A Or B 2

First…from here comes the “news” that the FDA has asked a group of advisors to set aside December 8-10 to participate in meetings to discuss COVID vaccines. The meetings would be a key step in the agency’s emergency authorization process. If emergency use is approved next month that would represent the fastest vaccine development in history, by far. Maybe I’m out of my lane, but I think the ability to sequence the virus genome must have played a role in the speed of development AND will continue to revolutionize future vaccine research.

Second…from here comes the news that the FAA has cleared the Boeing 737 Max to fly after the planes were grounded for 20 months. Boeing has made the automated flight control system “less aggressive” and added more redundancies.

Yes, I rely on CNBC for my news. I don’t trust CNN and I don’t trust Fox News. I know I’m in the minority among Americans who seek news.


OK, after a long hiatus A Or B returns. Use whatever criteria you want to choose between these two cars that, in this case, have a lot in common.


See the source image

See the source image


The top picture of a 1935 Auburn Speedster 851 is from Mecum and the bottom picture of a 1937 Cord 812 is from Top Speed. Obviously, I chose photos that showed the most famous views of the cars.

Both cars represent the agony and the ecstasy of the Cord Corporation. Both exteriors were designed by the legendary Gordon Buehrig.

Do you care about specs? To me, these cars are more rolling sculpture than engineering marvels and, besides, cars from the 1930s cannot compare in any way to modern cars in terms of performance and reliability. OK…the highest output Auburn engine for 1935 was a 280 cubic-inch, supercharged inline-8, made by aircraft company Lycoming, that produced 150 HP, but probably had more torque than 150 LB-FT given its old-fashioned undersquare (bore < stroke) layout. The ’37 Cord had a 289 cubic-inch V-8 made by Lycoming, which in its highest supercharged spec made 190 HP.

From what is my most valuable book, Encyclopedia of American Cars by the Auto Editors of Consumer Guide®, comes this passage:


“Perhaps to avoid a brewing scandal over his management of these enterprises [Duesenberg, Cord, Lycoming, Ansted Engines, etc.], Cord fled to England in 1934 and promptly dropped from sight…Like a prodigal son, E.L. Cord returned from England in 1936 to salvage his crumbling empire, only to find the IRS and the Securities and Exchange Commission ready to launch major investigations of his doings.”


Cord’s automotive empire collapsed shortly thereafter and he sold what was left of his corporation in 1937. Of course, he later made millions in real estate and in uranium mines. He also became a US Senator from Nevada, which is where he moved after he sold his company.

I think Elon Musk represents the spirit of people like E.L. Cord and Preston Tucker. Of course, the automobile business is one that requires huge capital investment to succeed in any meaningful way. The sheer size has taken some of the romance away.

OK…1935 Auburn 851 Speedster or 1937 Cord 812? Please let me know which car you prefer and, if you are so inclined, why. Thanks.









If you like this blog please tell your friends and share the blog URL (https://disaffectedmusings.com). Thanks.




18 thoughts on “A Or B 2

  1. Both are quite good looking so that’s a draw. Both were available supercharged so that’s also a draw. I would give a slight edge to the Cord, only by the engineering for the front wheel drive. So I guess B for me.

    Not that I would kick either out of my garage, if there was an occasional oil drip on the floor.


    1. Loved this line: “Not that I would kick either out of my garage, if there was an occasional oil drip on the floor.”

      Thanks for commenting and for voting. 1-0 for the Cord.


  2. Not a big fan of the boat-tail models, I’ll take the Cord. 🙂

    Vaccine development on this speed scale is impressive. I just read an article in the NY Times about the results of a preliminary study that indicates long-term immunity could last years. Even though the antibodies disappear in a short time, memory cells imprinted with the signature of the virus are likely to provide a long-term protection from re-infection. Interesting that we are seeing the occasional report of reinfection already.

    I don’t watch any of the 24-hour news channels. They need to have constant stories and appear to have a bent, one way or another. I haven’t watched CNBC for news, but happened to catch Shepard Smith the other day.

    My usual source for news is both NBC and ABC nightly programs. I DVR them both and watch either or both on a given night.


    1. Thanks, sir. 2-0 for the Cord.

      Did you like the CNBC News broadcast with Shepard Smith? Oh, science isn’t perfect, but when it comes to epidemiology or vaccine research, I’ll take the scientist/doctor over the politician every time.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I did like his broadcast. I may add his program to the DVR schedule of rotation for my news sources.
        The difference between scientists and politicians is that scientists will change their opinions when presented with incontrovertible evidence to the contrary. >grin<


      2. As do I. Case in point, early on, scientists weren’t sure of the effectiveness of masks for the general public, though they thought them advisable for the medical community.

        After some research, the majority of scientists changed their mind. That’s the scientific method at work.


      3. People without perspective (I’m being nice…) call the change in opinion a flip-flop, which they think invalidates all information streaming from those sources. When ideology triumphs over common sense and empiricism, the result is sh*t. Yes, I know I have written those words recently in the blog.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. A. Just love the lines. It looks like it’s leaning forward even when still. I also like the rounded wheel wells on the back tires balancing the way the frame comes to a point at the back. The little details are worth noting as well. The hood ornament, insignia on the side, four hoses on the engine compartment—love ’em. And that cream and white combo is breathtaking.


  4. You REALLY make this choice a hard one. I love the lines of both and they are both, without a doubt, wonderful classics. If I had the cash and the garage space I would have both, even in yellow. That said, you make me choose one or the other. I will choose the Cord. The reason is that the great cowboy actor Tom Mix owned one and was driving his 1937 812 Cord when he was killed in a one car accident on Highway 79, 16 miles South of Florence, AZ. This after a night of drinking and gambling at the Santa Rita Hotel in Tucson. The car has been completely restored including repairing the damage from the accident.


  5. Is it possible when choosing between Auburn and Cord, one arrives at the answer ‘Duesenberg!?’ Probably not lol.
    I think I lean to the Auburn. The number of replica Speedsters would bother me a little, but beautiful as the Cord is the Auburn has a slight edge for me.


Comments are closed.