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1939 Horch 853 Stromlinien Coupé

1939 Horch 853 Stromlinien Coupé

1939 Horch 853 Stromlinien Coupé

Described as “a racing driver of genius” by Chris Nixon in the book Silver Arrows, Bernd Rosemeyer was one of the great pre-war race car drivers. He won 10 grand prix races in a very short time racing for Auto Union.

For his personal transportation, this streamlined coupe was uniquely commissioned. At the time, Horch was one of the leading names in the Auto Union brand which he drove for. The 852 chassis was a good choice, since it had a very capable 120 bhp engine and a decorative front grill to work from.

To begin the process, the standard 135 inch wheelbase was shortened. The coupe new body was designed by von Beeshaw at the Erdmann et Rossi design house. This resulted in a stunning two-seat coupe with ample performance. Rosemeyer nicknamed the car Manuela and used it right up his untimely death in 1938 trying to break the world’s speed record.

Just five years ago, Horch-Classic found the original Stromlinen Coupe in the Ukraine. It was recovered in a sad state with its rear bodywork removed for a truck bed. Over the next five years the new owner spent considerable time making a wooden buck for his coupe body. He had only eight photographs to reference when the making the buck.

To ensure that everything was just right, he made a complete replica car which first appeared in Germany in 2008. At the 2008 Techno Classica Show, the first Stromlinen Coupe made an appearance with its wooden buck. This car features a blank chassis plaque and was made in preparation to complete the real car.

Story by Richard Owen, research by Dirk de Jager

1939 Horch 853 Stromlinien Coupé Gallery

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In Detail

submitted by Richard Owen
engine Type T850 Straight-8
position Front Longitudinal
aspiration Natural
valvetrain SOHC, 2 Valves per Cyl
fuel feed Solex 35 JFF Carburetor
displacement 4494 cc / 274.2 in³
bore 87 mm / 3.43 in
stroke 104 mm / 4.09 in
compression 6.1:1
power 89.5 kw / 120 bhp @ 120 rpm
body / frame Body over Steel Frame
driven wheels RWD
front brakes Drums w/Hydraulic Assist
rear brakes Drums w/Hydraulic Assist
steering Worm & Nut
f suspension Independent w/Semi-Elliptic Springs, Hydraulic Shock Absorbers
r suspension DeDion Axle, Semi-Elliptic Springs, Hydraulic Shock Absorbers
transmission DeDion Axle, Semi-Elliptic Springs, Hydraulic Shock Absorbers
drag 1.0 Cd