Lot 43

2022   |   Geared Online Scottsdale Edition

1939 Ford Deluxe Four-Door Phaeton Convertible

From The Richard Donner Collection


$20,000 - $30,000| Without Reserve



Car Highlights

A Desirable and Rare Four-Door Deluxe Convertible

Given to Richard Donner by His Wife in the 1980s

Restored by Richard Donner and Kept at His Home on Orcas Island, Washington

Powered by the Legendary Ford Flathead V-8 Engine

A Desirable Model Offered from a Loving Home

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Hans Wurl

For 1939, Ford made many significant changes to its cars to further modernize the lineup. These improvements, which included the first fitment of hydraulic brakes, created some of the more desirable models of the 1930s. Bodywork and mechanical specification were refined, and the venerable flathead V-8 was now equipped with a downdraft carburetor, broadening its torque band. Coupe and sedan variants were available, as were two-door and four-door convertibles, such as the rare example offered here.

Richard Donner is remembered for always carrying a copy of Hemmings Motor News with him, as reading the publication was a favorite pastime. In 1993, during the mixing of the movie Lethal Weapon 3, which Donner directed and co-produced, his wife Lauren found an advertisement for this Ford Deluxe Phaeton Convertible circled on a Hemmings page. After enlisting a friend of Richard’s to help, she secretly acquired the car and gave it to him as a surprise. Painted tan at the time of purchase, the Ford was subsequently restored and finished in its current attractive maroon, a shade chosen by Donner himself. The older restoration has aged well, and the car shows the patina from years of careful use at the couple’s home on Orcas Island, Washington.

A prized component of Donner’s collection for nearly three decades, this Ford will certainly bring years of enjoyment to its next lucky caretaker.