1928 Stutz Model BB Coupe Survivor!

The 1920s are often referred to as the “Roaring Twenties,” and was a time of enormous economic growth and strength within the USA. The economy was booming, and thanks in part to some clever work with import tariffs, American manufacturers were experiencing unprecedented growth. People had money to spend on luxuries, and probably no automotive brand embodied this optimism better than Stutz. Their offerings were glamorous, exclusive, expensive, and possessed performance to match those great looks. This 1928 Model BB Coupe is a shining example of this vision and optimism and still looks pretty impressive for what is an unrestored survivor. When you look across this car, it is incredible to consider that this is a 91-year-old car that, apart from its tires, is said to be completely original. If you would love to have your own slice of that golden era, you will find the Stutz located in Miami, Florida, and listed for sale here on eBay. Bidding has now reached $55,095, but the reserve hasn’t been met.

Part of the secret to the preservation of the Stutz is the fact that it spent something like 70-years hidden away in storage. The same family had owned the car from new right through until it was sold in 2001. As you study the car it is incredible to think that all of the green paint, the black top, the chrome and trim, and the wire wheels, are all original and unrestored. The car is showing its age, but it seems that no-one has been willing to disturb the vehicle’s originality by undertaking a restoration. As far as rust issues are concerned, there are none. The owner supplies photos of the underside of the Stutz, and it is spotlessly clean. Some of the key features of the car include the rear-mounted luggage rack, the matching spare wheels mounted on each running board, the rumble seat, and the pioneering use of a new form of safety glass. If you look closely, you can see fine parallel wires embedded into every piece of window glass as part of the manufacturing process to improve safety. The thinking was that even if broken, the glass would maintain its integrity, rather than shattering into sharp and dangerous shards. The 1928 model year marked the first for Stutz with this innovation included in their offerings.

The originality of the Stutz carries over to the interior, with the seat and door trims still wearing their original mohair upholstery. The seat is looking a bit moth-eaten in a couple of places, but it still looks to be solid, with no signs of rips, tears, or rot. During its 70-years in storage, the rumble seat was kept closed, and the original green leather upholstery on it has remained absolutely faultless. The timber on the dash appears to also be close to perfect, but it is the gauge cluster that really embodies all that is special about this car. You get a nice selection of gauges, finished in black on a cream background. However, it is the surround that can’t help but grab your attention. If you look through the photos at the bottom of this article, you will see a lovely photo of this feature. It is the most ornately decorated piece of nickel, and its intricacy is enough to take your breath away. By the way, that odometer reading of 8,796 miles is said to be original.

The Model BB, and this was always the case across the Stutz range, wasn’t exclusively about style. These were a car with some solid mechanical substance. The engine in the Model BB has a racing heritage, and in 1928, it represented some pretty advanced thinking. Referred to as the “Vertical Eight,” this 299ci straight-eight engine features a chain-driven overhead camshaft, complete with two self-adjusting timing chain tensioners. While the competition from the likes of Lincoln and Cadillac were struggling to achieve 90hp, the Stutz managed to produce an astonishing 110hp. This was in standard trim, because several versions with increased compression were also available, and this pushed power as high as 140hp. I believe that this car features the standard 110hp engine, which sends its power to the rear wheels via a 3-speed manual transmission. The Stutz is said to run and drive perfectly, and is ready to be driven and enjoyed immediately. In 2007, the Stutz made an appearance at Pebble Beach, and walked away with the 1st place trophy in the Pre-War Preservation Class.

This Stutz Model BB Coupe is a special car, and while it isn’t going to be a cheap investment, it might be well worth serious consideration. Stutz was by no means a high-volume manufacturer, and their prices reflected their exclusivity. In 1928, this car would have cost the owner around $3,500, and this was at a time when a Ford Model A Roadster was priced at $385, and a top-of-the-line Town Car would set a buyer back a whopping $1,400. With only 2,403 cars of all variations rolling out the doors of the Stutz factory in 1928, this really could be a once in a lifetime opportunity.

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Comments

  1. Rex Kahrs Member

    It’s surprising that this very high-end car is in (what appears to be) a middle-class neighborhood. Really cool car.

    Like 7
    • leiniedude leiniedude Member

      As it left the original famly 18 years ago, maybe a shot and a beer person got it on the cheap.

