5-6 October 2017

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Lot 246

1931 LaSalle V-8 Seven-Passenger Touring

  • Engine no. 904735

Sold for $100,000

  • Very rare seven-passenger touring style
  • Original coachwork as documented by its build sheet
  • Originally delivered in Buenos Aires
  • Classic Car Club of America (CCCA) Full Classic

Conceived to fill a gap between Buick and Cadillac, when introduced in 1927, the LaSalle has the distinction of being America’s first styled automobile.

In order to make the new car special, Cadillac president and general manager Lawrence Fisher recruited a young designer named Harley Earl from Don Lee, the Los Angeles Cadillac dealer. Lee had his own custom body shop, and Earl had made a name for himself designing cars for Hollywood stars and other LA luminaries. Until that time, what passed for styling had been done by “body engineers.” Earl, however, approached cars as objets d’art and, taking a cue from Hispano-Suiza, sketched up a car with flowing lines accented by two-tone paint. The success of LaSalle led to Earl’s appointment as head of a new GM section called “Art & Colour,” the automobile industry’s first in-house styling department.

Mechanically, the LaSalle was a small Cadillac, with a shorter wheelbase and a shorter stroke version of the Cadillac’s L-head V-8. For 1931, hood louvers were replaced by doors on both Cadillac and LaSalle V-8s. Together with radiator stone guards, this made them resemble the big V-12 and V-16 models. Cadillacs and LaSalles now rode the same wheelbase, 134 in., and had the same 353-cu. in., 95-bhp V-8 that had been introduced on Cadillac the year before.

The seven-passenger touring offered here is recorded on its original build sheet as having been delivered to Buenos Aires, Argentina, at the time of Cadillac’s boom export markets, with the same body style that it carries today. It eventually made its way to the United States and was restored in this exciting color scheme, a reversal of the original Pearl Grey and Vermillion, and converted to left-hand drive, for ease of use on American roads and highways. With its painted wire wheels, wide whitewall tires, and rakish color scheme, led by a body-hued radiator and Goddess mascot, it looks ready to lead a local parade!

The 1927–1933 LaSalles are recognized by the Classic Car Club of America as being Full Classics, and therefore this would be a superb entrant for a CARavan or to exhibit at one of the Club’s many events. It is also, of course, eligible for any number of Antique Automobile Club of America events, and would best be used to carry several friends around Hershey during the annual National Fall Meet. It has style, performance, and brio in spades!

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver


+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat


+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht


+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig


+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose


+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould


+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff


+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach


+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry


+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut


+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire


+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn


+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin


+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill


+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher


+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers


+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden


+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more