The 1929 Cord L29 stands as an automotive marvel, born from the collaborative genius of Harry Miller and Cornelius Van Ranst, showcasing a groundbreaking mid-engine front-wheel-drive system. Engineered for performance, it features a Lycoming inline 8-cylinder powerplant, a 3-speed transmission, inboard hydraulic brakes, and hydraulic shock absorbers.
E.L. Cord, an avid motorsports enthusiast, recognized the potential of Miller's front-wheel-drive race cars, acquiring passenger car rights in 1926. The result of meticulous development and testing by Van Ranst and Fred Duesenberg, the Cord L29, along with the Ruxton, marked the first production American front-wheel-drive cars offered to the public in 1929.
Built in Auburn, Indiana, the L29 captivates with its low-slung styling and excellent handling. With an original cost ranging from $3,095 to $3,295 in 1929, approximately 4,400 units were sold. Today, only 300 L29s remain, with just 8 Broughams known to exist.
Sakhnoffsky's meticulous attention to detail is evident throughout the body and interior, emphasizing sweeping grace. The exterior boasts a distinctive low beltline, accentuated by a long hood, prominent front fenders, and oversized hubcaps. The interior, adorned with intricate details, features an external sun visor, padded headliner, chromed rear window, sill lights, and plush wooden accents.
Intended to bridge the price gap between the Auburn Eight and the mighty J, the L-29 exemplifies Cord's vision for a distinctive, performance-oriented vehicle. The 298.6-cubic-inch Lycoming straight-eight, reconfigured from larger Auburn models, delivers power to the front wheels, resulting in a signature mile-long hood and a Duesenberg-like radiator, accentuating its timeless elegance. The Cord L29 remains a testament to automotive ingenuity and continues to capture the imagination of enthusiasts with its pioneering design and enduring beauty.