Last American Duesenberg Heads to Auction
America's last Duesenberg is going on the auction block. Want to buy this classic? You'll need to be in Dallas on Nov. 22. That's when Leake Auction Company opens to bids the 1978 Glenn Pray Duesenberg Dual Cowl Sport Phaeton – the last model to receive a sequential serial number from the Auburn Cord Duesenberg factory. Pray's family is also selling the copyright to the famous Cord name at the same time. RELATED: See Photos of the 1978 Duesenberg Glenn Pray Cowl Phaeton
This Duesenberg was one of a kind. Pray, who in the 1960s acquired the rights to Auburn, Cord and Duesenberg, decided in the 1970s to create a new Deusy. This after launching the Cord 8/10 and then, later, his Auburn 866 Speedster.
In the late 1970’s, according to the auction company, Pray acquired a new Duesenberg chassis with the vision of creating his own version of this mighty automobile. He pulled molds off an original Model J Durham Tourister. A sweep panel was added to the Tourister body to combine Pray’s idea of a modern day recreation in the Le Grande style.
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A V12 American LaFrance fire engine was installed in the Duesenberg. It's not as odd as it sounds. After the Auburn brand was discontinued in the 1930s, this basic engine design was kept alive and used for decades in fire engines produced by the American-LaFrance company.
Coupled with a period correct three-speed manual transmission, the power combination seemed to work out quite well. Completing the picture was a set of chrome-plated Buffalo wire wheels, plus the famous Duesenberg grille, headlights and fenders.
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Upon completion, the Pray-Duesenberg with V12 power, was honored with the next consecutive serial number following the final Duesenberg to be built in Indianapolis. This beauty was built by hand in the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Factory, in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, just as they had been in the 1920’s and 30’s.
For information on the auction, visit leakecar.com.