Lincoln Zephyr Sedan
The Lincoln Zephyr project actually started in 1934 as a rear-engine design with an aluminum V8, but by the time it reached production in 1936, conventional thinking had prevailed. However, the basic streamlined form remained the same, now with a handsome alligator grille concealing a lightweight V12, created by adding four cylinders to Ford’s landmark V8.
Offering 90 mph and 14-17 mpg, it was an immediate hit, outselling the gigantic Lincoln K models ten to one. First year sales were 15,528, and these doubled to an even 30,000 in 1937. The Zephyr was the first Ford product to offer unit construction and a steel roof, and four years later it would give birth to Edsel Ford’s Lincoln Continental, a high-water mark in pre-WWII styling.
This car represents the first revision of the original idea, with modified grille and side louvers, gracefully V-shaped bumpers and a completely new dash, with centrally placed instruments, enabling the car to be built in both right- and left-hand drive. The large speedometer was mounted ahead of the gearshift on a console that extended to the floor and held the radio speaker and heating duct.
This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in July of 2010 at the Shotwell Gustafson Pavilion at Meadow Brook Hall, Rochester, Michigan.
110 hp, 267.3 cu. in. L-head V12 engine, three-speed manual transmission, front and rear transverse leaf springs, four-wheel mechanical brakes. Wheelbase: 122"
Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Darin Schnabel