The Dingman Collection 2012

9 - 10 June 2012

Lot 812

1938 Lincoln-Zephyr Coupe

To be auctioned on Sunday, June 10, 2012

Sold for $330,000

  • Chassis no. H-46290


MODEL 86H-720. 110 bhp, 267.3 cu. in. L-head V-12 engine, three-speed manual transmission, solid front axle and live rear axle with transverse semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel mechanical drum brakes. Wheelbase: 125"

On November 2, 1935, the Lincoln Motor Company unveiled a new model, the Lincoln-Zephyr. For Lincoln, which had sold barely 1,400 cars for 1935, the Zephyr was a fresh breeze in the Depression-weary automobile doldrums.

The new car had been developed from designer John Tjaara’s innovative Sterkenburg concept studies of the late 1920s. Smooth and streamlined, the Sterkenburg had a low frontal aspect and was designed for a rear-mounted engine. Edsel Ford became interested in Tjaarda’s work, and Briggs, one of Ford’s body suppliers, built a mockup that appeared at the 1934 Century of Progress exhibition in Chicago, Illinois.

For the production version to be manufactured by Ford, the engine was moved to the front, but the advanced bridge-truss integral frame was retained. Since it was to carry the Lincoln name, a V-12 was called for, but instead of the big engine from the Model K, a twelve based on the Ford V-8 was developed. Initially sold as a four-door sedan or a two-door “coupe-sedan,” the Lincoln-Zephyr offered a “Zephyr-smooth ride with all the passengers cradled between the axles.” A division-window Town Limousine was added in April 1936, and for the model year, nearly 15,000 Zephyrs were sold, while deliveries of big Lincolns hovered around the 1,500 mark.

A particularly sleek and handsome three-window coupe debuted for 1937, and the following year, designer E.T. “Bob” Gregorie gave the car a new nose. The 1938 Lincoln-Zephyr was modestly restyled, with twin grilles placed in the forward end of the “catwalk” section of the fenders. Not merely a styling gimmick, this change markedly improved engine cooling. The vee-shaped nose was softened, and the headlamps were made flush with the fender contours. In addition to the sedan, coupe, and coupe-sedan, as Ford called the two-door, six-passenger model, two new open styles appeared: a convertible coupe and a convertible sedan.

The new open models notwithstanding, many people consider the sleek three-passenger coupe to be the most attractive Lincoln-Zephyr. The 1938 coupe is harder to find than the 1937 since production dropped by half to 2,600.

This 1938 Lincoln-Zephyr coupe was restored in 2007 by Kevin Westmoreland’s Performance Restoration for former owner Donald Peterson, of Wilkesboro, North Carolina, at a cost of approximately $150,000. Subsequently, it was judged at 1,000 points and received Best of Show honors at the Lincoln-Zephyr Owners Club nationals in Indiana. It also received LZOC’s Peter Gregory Award for Best in Class and has AACA Junior and Senior credentials.

Upon its acquisition by the Dingman Collection, the restoration was still fresh. Gorgeous in gloss black paint, it has beige cord cloth upholstery that looks factory fresh. Grey-brown carpet lines the floor, and there is a tan cloth headliner overhead. The dashboard of Lincoln-Zephyrs of this era is distinctive. A console rises pillar-like from the floor, with an instrument binnacle at the top containing all the gauges. From the left side protrudes a shift lever, leaving the center passenger untrammeled during operation.

Correctly detailed and beautifully presented, this Lincoln-Zephyr three-passenger coupe runs on 7.00x16 Firestone Deluxe Champion whitewall tires. Mileage showing is 21,840, believed to be original. As one of the more attractive and rarer body styles, this car represents exceptional value, particularly with its multiple-award-winning restoration.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alain Squindo


Detroit, Michigan

Alain Squindo joined RM Auctions in 2007, after graduating from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., with a degree in History. R... read more

Alex Classick

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United Kingdom

Alex Classick joined RM Europe in 2011 as a car specialist, after graduating from Nottingham University with a degree in Business Mana... read more

Alexander Weaver

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California, USA

Alexander Weaver joined RM Auctions in 2011 as a car specialist, after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born into ... read more

Annette Abaci

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Germany

With post-secondary degrees in Economic Science and Mechanical Engineering, Annette Abaci initially worked part-time at Mercedes-Benz ... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

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United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a senior car specialist, after more than a decade in the collector car hobby... read more

Dan Warrener

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Ontario, Canada

Possessing a degree in Economics from Brandon University, Dan Warrener spent the initial stages of his career working around the globe... read more

Don Rose

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United States

Don Rose joined RM Auctions in 2006, after many years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputatio... read more

Donnie Gould

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Florida, USA

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

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Ontario, Canada

Gord joined RM Auctions in 1998, initially responsible for the transportation and logistics of the company’s auction and restora... read more

Ian Kelleher

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New York, United States

Ian Kelleher began his automotive career immediately following his graduation from Oberlin College, with a B.A. in Politica... read more

Jack Boxstrom

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Ontario, Canada

Jack Boxstrom joined RM Auctions in late-1996 to assist with the recently acquired, and subsequently record-breaking, auction in Monte... read more

Max Girardo

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United Kingdom

Max Girardo started his career in the vintage automobile industry in 1998, joining Brooks Auctioneers (now Bonhams) as a car specialis... read more

Mike Fairbairn

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Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Auctions, Mike Fairbairn has a longstanding interest in the classic car industry. Graduati... read more

Peter Wallman

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United Kingdom

Peter Wallman joined RM Europe in 2007, following nearly two decades in the international advertising industry, read more

Rob Myers

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As chairman and founder of the RM Group of Companies, Rob Myers’s entire career has been devoted to the classic car industry. Ro... read more

Shelby Myers

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California, USA

Shelby Myers literally grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to w... read more

Vinnie Mandzak

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California, USA

Vinnie Mandzak joined RM Auctions’ California office in 2012 as a car specialist, following more than 30 years’ experience... read more