Issued on the 10th anniversary of the car that never was, this incredible die-cast model is the creation of acclaimed designer Raffi Minasian. Inspired by the modernist lines of the Art Deco movement, it captures all the romance of a bygone era. The graceful sweep of the fenders, the luxuriously appointed interior complete with a crystal-clear steering wheel - every detail of the designer's vision brought unforgettably to life. Hand-painted an elegant Midnight Ghost, this special anniversary Limited Edition bears the designer's signature on a plaque mounted to the undercarriage.
The Coupe Simone – A Brief History
The story of the Duesenberg Coupe Simone and Emmett-Armand Coachworks was first revealed in 1996 at The Franklin Mint Museum exhibit, "Crossroads." Chronicled by Designers Roger Hardnock and Raffi Minasian, this unique presentation revealed the recently discovered remnants of the coachworks, a diary of the events leading up to the delivery of the Simone in Paris, and drawings of this unusual car under development.
In 1998, Franklin Mint Precision Models released the first and only 1:24 scale die-cast replica of the Coupe Simone. Collectors throughout the precision model community have welcomed this innovative and dynamic model as an integral part of their collections, sharing the story and unique history of this imaginative vehicle.
In celebration of the ten-year anniversary of the release of the Duesenberg Coupe Simone, Franklin Mint Precision Models is proud to present the Duesenberg Coupe Simone "Midnight Ghost" 10th Anniversary Signature Edition.
History of the Commemorative Paint Scheme – The "Midnight Ghost"
Emmett-Armand Coachworks had been working on the Coupe Simone for more than a year when plans began to develop for new projects. In 1938, with the growing interest in special-bodied cars, Emmett became immersed in the business and promotion of the coachworks throughout the Eastern States. At home, Armand focused on the details of the coachworks while Emmett traveled as far West as Chicago, engaging new clients through many of his extended family contacts.
As the car was prepared for the initial showing to Gui LaRouche, Armand was notified that the chassis was being shipped, and within two weeks they could expect delivery. Upon arrival, Emmett and Armand were shocked to find the chassis equipped with a fully prepped, supercharged engine. Seeing this opportunity, Armand convinced Emmett to present the car to LaRouche in "sporting trim." The two worked several nights preparing the car in a daring black paint scheme, with blackwall tires and highly polished supercharger.
LaRouche, a wealthy cosmetics king and patron for the project, arrived at the coachworks late in the evening. Had the train been on time, LaRouche might have arrived earlier and appreciated the subtlety of the metallic black and silver trim as it glowed in the early sunset light. Instead, he was not pleased with the "rather evil appearance," calling upon Emmett and Armand to "please research a color combination more becoming to that of his refined tastes." Emmett, attempting to divert LaRouche's discontent, invited him to take the car for a drive. An excerpt from Armand's diary recalls the results:
"Although the two had only left a few minutes before, their early return was punctuated by the fact that Emmett was driving. LaRouche exited the car visibly shaken as Emmett came around to steady him, stumbling with his walking cane. We offered LaRouche (more accustomed to chauffeurs) some calming tea as he confessed that he had only driven a few times in cars featuring no more than 20 or 30 horsepower. His ghostly white face and trembling hands convinced us that the supercharged version of this car would be nothing more than a waste and certainly a hazard to our client. Emmett and I removed the supercharger and offered it for return to the Duesenberg Company. Curiously, they encouraged us to retain the unit should we have a use for it in future projects." Emmett