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Lot 36
1932 Ford Deluxe Roadster


Selling on Wednesday

From the Ron Thorne Collection

CHASSIS NO: 1856017

• No-expense-spared body-off restoration
• Completed the Great American Race in 1985
• Desirable first-year styling and engineering
• 1 of 6,893 produced

221 cid flathead V-8 engine, 65 HP, three-speed manual transmission, solid front axle and live rear axle with transverse semi-elliptic leaf spring suspension, four-wheel mechanical drum brakes, rear-wheel drive; wheelbase: 112”

Ford introduced their all-new V-8 roadster in 1932, and the public could not have been happier. They finally could get a low-priced V-8 car that was sporty and classy enough to make more than just a speed statement on the road. Even though many saw the roadsters being perfectly fine how they were, it didn’t take long for the hot rod community to start adding their own personal touches to both the engines and the bodies. With fewer than 8,200 produced, and combined with the hot rod trend, it makes it hard to find a restored example with period-correct specifications like the one being offered here.

This 1932 Ford Deluxe Roadster is regarded in Ron Thorne’s collection as one of the highest-level restorations, and has an exceptionally interesting history. Known history begins when the car was acquired by a gentleman in Pennsylvania in the late ‘70s. That owner went through the car mechanically in preparation to run the Great American Race in 1985. The Great American Race, now known as the Great Race, is a classic endurance rally for street legal vintage automobiles that are at least 45 years old. What's unique about this race is all vehicles must use original factory parts, and points are awarded for the accuracy of the driver and navigator’s time and average speed over the predetermined course, not how fast someone can finish the race. This ‘32 Ford Deluxe Roadster would go on to finish the race, proving that these V-8 engines and transmissions were built to last. The car would later be sold to a collector in Illinois, who sold the car to Ron Thorne.

This ‘32 Roadster was brought back to original specifications and finished in Ford Medium Maroon with black fenders and gold pinstriping. A new tan top was properly fitted and matches the overall appearance. The elegant body is offset by factory optional Aurora Red spoke wheels with Firestone blackwall tires. The gold pinstriping can be seen following the body line from the front to rear, as well as on the louvers on the hood. It’s led by a greyhound mascot on the hood, cowl lights, and a rear-mounted spare with a metal case, all options only offered on the Deluxe models at the time.

The Deluxe trim options can be seen inside where the Copra Drab genuine leather and mahogany-stained walnut grain dash meets the occupants with a warm and inviting glow. The dash houses the oval-shaped engine-turned aluminum gauge cluster and black three-point steering wheel which adds to the Roadster’s sporty feel. When extra seating is needed, the rumble seat in the rear, finished in brown faux leather, offers an exhilarating vantage point.

Under the hood, the flathead V-8 engine looks like it just came out of the factory and is backed by a three-speed manual transmission with floor shifter; the parts work together to create harmony down the road. If cars could talk, this one would have an abundance of stories to tell, from where it’s been and what it’s seen, to receiving a new life with its extensive body-off restoration.

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