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German Spohn prototype question

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12 hours ago, edinmass said:


I find the above custom coach built car interesting, historical, and their stories of being built, found, and now restored great fun. The only issue is their styling is how should we say.............way outside the envelope of natural progression at the time.......they didn’t end up with a masterpiece of design. They ended up with a strange curiosity. I’m glad someone is taking on the restoration of the car back to it’s original configuration. I’m sure I will see it at Pebble and Amelia when finished, and I expect that they would win a trophy. But it won’t be for design, or style. 

 

I regularly have to remind commenters that Spohn DID NOT style these custom cars.   The customer made the styling choice and most of them were USAF pilots reading US custom car books.   Spohn did have a "box of toys" which was photos and drawings of other cars including US concept cars like the GM LeSabre concept from Harley Earl.   Multiple pilots came to Spohn and chose those LeSabre fins that were so very much like their Sabre jets!   Yes, their choices were often incongruous.   

Keep in mind Spohn Carosserie was the primary coachbuilder for Maybach, completing a significant majority of their great German Classics.   Spohn was said to have the finest finishes on their cars in the pre-WWII market.

With WWII, most of the world's coachbuilders closed their doors partly because of economics and partly because car bodies were no longer being wood framed.   Maybach closed with the war.   After the war Spohn's managing family the Eiwangers, hoped to make the business profitable once again through individual contracts with Mercedes, Veritas, Volkswagen and others but there was no volume.   US style customs for reconstruction US forces in Germany were thought to be one possibility.   We think some two dozen Spohn Customs on US chassis were built.

Yes, the Spohn Palos will be on the concours scene when finished.  Look for it probably in 2021. 

 

Photo.  What would you like us to do, Lieutenant?  Herr Eiwanger talks to a '52 Lincoln owner about customizing his car.   That car is one of 5 Spohn Customs extant.

 

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Edited by StillOutThere (see edit history)
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I am sure there are those who don't think the dysfunctional grille is not butt ugly.

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On 12/25/2019 at 8:23 PM, StillOutThere said:

 

I regularly have to remind commenters that Spohn DID NOT style these custom cars.  

 

 

I'm sure they were just trying to survive at that point.  Their prewar work was very tasteful.  You are fortunate that the GI that ordered your car had taste.   The Veritos is also not ugly,  but some of the others...

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You mean the hot dog grille was not a Spohn design ? Is certainly the rong shape and location for airflow either intake or extractor.

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2 hours ago, padgett said:

You mean the hot dog grille was not a Spohn design ? Is certainly the rong shape and location for airflow either intake or extractor.

 

I don't know which of the dozens of grilles you are calling "the hot dog grille".  Which car? 

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This one. The ones stolen from GM are not bad but why would someone want a Chrysler to look like a Buick ?

spahngrill.jpg

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On 12/27/2019 at 2:29 PM, padgett said:

This one. The ones stolen from GM are not bad but why would someone want a Chrysler to look like a Buick ?

spahngrill.jpg

 

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Regards the Buick concept grille on the Chrysler, my supposition would be the car's owner thought it would take the design of the car into the future.   Any custom car is the owner's dream.  We can criticize but ALL design is subjective.

 

Regarding the upper grille or "hot dog grille" on the Veritas, the car may not always have been so as the attached photo shows.   We don't have VINs for the two Veritas customized by Spohn nor photo dates in most cases.   Could be that after completion sans upper grille, the car was found to require more cooling.

z3.jpg

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FYI, Spohn had built more than half of the Veritas car bodies on production chassis.   These were not "Spohn Customs".  These were the catalog offerings.   Examples.

Quote

 

 

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A couple of the Spohn Customs that do not get into stories about Spohn are these. 

First a '47 Oldsmobile.   You'll agree it looks like a Packard.

Then a '51 Chevrolet.  Owner chose the Ford X-100 concept grille.

And an American style "radical custom" '50 Oldsmobile that has been both chopped and sectioned.

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SpohnChevrolet_700.jpg

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Meanwhile in Spohn's quest to survive postwar,  they received a contract to build the first Guillore-bodied Bugatti Type 101 prototype.  

150277_190531834425214_475525111_n.jpg

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On 12/25/2019 at 6:23 PM, StillOutThere said:

 

We think some two dozen Spohn Customs on US chassis were built.

 

 

 

Urban legend has it there was one Spohn build on a Tucker chassis.😲  Last I ever read or heard of such a thing was in 1973 or so.  Is it still urban legend?

 

Craig

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12 hours ago, 8E45E said:

Urban legend has it there was one Spohn build on a Tucker chassis.😲  Last I ever read or heard of such a thing was in 1973 or so.  Is it still urban legend?

 

Craig

That is new to me.  I think the Tucker enthusiasts might have pursued that to the end of the world by now.   Will admit I never thought to look for a Spohn bodied Tucker!  

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On 12/29/2019 at 2:45 PM, bryankazmer said:

not bad except for a particularly bad job on the folded top stack - a problem area for most German coachbuilders

 

For the Spohn Palos, the cabrio top fully disappears and there they made a steel "hard boot" cover.

 

DSCN3311.JPG

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perhaps the lack of oxygen at times influenced the pilots choices.as ray would say beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

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On 12/29/2019 at 3:58 PM, StillOutThere said:

Meanwhile in Spohn's quest to survive postwar,  they received a contract to build the first Guillore-bodied Bugatti Type 101 prototype.  

150277_190531834425214_475525111_n.jpg

62290_206912349453829_2048734060_n.jpg

This actually is pretty good looking - hate to say it, the rest unique and interesting, though not so good looking. 

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