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All About Packards

Mr. Shiftright-check out this month's issue of
FORBES magazine. There is a guy who is planning to
revive the PACKARD name-he bought the rights for
$50,000., and plans to produce an all-aluminum,
luxury sedan next year. He seems to be
well-capitalized, but what do you think of his
chances? The name is rather old-I can't believe
that anybody under 45 has much familiarity with it.


  • His chances? Less than zero...he should pay attention to the corpses of similar revivals....Duesenberg, Bugatti, Cord to name a few. Those days are over. Any car that wishes to compete in the modern world would have to look and perform so differently that the connection to the old names is pretty meaningless anyway. And if he's planning to build a replica of the old car, he'll surely fail. This is a notoriously unprofitable enterprise, and often makes a mockery of the original car (Bugatti revival excepted--a magnificent car that still failed).
  • rea98drea98d Posts: 982
    I beleive a couple of visionaries with radical new cars tried that before. Tucker and DeLorean, if I recall their names. I wonder whatever happened to those two :-)?
  • The last person to successfully put his name on a car that didn't die immediately was Walter Chrysler in 1924.
  • Did any single independent auto manufacturer beat Packard's record of 57 years (of real Packards, not Studebaker-Packards), and still fail ?
  • giacgiac Posts: 1
    I was recently travelling and flipped thru a car had a picture of a car they called the new packard 12...a four door new sedan, with a high grill in the center, high headlights, and french curves/hood slope between them almost to bumper level...the back end looks pregnant. Wh is making this car and are there other models?...i can't find anything on the net, and can't remember the car mag i saw it in.....
  • Well, Studebaker produced cars for 62 years before failing, but not as an independent, so I guess Packard does hold that record as near as I can tell.

    Oldest existing domestic nameplate is, of course Olds-mobile, and may be the oldest existing in the entire world (don't say Benz, they were merged with Mercedes in 1926). Fiat and Peugeot are 1899, Renault is 1898, but Olds is 1896.

    I'm still thinking...
  • heimyheimy Posts: 13
    Buick is 1903. I've got a '53 Buick with a 50th Anniversary emblem on the steering wheel.

    Anybody under 45 remembering Packard...highly unlikely. I'm 46, so I just made the cut. My grandpa had a '49, a big ugly ol' bathtub of a car. Personally, I think the '57 Hawk looks kinda cool...
  • Yeah, it does, but that's a Studebaker, not a Packard. No real Packards after 1956.
  • Pretty pathetic at the end, huh--28.835 cars. No way to run a railroad. Poor Packard was really dead even before World War II, I think. They just hung on another 11 years, but they weren't all that much fun for the company.
  • Actually, every book you read on the subject has a different number it seems, but she's probably right, or close...the 1937 and 1949 numbers are very close and I think it depends on how you count them, from calendar year (jan. to jan.) or fiscal year, from 9-36 to 9-37, etc. This is probably where the discrepancies come up, and why 1949 comes out first sometimes. I think the difference between the two years can't be more than a few thousand, maybe 5,000 at most. 1949 was popular because the automatic came out then.
  • dranoeldranoel Posts: 79
    Boy it's quiet in here---not many Packard fans on the internet, I guess. It's been 44 years since the last real Packard was produced. Most Packards have been off the road for many years and even the "beater" Packards have been off the road for about 25 years. I'm sure the bulk of the "Packardaphiles" are above 50++ (as I am). Oh well the site has some activity.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    I'm probably a fairly typical boomer, and I grew up in the '50s seeing lots of Packards, but most of them were pretty strange-looking, except for the '55-6s. That may explain the lack of interest: not many of us can remember the classic Packards.
  • MrShift@EdmundsMrShift@Edmunds Posts: 43,632
    Packard styling postwar from 1946 was unfortunate...but financially the company wasn't all that strong anyway...the styling just helped to drag it down. 1955 was a pretty bad car, 1956 made a lot of improvements, but all too late. The really great Packards were made in the 1930s, and upon those few years the entire reputation of the company rests I think.
  • carnut4carnut4 Posts: 574
    I was watching the "My Classic Car" TV show recently, and one of the cars on the show was a 47 Packard fastback 2dr, which had been made in to a street rod, with a big block Chev, etc. The
    body had undergone a few mods, all of which, to me, seemed to enhance the styling of the car. Now I know most of the true classic "Packardophiles" out there might detest such a car, but to me, it seemed like kind of a tribute that someone would spend that much money to make an old Packard into a street rod. Actually, I kinda liked it. A change from the standard 30's-40's something Chevy-Ford street rods.
    I remember an uncle of mine, [who drove Nashes exclusively] once bought a '47 Packard 2dr, like this rod I saw, to pull his travel trailer. This was in 1957. I thought it was interesting at the time that he'd bought a 10 year old Packard to pull his travel trailer.
    I'm 36 and I love Packards because no body in my generation or younger even knows what the hell they are. Over the course of my restoration I've exposed countless younger guys to what this great old dame of a brand use to be.

    My bathtub 49 may not be a looker to a lot of you older folks but man does that art deco dash, bulbous body lines, and endless flat head eight amaze the younger generation. When these twenty somethings see that huge 6 volt battery slowly chugh, chugh, chugh..........whirrr to start that smooth running flat head eight they can't believe their eyes.

    I'm certainly not the standard Packard owner but let me tell you I can't wait to get this car finished and hook it up to my Aerostream trailer for a weekends down at San Onofre State Beach Park with long Boards, roof racks, and all. There aint a surf'n rig like this on the entire coast of Califonia!
  • billy9billy9 Posts: 19
    I think that's cool. I know what you mean I'm 38 and bought a 56 Mercury. Probably not a car that most people of that era would want, but sure is cool to me, I like em different. I think the back quarters look a little like the '56 Packard.
    Mercs from the 50's always seem to make great chop jobs and or low riders. Packards by the mid 50's had mostly become pretty pathetic pieces of junk except maybe the Carribeans, and even those are a pain in the [non-permissible content removed] to own and maintain.

    A couple of years ago at a Packard Club event I saw an orginal low mileage 57 Packard Country Sedan Station Wagon with factory blower V-8. The owner said it was a rocket but man did it look like it'd been slapped together with whatever they could find in the parts bin that day.

    I'd probably have bought that car if I saw it today because it was just so frickn unique and ugly to boot. Damn the rear of that car was weird! I've never seen another one of those cars since.
  • b4zb4z Posts: 3,372
    I know that i am the first to post here in three months, so i hope there is somebody ou there.
    I am 37 years old, not your typical Packard fan,
    but i have always liked the cars.
    I am interested in the the cars built from about 1934-1939.
    Does anybody have any suggestions on what i should buy as a novice?
    Should i get a $5000-6000 beater or move up to something in the $15,000 plus range.
    I am not interested in a convertible. Just the sedans.
  • Probably a Junior Eight (120) coupe would be your best bet...your won't have to pay the premium price for a Senior Eight car. The six cylinder cars are the cheapest but they are, correspondingly, not as good investments if you start restoring one. But a 120 coupe can be a fun car and quite handsome, even though by this time Packard was borrowing quite heavily from GM styling.
  • b4zb4z Posts: 3,372
    Should read. I kind of came to that feeling myself.
This discussion has been closed.