1912 Crane Model 3

4-passenger Sport Landau, body by Fred'k R. Wood & Sons
Bonhams Amelia Island 2021
Thursday, 20 May 2021
Not sold at a high bid of
$275,000 - $325,000
Est. Range
Lot Number
Concours restoration
Auction House
Chassis no. 25. Burgundy with maroon fenders and aprons and black leatherette top over rose cloth. RHD. 563/110hp L-head six, 4-speed, overdrive and disc front brakes added, varnished wood spoke wheels, 37x5 whitewalls, electric headlights, C.M. Hall kerosene sidelights and electric taillight, Klaxon electric horn, windshield sun visor, brass step plates, dual rear-mounted spares, black leather covered luggage trunk, stop light with turn signals.

Evaluation: Owned for many years by Duesenberg historian Fred Roe, first delivered to Helen Hartley Jenkins, one of only two Cranes known to exist. Excellent paint, brass and interior. Despite the front disc brakes there is scant evidence of touring use and it is quite spectacular. Howard Fafard collection.

Bottom Line: The more familiar Crane is from the subsequent period when a Crane design was built by Simplex, known as the Simplex-Crane, but this is the pure Crane, full of delicious design details and built of the finest materials to the highest standards with coachwork by an eminent New York coachbuilder. Its appeal to Fred Roe, who was steeped in the engineering and construction standards of Duesenberg, is ample endorsement of the Crane’s quality. For a rare and elegant vehicle with solid provenance and a concours-quality restoration the bid amount is surprisingly modest, but formal bodied automobiles are a heavy lift, even ones as good as this with a landau-style folding top. A missed opportunity.

by Rick Carey
7 June 2021
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