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Auburn History

1935 Auburn Model 851

Chassis number : 851 33734 E

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Sold for $891,000 at 2021 RM Sothebys : Hershey.
A powerful Lycoming straight-8 engine, a Columbia two-speed rear axle, light body weight, and aerodynamic styling made the Auburn Speedster a snappy performer by any standard. E.L. Cord's automotive empire was built on niche marketing with a flair for the dramatic and an emphasis on innovation and high performance, all of which are certainly epitomized in this exquisite example.

The 1935 and 1936 Speedsters were designed by Gordon Buehrig and they featured curvaceous bodywork with a straight hood line traversing back from the radiator to a steeply vee'd windshield, down between pontoon fenders, over sloping doors, and descending to the rear bumper. The rear end outlined by chrome and striping was the source of its nickname, 'the Boattail.'

Beneath the bonnet was an Auburn straight-eight engine which initially developed 115 horsepower, but with the help of a Schwitzer-Cummins blower and chrome side exhaust pipes, output was boosted to 150 bhp. The power was handled by a Columbia dual-ratio rear axle which was standard equipment on the supercharged models. This setup allowed for two ratios for each gear, one lone and one high. The ratios could be changed as often as desired while at very low speeds or at a stop by moving the switch in the center of the steering wheel.

A plaque on the dashboard proudly declared, 'This certifies that this AUBURN AUTOMOBILE has been driven 100.8 miles per hour before shipment.' It was signed by David 'Ab' Jenkins, the speed-record driver who achieved some of his greatest successes at Bonneville behind the wheel of a late Auburn speedster.

The history of this Speedster dates back to the early 1950s when it was in the care of Dr. Fred Zaidan of Pennsylvania. It remained in the Zaidan family for 46 years, and from 1985 to 1988 it was exhibited, on loan, in the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum in Auburn, Indiana. In 1998, it was purchased by Hal Bjorklund of Castle Rock, Colorado who undertook a complete restoration in the hands of noted Auburn specialist Mark Clayton. The work was rewarded in 2004 by its Primary First Place at the ACD Club National Reunion in Auburn, Indiana, followed by a Senior First Place and Best of Show at the Club's West Coast Meet that same year. It was also Certified Category 1 by the ACD Club.

Mr. Bjorklund sold the car in 2005 to James Covert of Florida, later selling it in 2008 to Robert Thayer. In 2009 it was shown at the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance and a year later at the CCCA Grand National in Stone Mountain, Georgia, winning its Primary First Prize with a perfect 100-point score. In 2011, it was shown at the Amelia Island Concours d'Elegance where it was honored with Best in Class.

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2021 RM Sothebys : Hershey

Pre-Auction Estimates :
USD $700,000-USD $900,000 
Sale Price :
USD $891,000

1935 Auburn Model 851 Auction Sales

Recent Sales of the Auburn Model 851

(Data based on Model Year 1935 sales)
1935 Auburn 851 Supercharged Cabriolet Conversion
Chassis#: 2539M
Sold for USD$72,000
  2022 RM Sothebys : Fort Lauderdale
 
1935 Auburn Eight Supercharged Speedster
Chassis#: 851 33734 E
Sold for USD$891,000
  2021 RM Sothebys : Hershey
1935 Auburn Model 851 image  1935 Auburn Model 851 image  
1935 AUBURN 851 CUSTOM CABRIOLET
Chassis#: 33141M
Sold for USD$82,500
  2021 Barrett-Jackson : Las Vegas
 
1935 AUBURN 851 SUPERCHARGED BOATTAIL SPEEDSTER
Chassis#: 2094
Sold for USD$456,000
  2021 Bonhams : Amelia Island Auction
1935 Auburn Model 851 image  1935 Auburn Model 851 image  
1935 Auburn Eight Supercharged Speedster
Chassis#: 851 33175 E
Sold for USD$802,500
  2020 RM Sothebys : The Elkhart Collection
 
1935 Auburn 851 SC Boattail Speedster
Chassis#: GH3669
Sold for USD$1,072,500
  2020 Worldwide Auctioneers : The Auburn Auction
 
1935 Auburn Eight Supercharged Speedster
Chassis#: 2219
Sold for USD$770,000
  2020 RM Sothebys : Auburn Fall Auction
 
1935 Auburn 851SC Boattail Speedster
Sold for USD$440,000
  2020 Mecum Auctions : Kissimmee
 
1935 Auburn 851 Supercharged Sport Coupe
Chassis#: 32980M
Sold for USD$101,200
  2019 Mecum : Monterey
1935 Auburn Model 851 image  1935 Auburn Model 851 image  
1935 Auburn 851 SC Boattail Speedster
Chassis#: GH4438
Sold for USD$742,500
  2019 Mecum : Monterey
 