      Like 2
  2. Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

    Agreed, Rex Kahrs in both respects.
    Very classy, yet has the look of the gangster persona of that era.
    It’d be a good thing if the seller gets what he’s asking but buyers for these are much more scarce anymore.

    Like 3
  3. John

    That hood ornament and dash… wow!

    Like 8
  4. BarnfindyCollins

    A great American car here! I’d love to know the story of how it remained with one family from new until 2001 and is now being offered for sale. Will Jay Leno add this to his well rounded collection?

    Like 6
    • ken tilly UK Member

      I would love to be the one that beats Jay to this beautiful, original, motor car. Wow! and again, Wow!

      Like 7
    • Lance

      The original owner purchased the car in November 1928 and passed away in 1932. The car was put away in storage at that time and stayed there for 70 years. When brought out of storage it had 5900 miles and currently has under 8900. It sold at auction in 2012 for $60,500.

      Like 8
      • Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

        Excellent research into the back story, Lance! Sad but interesting; might we reason that the low odo mileage might be due to poor road infrastructure at the time?

        Like 2
    • jerry

      looks like something wayne carini off chasing classic cars would be his cup of tea, with his conections

      • Don

        Wayne sold his ‘21
        Stutz Bearcat a while back..

  5. Bc

    Wow!! Great looking rare survivor! Amazing detailed guage cluster surround.!! I want it!!

    Like 4
  6. bdub

    Around 2000-2004 I had a customer that was based out of the former Stutz Plant. It had been turned into a business center mid 90’s. And continues to be developed out and occupied.

    When I was there, there was a Stutz on display… If I recall correctly, it was also this particular green color. I don’t remember much else about it as I was too busy working to spend time with the car… maybe one day I will visit again and see if it is still there.

    Like 4
  7. dustin

    It is listed on Hemmings for $126,900

    Like 1
  8. 86_Vette_Convertible

    An American Great Automobile. It needs to be restored and put back on the highway IMO. I doubt it will happen but we can always dream.

    Like 1
    • ken tilly UK Member

      Why restore it? It’s already a great runner and it’s only original once.

      Like 10
      • 86_Vette_Convertible

        I should have said Fix what needs to be fixed. The rest I think is just a good cleanup inside and out.

        Like 3
      • John Taylor

        You are dead right there ken, perhaps and only perhaps, you might get the chrome redone and if you could get the correct roof material replace that and enjoy a fantastic original car, 2nd thoughts leave the chrome as is and just do the roof. Way out of my price range but would really enjoy owning this ride.

        Like 1
  9. Coventrycat

    What a car. Love it.

    Like 4
  10. Rick C

    Reminding me of the Bearcat Barn find from Chasing Classics..

    /Users/rcunningham973/Desktop/https—blogs-images.forbes.com-markewing-files-2016-07-24069822-1-2-1200×800.jpg

    Like 3
  11. Del

    Another Jaw Dropper.

    Bet this can really fly.

    What a fabulous piece of crafting.

    Like 4
  12. Don

    I watched today Chasing Classics when he finally sold the BEARCAT for if I’m not mistaken
    $5400,000 or did I put too many 0s?!?!?!

  13. Bob McK Member

    I love this rare beast. Wish I could afford to drive down to Miami and drive her home.

    Like 2
    • john c

      I might be closer to Miami from Virginia than you sir… I’d be happy to do the drive. Probably a bit over $250.oo in fuel. (-;

      • Bob McK Member

        I am in Fort Lauderdale… 35 Miles north. If I bought it, you are welcome to come down for the drive. This is the perfect time of year for us.

  14. Karl

    When I hear the of a car built by Stutz THIS is what I visualize, grace, prestige and beauty, NOT that abomination under the same name also in the BF placement! This car is a work of art as it should be with a name like Stutz!

    Like 1
  15. Mountainwoodie

    Preservation class winner, I would think, at any of the CCA shows…..forever.

    Had Rudolph Valentino been alive when it was new…he might have driven one………..and fast :)

    Its a long way from the Stuz to the Toyota Yaris! We’re devolving!

    Like 1
  16. leiniedude leiniedude Member

    Ended:Dec 07, 2019 , 11:30PM
    Current bid:US $57,200.00
    Reserve not met
    [ 20 bids ]

    Like 2
  17. Del

    Hey Rex. Never judge a car by the Neborhood.

    Looks like a car dealer

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