Five Cars from RM in Hershey

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Hershey, Pennsylvania | October 10-11, 2019


1906 White Model F Touring

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Thomas White‘s sewing machine business gave way to steam cars in 1900. The company was a pioneer in their field, but they ultimately saw the light and phased out steam cars in favor of gas-powered vehicles in 1912.

This 1906 Model F fouring was the second-cheapest car White offered in 1906 after the Model F Runabout. At $2,800, it wasn’t cheap. But the White was one of the more popular – and more well-built – steam cars of their day. This one looks great but would look better with a convertible top. It should bring between $40,000-$60,000. Click here for more info.


1917 Chandler Type 17 Seven-Passenger Touring

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Frederic Chandler worked for Lozier before he jumped ship in 1913 with a few of his fellow employees to form his own company. The Chandler was a hit and lasted through 1929, when it was acquired by Hupmobile and quickly phased out.

There were a lot of cars “in the middle” of the American market in the 1910s and 20s. Chandler was one of the better ones in that class. This 1917 model is powered by a 27 horsepower 4.4-liter inline-six. Five body styles were offered, and the seven-passenger touring sold new for $1,395. This time around it should bring between $20,000-$30,000. Click here for more info.


1923 Gardner Model 5 Five-Passenger Sedan

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

The most interesting thing about this Gardner sedan, to me, is thinking about who purchased it in 1923. No one in 1923 knew that GM, Chrysler, and Ford would still be around 100 years later. But surely someone assumed Gardner would’ve been. After all, it was a well-regarded company from St. Louis that built a fair number of cars. It’s just hard to imagine someone wandering down to their local Gardner dealer and plunking down the cash.

Gardners were built from 1920 through 1931, and the company sort of inched upmarket each year, with their final offerings bordering on luxury cars. Kind of like Chrysler. But back in ’23, they were just another middle-class marque. The Model 5 could be had in a few styles, the sedan selling for $1,365. It kind of looks like a taxi and is powered by a 43 horsepower inline-four. It is expected to bring between $20,000-$30,000. But I bet it goes cheaper than that. Click here for more info.


1930 Marquette Model 35 Five-Passenger Phaeton

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

GM’s “companion make” philosophy in the 1920s and 1930s gave us Pontiac and LaSalle. Both of which were relatively successful. In fact, Pontiac was so successful that GM killed off the brand that spawned it, Oakland. So they figured they’d give Buick a companion. And they did: Marquette.

It only lasted for a single model year. Six models were offered, all priced right at about $1,000. All Marquettes are powered by a 3.5-liter inline-six good for 67 horsepower. The Model 35 Phaeton sold for $1,020, and this is one of 889 such cars built.

In all, Marquette production totaled 35,007 before GM killed it off. This rare survivor should bring between $15,000-$25,000, which seems like a steal. Click here for more info.


1933 Terraplane Deluxe Six Model KU Sedan

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

I was excited to feature an Essex. But I forgot that Hudson killed off the Essex marque in favor of Terraplane beginning in 1933. So instead of featuring a final-year example from Essex, we’re featuring a launch-year example of the Terraplane.

Terraplane offered six and eight-cylinder cars in 1933 that were essentially down-market Hudsons. A slew of body styles were offered, and the sedan cost $655 when new. A 3.2-liter inline-six good for 70 horsepower provided the oomph. This is a handsome car in good colors. It’s well-trimmed, with chrome bumpers and four suicide doors. The best part is it is usable and is expected to fetch only $15,000-$25,000. Click here for more info and here for more from this sale.

Australian Terraplane

1937 Terraplane Series 71 DeLuxe Utility Coupe

Offered by RM Sotheby’s | Auburn, Indiana | May 11-12, 2018

Photo Courtesy of RM Sotheby’s

Terraplane was a marque introduced by Hudson as a standalone brand in 1934 (in ’32 and ’33 they were called Essex-Terraplane). As an entry-level car on the pricing scale, for a brief period during the Depression, Terraplane outsold its parent, Hudson.

Unfortunately, the lifespan of Terraplane was short and 1937 was the final year the cars could be had. Two models were available for ’37: the Series 71 DeLuxe and the Series 72 Super. Both were virtually identical to the Hudsons of that year with just slight trim changes. The DeLuxe differed from the Super in that it only had one taillight and no vents on the front windows.

This well restored example (the restoration cost $263,000 – quite a bit for a car that cost about $600 when new) is likely powered by a 3.5-liter straight-six that makes 96 horsepower. What’s interesting about this particular car is that it is an Australian example, hence the “Utility” or pull-out pickup bed out back. Terraplanes were sold in Australia when new but were all bodied locally, hence the Aussie take on an American export.

A rare body style stateside, and one of only a few known to exist worldwide, this entry-level Hudson should bring between $80,000-$100,000. Click here for more info and here for more from RM in Auburn.

Update: Not sold.

Update: Not sold, RM Sotheby’s, Auburn Fall 2018.

Terraplane Pickup

1937 Terraplane Series 70 Pickup

Offered by Mecum | Austin, Texas | December 12-13, 2014

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

Terraplane was both a model built by Hudson and an entire sub-brand, depending on the year. In ’37 they were technically just Terraplanes, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see them badged as Hudsons as well.

Here’s how the Terraplane branding went down:

1932 through 1933: Essex-Terraplane
1934 through 1937: Terraplane
1938: Hudson-Terraplane

Now you know.

The engine in this one is a 3.5-liter straight-six making 96 horsepower. I’ve seen some of these trucks in person before and they are sharp. I’ve always been a Hudson fan and their sub-brand ranges were just as interesting as the cars they called their own. You can see more here and see more from Mecum here.

Update: Sold $45,000.

Three Pre-War American Pickups

Kisber Vintage Truck Collection

Offered by Mecum | Austin, Texas | December 12-13, 2014


 1937 Studebaker J5 Express Coupe Pickup

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

Michael Kisber of Memphis, Tennessee, had a great collection of classic American pickups. This 1937 Studebaker J5 is one very pretty truck. The J5 was new for 1937 and it was a new take on the pickup truck: instead of  pure utility, they added some luxury and style.

The engine is a 3.6-liter straight-six making 85 horsepower. The Coupe Express was available through 1939. About 3,000 of the approximately 5,000 examples built were constructed in 1937. Click here for more info.

Update: Sold $72,000.


1939 Willys Series 38 Pickup

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

John North Willys started building cars in 1908 and the Willys name has had a long and interesting history. It helped win WWII for the Allied powers and later became part of Kaiser. It lives on today as the Jeep brand.

The engine here is a 2.2-liter four-cylinder making 61 horsepower. You really don’t see examples of this truck around anywhere. Ever. You rarely even see Willys models from the 30s at all. It’s definitely cool. Click here for more.

Update: Sold $40,000.


1937 Terraplane Series 70 Pickup

Photo - Mecum

Photo – Mecum

Terraplane was both a model built by Hudson and an entire sub-brand, depending on the year. In ’37 they were technically just Terraplanes, but it wouldn’t surprise me to see them badged as Hudsons as well.

Here’s how the Terraplane branding went down:

1932 through 1933: Essex-Terraplane
1934 through 1937: Terraplane
1938: Hudson-Terraplane

Now you know.

The engine in this one is a 3.5-liter straight-six making 96 horsepower. I’ve seen some of these trucks in person before and they are sharp. I’ve always been a Hudson fan and their sub-brand ranges were just as interesting as the cars they called their own. You can see more here and see more from Mecum here.

Update: Sold $45,000.