1935 Auburn Eight Custom Cabriolet
Chassis#: 2311
Sold for USD$84,000
  2019 RM Sothebys : The Guyton Collection
1935 Auburn Model 851 image  1935 Auburn Model 851 image  
1935 Auburn Eight Supercharged Cabriolet
Chassis#: 33326 F
Sold for USD$132,320
  2019 RM Sothebys : Essen
1935 Auburn Model 851 image  
1935 Auburn Eight Custom Speedster
Chassis#: 1988
Sold for USD$544,000
  2019 RM Sothebys : Amelia Island
1935 Auburn Model 851 image  1935 Auburn Model 851 image  
1935 Auburn Eight Supercharged Phaeton
Chassis#: 851 33161 H
Sold for USD$100,800
  2019 RM Sothebys : Amelia Island
1935 Auburn Model 851 image  1935 Auburn Model 851 image  
1935 Auburn 851 SC Boattail Speedster
Chassis#: 33807E
Sold for USD$632,500
  2019 Worldwide Auctioneers : Scottsdale, Arizona
 
1935 Auburn 851 SC Boattail Speedster
Chassis#: 3-2369-E
Sold for USD$687,500
  2019 Worldwide Auctioneers : Scottsdale, Arizona
 
1935 Auburn 851 SC Boattail Speedster
Chassis#: 33212E
Sold for USD$1,012,000
  2018 Gooding & Company : Pebble Beach
 
1935 Auburn Eight Supercharged Speedster
Chassis#: 851 33175 E
Sold for USD$769,500
  2018 RM Sothebys : Scottsdale, Az.
 
1935 Auburn 851 Cabriolet
Chassis#: GG3568
Sold for USD$99,000
  2018 Worldwide Auctioneers : Scottsdale
 
1935 AUBURN 851 SC PHAETON
Chassis#: 0R32585H
Sold for USD$112,750
  2017 Dragone Lime Rock Park
 

Auburn Model 851s That Failed To Sell At Auction

1935 Auburn Model 851's that have appeared at auction but did not sell.
VehicleChassisEventHigh BidEst. LowEst. High
1935 Auburn 851SC Boattail Speedster33220E2022 Mecum Indy$900,000  
1935 Auburn 851 Supercharged Boat-tail Speedster33515E2019 Bonhams : The Bond Street Sale $650,000$750,000
1935 AUBURN 851 CABRIOLET6G35682017 Premier Auction Group$90,000  
1935 Auburn CS 851 Supercharged Phaeton0R32585H2016 Dragone : The Boston Cup Auction $150,000$180,000
1935 Auburn 851 Cabriolet 2016 Gulf Coast Classic Punta Gorda, Fl$77,000  
1935 Auburn 851 Cabriolet 2016 Amelia Island Select : Hollywood Wheels   
1935 Auburn 851 Supercharged Phaeton Seda 2015 Auctions America Auburn Fall$67,500  
1935 Auburn 851 Supercharged Cabriolet 2014 Auctions America Auburn Fall$90,000  
1935 Auburn 851 SC Cabriolet33891F2013 Worldwide Auctions Auburn $175,000$200,000
1935 Auburn Speedster8465522013 Silver Auction Coeur d'Alene$36,000  
1935 Auburn 851 Convertible Sedan 2012 Auctions America Auburn Fall$80,000  
1935 AUBURN 851 2010 Silver Auction Puyallup$137,500  
1935 Auburn Boattail Speedster 2009 Mecum St. Charles Auction$350,000  
1935 Auburn Boattail 2009 Mecum Monterey Auction$390,000  
1935 Auburn 85133891M2009 Worldwide Auctioneers : The Houston Classic Auction$130,000$160,000$180,000
1935 Auburn 851 2009 Automobiles of Amelia Island$45,000$80,000$100,000
1935 Auburn 851 Phaeton 2008 Vintage Motor Cars of Hershey by RM Auctions$65,000$80,000$100,000
1935 Auburn 851SC 2008 Leake Auctions Tulsa 36th Annual QuikTrip Center$185,000  
1935 AUBURN MODEL 85119502007 Palm Springs Exotic Car Auctions November 18, 2007$57,500  
1935 Auburn 851 Supercharged Speedster 2006 Gooding & Company Pebble Beach Auction $350,000$425,000
1935 AUBURN BOATTAIL SPEEDSTER 2001 Kruse Auction Auburn, IN$26,000  

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1935 Auburn Model 851 vehicle thumbnail image  1935 Auburn Model 851 vehicle thumbnail image  
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