Lincoln Zephyr Convertible Sedan

The Lincoln Motor Company made a dramatic announcement on November 2, 1935. A new model, called Lincoln-Zephyr, was unveiled to sell at $1,275 to $1,320, less than a third the price of the least expensive Model K Lincoln. For Lincoln, which had sold barely 1,400 cars for 1935, the Zephyr was a fresh breeze with its advanced design and sales success in the Depression-weary automobile doldrums.

The new car had been developed from designer John Tjaarda’s innovative Sterkenburg concept studies of the late 1920s. Smooth and streamlined, the Sterkenburg had a low frontal aspect and was designed for a rear-mounted engine. Edsel Ford became interested in Tjaarda’s work, and Briggs, one of Ford’s body suppliers, built a mockup that appeared at the 1934 Century of Progress exhibition in Chicago.

For the production version to be manufactured by Ford, the engine was moved to the front, but the advanced bridge-truss integral frame was retained. Since it was to carry the Lincoln name, a V-12 was specified, but instead of the big engine from the Model K, a 12 based on the venerable Ford flathead V-8 was developed. Initially sold as a four-door sedan or a two-door “Coupe-Sedan,” the Lincoln-Zephyr offered a “Zephyr-smooth ride with all the passengers cradled between the axles.” A division-window Town Limousine was added in April 1936, and for the model year nearly 15,000 Zephyrs were sold, while deliveries of big Lincolns hovered around the 1,500 mark.

This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in March of 2012 at the Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, Florida and in June of 2012 at the Dingman Collection, Hampton, New Hampshire.

110 bhp, 267.3 cu. in. L-head V-12 engine, three-speed manual transmission with Columbia two-speed axle, solid front axle and live rear axle with transverse semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel mechanical drum brakes. Wheelbase: 125"

Source: RM Auctions

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