ORIGINAL 1931  L-29 Cord LaGrande  Boattail Speedster

Duesenberg custom built cars SS J - 563 and SS J- 567 with 125'' inch wheelbase chassis. The rolling chassis was sent to the factory's in - house Coachbuilder Union City Body Works, better known as LaGrande to be clothed with unique " Sweep Panel " Speedster Coachwork. The cars were eventually sent to Connersville Indiana where ACD moved their finishing operations in 1934, then to Los Angeles factory branch , where they were prominently displayed in the showroom as  Roadster promotional vehicles; perhaps as a last resort effort to attract new buyers. SSJ - 563 would not sit idle long, as Hollywood screen actor Gary Cooper saw the unique Speedster and bought it off the showroom floor for $ 16,000. When Cooper presented the new car to his wife Veronica, she immediately expressed disdain for the colors of the car and refused to drive or ride in it until it was repainted. Cooper took the car the car back to the factory in Los Angeles and had it painted a two tone gray, but opted to retain the caramel leather interior. As with SSJ - 567, it also had been sent to the Union City Body Works to be clothed with similar "Sweep Panel'' Coachwork. The only differentiating Coachwork features on SSJ - 567 were the typical curved tails of the rear fenders and the presence of the Duesenbird radiator cap. Finished in high gloss black laquer with tan ostrich leather interior. SSJ - 567 also featured headlight bowls painted to match the body, black lacquered steel wheels and a rear mounted encased spare.

ORIGINAL 1931 L-29 Cord LaGrande Boattail Speedster

  Auburn Automobile Movie Scenes


Initially the automobile was equipped with WoodLite headlamps, which was common for the New York Auto Salon Show, but not practical or really desired by many for actual night driving.  Named after Inventor William G. Woods.

Dick Tracy with Madonna

Duesenberg's basic sweep panel LaGrande convertible sedan , these were also built in Union City  Indiana.

Original L-29 Cord lagrande Speedster

1935 Union City Fire Department Parade.

Philip O. Wright , a  designer who was responsible for some of the sportiest Duesenberg Model J's ever created , presented this sleek boattail speedster design (Front wheel drive). The coachwork was built by Union City Body Company, part of E.L.Cord's growing industrial complex.Completed in time for it's debut at the New York Auto Salon public Showing in 1931, the car was introduced as the Lagrande Speedster. It then departed to France where it appeared with actress Suzy Vincent at the Paris Concours d'elegance and achieved First Place.                                                                  The Lagrande Speedster was returned to the states for another showing, then sent back to Europe, it disappeared in Europe and not the slightest hint of it's fate has yet to surface. Only one Cord L-29 was bodied with Philip Wrights front wheel drive Lagrande Speedster coachwork. The Lagrande Speedster is believed to have been lost during World War II . Recreation started in 1995 and was completed in 2004, consuming 20,000 man-hours, meticulously recreated in every detail , even in its original colors of Royal Cranberry and Cashmere Cream. 

  1.  1929 Duesenberg Model J Convertible

Sea Biscuit


A bar set including two decanters is designed into the passenger door.

1931 E-1 Experimental L-29 CORD Limousine

Here is one of two hardtop coupes that was built by the Union City Body Company for Duesenberg in 1930 for the 1931 model year (Fixed Top Coupes) with individual sliding seats, patented by the Union City Body Company.

Remington Steele

Photo of a 1931-33 Auburn Boattail Speedster with open suicide door, taken around the same time period in Union City, In. at  the southwest corner of the McDonalds restaurant intersection.

1931 Cord L-29 laGrande Speedster re-creation

ORIGINAL 1931 L-29 Cord LaGrande Boattail Speedster

Union City built 8 LaGrande bodies for the Cord L-29's ''Custom" body program, 2 Town cars, 2 Victorias, 1 Coupe,1 ( Salon ) Sedan, 1 Boattail Speedster and 1 Sedan.

The Great Gatsby

Indiana Jones  and the Temple of Doom

A cigar rack is built into driver's door.