AUBURN — Jason Pokorny typically works on cars of the 1960s and ’70s, such as Chevrolet Camaros and Chevelles.
This month, he’s tending to a one-of-a-kind auto — a replica of the last Duesenberg ever built.
Pokorny is preparing the Maharaja Duesenberg for its Aug. 31 appearance in the Auburn Fall sale at Auburn Auction Park.
He calls it “neat for a guy like me to get my hands on it.”
The car is an 88% scale replica of an orange-and-black beauty built for the Maharaja Yeshwani Rao Holkar of India, according to literature about the auto. Delahaye USA, based in New Jersey, spent 18 years recreating the fiberglass-and-steel clone, with modern features such as power windows and a 502-cubic-inch big-block Chevy engine. Its brochure carries a list price of $279,000.
Pokorny said he received an unexpected call from Delahaye USA owner Terry Cook, saying he had been recommended to prepare the car for auction.
“You do good work, people will find you,” Pokorny said in explanation.
For the past year, customers have been able to find Pokorny on South Wayne Street in Auburn, in the former Haynes & Potter automotive dealership body shop. Before moving to Auburn, he was based in Fort Wayne, where he has been a manager for a well-known shop. In his new location, he works about 50% on standard collision repairs and 50% restoring vintage autos.
“I’ve been working in a body shop since I was a kid,” he said.
He now works only one block south of the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum, so it may be a natural that he would be asked to care for a Duesenberg replica.
“How can you ask for a better location, doing what I do?” Pokorny asked. “You’re in the classic car city of the world.”