In 1934, Harold T. Ames filed a patent application for his retractable headlamps. The design would later become one of the defining details on Ames' most triumphant project, the Cord 810. Ames, then the chief executive at Duesenberg, asked Cord designer Gordon Buehrig to make a "baby version" of the Duesenberg car. Buehrig's response, the Cord 810, is widely held to be one of the most influential cars in American automotive history. It was the last great offering of the Auburn, Cord, and Duesenberg triumvirate, as the company became insolvent at the end of the Depression.

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