Facing trying times for 1932, Hupmobile management pulled out all the stops and hired Raymond Loewy to design a new and distinctive look to try to lure buyers into the salesroom. Loewy created a look for the new eight-cylinder Hupp, which when compared with what was offered by other automakers, it was actually a year or two ahead of its time. The lines and shape of the fenders, the angled windshield and the bold radiator ornament gave the new car a look all of its own.
For 1932, both conventional six and eight-cylinder L-head models were offered, five of which were carried-over from 1931. The new Loewy styling was used on two of the five straight eight chassis’ offered. In addition to the styling changes, there were a number of mechanical and structural refinements. High on the list was the introduction of an X-member in the center of the frame and a series of triangulated braces incorporated into the body shell that when combined made for a very strong and rigid structure. Illustrations above courtesy of Alden Jewell.
Not resting with the fresh styling, structural and mechanical refinements, Hupmobile sponsored Russ Snowberger’s entry in the 1932 Indianapolis 500. He was given a new Hupp straight engine that he then race-prepared, added a bank of four down-draft Winfield racing carburetors, and fitted it into his 1931 racing car seen below.
Snowberger qualified in the forth position while setting a speed that was 2-m.p.h. faster than when his car was Studebaker-powered the year before. He finished the race on the lead lap in fifth place behind three Miller-powered cars and a Studebaker Factory prepared car. The engine was later installed in the Bonneville Hupp that has been reported to have set a speed of 146 m.p.h. on the Salt Flats.