The Hershey Auto Show always attracts a wide collection of memorable cars, and this year was no exception. But last month, one of the standout classics in Chocolate Town had to be this un-restored 1934 Brewster Enclosed-Drive Sedan. Check out what owner Don Weir had to say about the amazing history of this crowd-stopping automobile.
While you occasionally come across one of the roughly 135 known Ford-based Brewsters with their iconic heart-shaped grilles, it’s not every day you find one retaining its original finishes and owned by the same person for over 50 years.
While the Hershey Auto Show field was scattered with interesting marques and compelling stories, this well-preserved Brewster couldn’t escape our attention. Spotting the car by chance on used car lot in Pennsylvania, Don Weir immediately fell in love with the car and purchased the vehicle in 1963.
Known in the 1800s as the “Carriage Builders to American Gentlemen,” Brewster, based in Long Island City, New York, and subsequently purchased by Rolls-Royce of America of Springfield, Massachusetts, began producing its own Ford-based cars after Rolls ceased stateside production during the Great Depression. In a decision thought to be more suited for the economic state of the period, Brewster purchased Ford chassis over the next three years and built a luxury economy car of sorts. The cars were registered as Brewsters and sold in Rolls-Royce dealerships until a 1936 court ordered liquidation of Springfield Manufacturing Corporation forced an end to operations.
The car was designed by former Rolls-Royce designer Carl Beck and is most notable for its iconic heart-shaped grille. While the majority of Brewsters carried a $3,500 price tag and were placed on a V-8 Ford chassis, custom bodied cars were built for the ultra elite. Many celebrities and well-known industrial moguls owned the cars, including Edsel Ford.
Weir’s Enclosed-Drive Sedan features nicks and scrapes that Weir explains as “the patina that describes the use of the car and how it lived from its beginning until right now.”
The mission of the Historic Vehicle Association (HVA) is to promote the cultural and historical significance of the automobile and protect the future of our automotive past.