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1935 Auburn 653 Cabriolet: Barn Elegance

1935 Auburn 635 Cabriolet

For some reason, I’ve always been fascinated by the styling and engineering of cars built in the ’30s, especially ones built in America. They seem to have a sense of class and civility not often found in other automotive eras. This 1935 Auburn 653 Cabriolet is the perfect example of what I speak of. Simply put, it is elegant. Its lines are smooth and simple, yet still manage to catch your attention. Even in its dusty and worn state, it’s easy to see why these cars were so popular with the eras aristocrats and celebrities. This example, which can be found here on eBay in Lodi, Ohio, is one of only a few right hand drive cars built for export. Some how it made it back to our shores from England and then into this Ohio barn. It appears to be stablemates with a number of other interesting cars, so this one might be worth checking out just to see what else is in this barn!


  1. Tom

    I worked as a dealer rep in the 80’s in Scottsdale for Auto Trader. I called on Leo Gephart. He had two warehouses of classic car. Lot of 1920’s and 30’s cars many I had never saw, I called them Grand Old Cars. I did make much money off Leo, he was very slow, and always talked cars. I learn a little bit more about classic cars from Leo, It was the best stop of the week. This was the best job I ever had. I see that Leo has just pasted earlier this year. I am sorry ,he will be missed, the last of the old timers. Below is a link to a story about Leo’s life.



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  2. Matthew Tritt

    Great looking car, alright. Aside from the fatal crack running along the side of the block (“on ONE side of the block, as described in the piece”) it appears to be a good candidate for restoration. I would also like to point out that for many of us old geezers, great American cars ceased to be produced in 1940 – 41, with the tail end at 1949. Auburn was was a cheap car made by Auburn-Cord-Duesenburg, with a Continental powerplant, also used in a number of different American makes from the 20’s through the 30’s. Finding an appropriate replacement for this ruined one could prove interesting.

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  3. Tim H

    I love the art deco cars of the 30’s. The Auburn, Cord and Duesenbergs of E.L. Cord are some of the best. All I could afford is a reproduction but I still love the look. (37 Cord)

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  4. skloon

    Really, you can’t include the old license plate ?

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  5. bcavileer

    THAT is an automobile worth restoring. Wish I could do it! Gotta finish an AH 3000 first….
    darn it, i was pissed at the hobby last night, now i want to dive in again. Lol
    btw, an engine is close by…geez

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  6. Dennis M

    1943, my Dad was a newly minted First Lieutenant, 101st Engineers, 26th Infantry – Yankee Div – assigned to Ft. Gordon, GA. Along with his new bride he lived in a mansion with three other couples. He picked up a 1935 Auburn convertible sedan and drove it for close to a year.

    Fast forward to late summer 1944: orders to European theater, his wife is pregnant (guess who!) and did not want to drive the Auburn back home to far Northern New York so he sold it on.

    He came home in late ’45 when I was 6 months old. Not sure he ever really forgave me for losing that Auburn!

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  7. francisco

    What a beautiful automobile!

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  8. Ed P

    Nice body. Has anyone had a cracked block repaired?

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    • Dennis M

      Yes, it can be done depending on the location of the crack. In the outer water jacket it is a fairly straight forward fix. If it is in a cylinder wall the block can be sleeved. A lot depends on the rarity and value of the block.

      Of course it is getting harder all the time to find someone with the skill to stitch a cracked block or head.

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  9. Ralph

    The car next to it is a Studebaker Avanti

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