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Esval Models 1:24 1929 Cord L-29 Coupe: Count Alexis de Sakhnoffsky

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Esval Models 1:24 1929 Cord L-29 Coupe: Count Alexis de Sakhnoffsky

Esval Models 1:24 1929 Cord L-29 Coupe: Count Alexis de Sakhnoffsky

Cord was the brand name of an American luxury automobile company from Auburn, Indiana, manufactured by the Auburn Automobile Company from 1929 to 1932 and again in 1936 and 1937.

The Cord Corporation was founded and run by E. L. Cord as a holding company for his many transportation interests, including the Auburn Automobile Company. Cord was noted for its innovative technology and streamlined designs.

This was the first American front-wheel drive car to be offered to the public, beating the Ruxton automobile by several months, in 1929. The brainchild of former Miller engineer Cornelius Van Ranst, its drive system borrowed from the Indianapolis 500-dominating racers, using the same de Dion layout and inboard brakes. Built in Auburn, Indiana, the Cord was the first front-wheel-drive car to use constant-velocity joints. While commonly used today in all front-wheel-drive vehicles, their first use was on the 1929 Cord. The lack of rear drivetrain components and straight frame (without rear kick-up to clear up the rear axle) allowed it to be much lower in height than competing cars whose average height was about six feet or almost two metres. Both stock cars and special bodies built on the Cord chassis by American and European coachbuilders won prizes in contests worldwide. The L-29 came with full instrumentation, including a temperature gauge, oil pressure gauge, and speedometer on the left with a gas gauge, oil level gauge, and Ammeter on the right of the steering wheel.

It was powered by Auburn's 4,934 cc (301 cu in) 125 hp (93 kW) L-head 120, with the crankshaft pushed out through the front of the block and the flywheel mounted there, driving a three-speed transmission. Gearing in both transmission and front axle was inadequate, and the 4,700 lb (2,100 kg) car was underpowered, limited to a trifle over 80 mph (130 km/h), inadequate even at the time, and readily exceeded by the less expensive Auburn.[2] Still, the styling was lovely, and despite the 137.5 in (3,490 mm) wheelbase and steering demanding fully four turns lock-to-lock, handling was reportedly superb. Priced around US$3,000, ($44,669 in 2019 dollars) it was competitive with Cadillac, Marmon, Lincoln, Packard, Franklin, and Stutz; the 1930 Chrysler copied several styling elements. It could not outrun the Great Depression, and by 1932, it was discontinued, with just 4,400 sold. Wheelbase was 137.5" and the height of the sedan was 61".

Count Alexis de Sakhnoffsky (born 12 November 1901, Kiev, Kiev Governorate, Russian Empire (present day Ukraine) – Died: April 27, 1964, Atlanta, Georgia, United States) was a Russian-American industrial designer, known principally for his Streamline-style automotive designs.

Sakhnoffsky was born in Kiev, Ukraine. The Sakhnovskys were well-known since the Ukrainian cossack period. They are united with other Cossack Hetman families such as the Zabilas, the Lysenkos, the Bezborodkos, and the Polubotkos as well as famous noble families like the Gogol-Yanovskys, the Tereschenkos, and others. Sakhnoffsky came from a wealthy aristocratic family. He was the son of Prince Vladimir Sakhnovsky, who was the new commandant of the station port in the First World War, the port manager of the Petrograd customs office, and chairman of the acceptance of vehicles supplied by Russia's allies. The prince committed suicide in 1917. Sakhnoffsky's mother was M. I. Tereshchenko's (millionaire and sugar industrialist) daughter. The family had a "Mercedes" car, which led to a creative future fate of the artist.

After his father's death in 1917 Sakhnoffsky joined the army of White Russian General Pyotr Wrangel. In early 1920 after the Bolshevik revolution he emigrated from his motherland. At first he lived in Paris, where his mother's aunt lived. Then he emigrated to Switzerland in 1919 and by the 1920s had become a well-known designer of European sports cars. He relocated to North America in 1929 and was employed by the Hayes Body Corporation where he did design work for several Hayes customers like Auburn, Cord, and American Austin automobiles. The 1929 Cord L-29 he designed for himself (and which was built at Hayes) won the Grand Prize at the 1929 Monaco Concours d'Elegance and the Grand Prix d'Honneur at the 1929 Beaulieu Concours. He went to Packard in the early 1930s, and although he did not stay there for long he helped set the company's design direction for the next several years. De Sakhnoffsky later did work for White trucks among others.

In the early 1950s Sakhnoffsky teamed up with Preston Tucker (after Tucker's tumultuous acquittal from an SEC trial over the Tucker '48) funded by investors from Brazil. They began initial designs to build a sports car called the Tucker Carioca. But Tucker's travels to Brazil were plagued by fatigue and upon his return to the United States he was diagnosed with lung cancer. Tucker died from pneumonia as a complication of lung cancer. The Tucker Carioca was never developed.

Sakhnoffsky also completed numerous other design projects including bicycles, kitchen items, and furniture. He served as a technical editor for Esquire magazine from 1934 until the 1960s.

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