This 1940 Horch 853A Sport Cabriolet is sure set the tiny independent city-state of Monaco alight when the bidding starts in the forthcoming Coys Legende et Passion Monaco 2018 sale 11th May.
Poor sales accompanied by design and engineering problems, August Horch vacated his namesake company around 1910 to found yet another brand synonymous with his name translation. This time the Latin variation was the now power-brand Audi.
Germany was then, 1932 suffering from financial difficulties which resulted in Audi, Horch, DKW, and Wanderer merging to form Auto Union. 1933 saw August Horch reinstated as the head of the Horch-werke.
Coys reports that in the same year, Horch, still catering to the luxury market, launched the Type 830, followed by the 850 in 1934. The top Horch models were based on the fully developed straight eight- cylinder engines, and they reached the absolute pinnacle between 1937 and 1940, with the Type 853 and 951.
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The engine was now of five-litre capacity, and the 853 employed double- jointed rear axle shafts that were pioneered on the Porsche-designed Auto Union racing cars, providing fully independent de Dion rear type suspension. Front suspension consisted of an upper A-arm, with the lower hub being carried by a pair of transverse leaf springs.
Vacuum assisted hydraulic brakes were standard, as was a four-speed transmission with lever actuated overdrive that was usable in all four gears The result was a highly advanced chassis for the time, and one that would not be matched by most other car manufacturers until well into the post-war years.
Just as they were competitors on the track, with their team cars collectively known as the ‘Silver Arrows’, Horch and Mercedes-Benz also competed in the luxury market, and Horch decided directly to the 540K, design concept began, a wooden model was to respond built to assess the Horch Special Roadster. The decision was made to go ahead, and the construction of the car was undertaken by the factory works in Malan, Germany.
The car was shown briefly, but it was not initially sold, as plans to supercharge the car were contemplated. Ultimately, the straight eight was deemed sufficient for car, and the plans to supercharge it were abandoned. Although not supercharged like its rivals, the 853 models do have overdrive, which closes the performance gap.
This exquisite example of a 853 autobahn stormer, the 1940 Horch, chassis number 854402 was fitted with a 4,944cc inline overhead camshaft eight-cylinder engine and ZF five-speed overdrive transmission.
Detailed patina on the soft cream interior lifts the level of nostalgia well beyond its rivals, giving any future collector kudos in spades.
You can follow this auction in full detail here.
Images courtesy of Coys Auction