new 1937 model replacing the Metropolitan Town Car, but this never happened and the Metropolitan continued in 1937. Thus, this car was the only one produced making it a 'one of a kind.'

Its model 1603 chassis has a 147 inch wheelbase; a 462 cubic-inch V12 engine producing 185 horsepower; a 3-speed synchromesh transmission with overdrive and freewheeling; and vacuum assisted power brakes. It had one of the heaviest and strongest frames of any car, and Pierce Arrow claimed that their cars were 'the safest in the world.' In spite of the new models for 1936 sales sharply declined and by 1938 the company was insolvent and liquidated.

The first recorded owner registered this car as a 1937; however, its engine number shows it is a 1936 and the second to last V-12 built that year.


2007 Vintage Motor Car Auction at Meadow Brook Hall

Pre-Auction Estimates :
USD $175,000-USD $225,000 
Sale Price :
USD $231,000

Recent Sales

(Data based on Model Year 1936 sales)
1936 Pierce Arrow Town Car Prototype
Sold for USD$231,000
  2007 Vintage Motor Car Auction at Meadow Brook Hall
1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype image  1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype image  

Vehicles That Failed To Sell

1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype's that have appeared at auction but did not sell.
VehicleChassisEventHigh BidEst. LowEst. High

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1936 Pierce-Arrow Town Car Prototype

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