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1938 Lincoln K Brunn Semi-Collapsible Cabriolet

Multiple National Show winner including LCOC First Place and Best of Class Awards, AACA Senior Grand National Awards and CCCA First Place Senior Award winner. One of only nine Cabriolets produced with the semi-collapsible top. Coachwork by Brunn & Company.

Model 425B 160hp 414 cu. in. V12 engine

Three-speed manual transmission

Front and rear semi-elliptic leaf spring

Four-wheel Bendix Duo-Servo mechanical drum brakes

Wheelbase: 145"

Henry Leland’s first Lincoln automobile was superbly engineered and built. Introduced in 1921, it was powered by a 60° V8 engine. The Model L Lincolns were powerful, reliable and strong. Leland, however, had an engineer’s vision and the bodies which completed his automobiles were stodgy and out of date. When it became apparent that drastic measures were needed to brighten up the Leland Lincolns’ appearance they turned to the Buffalo, New York firm of Brunn & Company. Hermann A. Brunn rushed out a set of twelve body designs, delivering one of each to Lincoln but it was too late as dismal sales, the post WWI recession and an erroneous multi-million dollar tax bill spelled the end of Lincoln. It was bought out of receivership in 1922 by none other than Henry Ford.

Edsel Ford took charge at Lincoln after the Leland’s angry parting only four months later and quickly commissioned the best American coachbuilders to create designs for Lincoln. Locke, Judkins, Dietrich, Derham, LeBaron and others soon joined Brunn. Brunn & Company had been established in 1908 when Hermann A. Brunn left his uncle’s carriageworks to concentrate on automobile bodies. Hermann A. Brunn was later joined by his son, Hermann C. Brunn, who had apprenticed at Kellner in Paris. The firm continued in business until the beginning of WWII and Hermann C. Brunn later had a successful career in Ford’s design department.

The partnership among Edsel Ford, Lincoln and America’s coachbuilders was rich and productive. Edsel Ford, much like Henry Leland, set high standards and left both his Lincoln engineers and the coachbuilders to realize them, applying their skill, knowledge and experience freely. The flowering of this approach came in 1932 with the introduction of the Model KB, a narrow angle 448 cubic inch V12-powered 145 inch wheelbase expression of the ultimate in sophistication, power and refinement. Not only was the KB luxurious, it also was a good handling road car.

In 1933, a smaller V12 of 382 cubic inches was introduced as the KA, the KB remaining in production. For the first time, the KA V12 used offset cylinder banks, dropping the fork-and-blade connecting rods employed by Leland and every Lincoln engine to that point. In 1934, the KA V12 was enlarged to 414 cubic inches, becoming the standard Lincoln engine. Production of the V12 Lincolns; however, continued to feel the effects of the Great Depression, falling steadily.

In 1938, only 416 Model K Lincolns were built, yet remarkably Lincoln offered some twenty-two cataloged standard and custom bodies on both 136 inch and 145 inch wheelbase chassis. Now fitted with hydraulic valve lifters for quiet and consistent operation and two-barrel carburetors, the aerodynamic forms exemplified by the revolutionary Lincoln Zephyr in 1936 reached full expression even on the senior Lincolns. And even with twenty-two cataloged body designs it was still possible to order full custom coachwork.

The car offered here is one such full custom 1938 Lincoln K, bearing a unique Semi Collapsible Cabriolet body by Brunn on the 145 inch wheelbase. Finished in black with a gray interior, the Lincoln with its dual side-mount spares and rear trunk is beautifully proportioned in true classic style. Brunn’s design cleanly integrates with the Zephyr-derived aerodynamic styling which became even more subtle in 1938 with fewer grille bars and revised hood vents. One of only nine built with the semi-collapsible top this example originally sold for $7,522 – a considerable sum considering $4,900 could purchase a new Lincoln Model K of the same year. Part of the Lincoln’s colorful history includes tenure in the famous J.C. Whitney Collection of Roy I. Warshawsky.

This Lincoln has a long and impressive show history spanning from 1998 to 2006 having most recently been shown at a CCCA event hosted by the Gilmore Museum in Hickory Corners, Michigan where it won a Best in Class and a Senior Badge #1184S. An elegant expression of the best of classic design, the 1938 Lincoln K Semi-Collapsible Cabriolet is a CCCA Full Classic™ that will surely continue to be an appreciated participant in a wide variety of events and tours.

Show Results

Primary Badge Senior Number 1184
1985 CCCA Meet
Indianapolis IN

1st Place
1998 LCOC Mid-America National Meet
Itasca, Il

Class Award
1999 Meadow Brook Concours d’Elegance
Rochester, MI

1st Place & Lincoln Trophy (Best of Class)
2000 LCOC Eastern National Meet
Pine Mountain, GA

1st Place & Car of the Decade
Lincoln in the Millennium
St Louis, MO

Spring Meet 1st Place Junior
2002 AACA Central Division National
Cedar Rapids, IA

Best of Class Pre War Closed
2002 Bay Harbor Concours d’Elegance
Bay Harbor, MI

1st Place & Car of the Decade
Lincoln in the Millennium
St Louis, MO

1st Place Junior
2002 AACA Central Division
National Spring Meet
Cedar Rapids, IA

Best of Class Pre War Closed
2002 Bay Harbor Concours d’Elegance
Bay Harbor, MI

1st Place Senior
2002 AACA National Fall Meet
Bay Harbor, MI

Presidents Cup
(Outstanding Restoration of the Years 1921-1942)
2003 AACA Annual Meeting
Philadelphia, PA

Class Award-Best Feature
100th Anniversary FOMCO
2003 Meadow Brook Concours d’Elegance
Rochester, MI

1st Place Grand National
2003 AACA Grand National Meet
Cedar Rapids, IA

Sr. Grand National
2004 AACA Grand National Meet
Amherst (Buffalo), NY

Best Restored K Lincoln,
BestOpen K Lincoln, Ladies Choice
2005 LZOC/LOC Lincoln on the Mountain Joint Meeting
Stratton Mountain, VT

1st Place Primary Lincoln Trophy (Repeat)
Best in Pre War Class
2006 LCOC National Meet Gilmore Museum
Hickory Corners, MI

Best of Class Awarded Senior
Badge #1184S
2006 CCCA Lincoln Experience
Gilmore Museum
Hickory Corners, MI

1st Place Senior & Elliston H. Bell Founders Trophy (Best of Show for most outstanding Senior Lincoln)
2006 LCOC Mid America National Meet
Indianapolis, IL

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