Fred and Augie Duesenberg were arguably the most gifted automobile designers through the 1920's, however design brilliance did not translate into sound business acumen.
However the Dusenberg brothers should not be singled out here, as many automobile manufacturers were to encounter financial difficulty during this time.
Enter Erret L. Cord, director of the Auburn
, who entertained grand plans to create automobiles the equal, if not better than the likes of such European marques as Hispano-Suiza
, Isotta-Fraschini, Rolls Royce
After buying out the Duesenberg operation, Cord also enlisted the help of Harry Miller to help design the Model J, the brief being that this new car would be the best in the world, no small feat!
Introduced in December 1928 at the New York fair, commentators of the day were immediately impressed by the daring techniques used in the new Duesenberg's creation, along with the enormous capacity of the engine. The only down-side seemed to be the asking price, $5800 US dollars being quite a sum for 1929.
The status of the car was further enhanced when Hollywood screen greats Clark Gable and Gary Cooper took delivery of theirs.