Pick of the Day: 1948 Packard Super 8

Yes, I admit it, I do admire cars that look like inverted bathtubs, thus my affinity for the Porsche 356. In the late 1940s and early ’50s, that was an aerodynamic trend, and there’s something about the styling of that era that just does it for me.

The Pick of the Day is a prime example of great bathtub design, a 1948 Packard Super Eight two-door sedan, the first year that the automaker produced the controversial styling; some saw it as sleek and modernistic. Others, not so much.

The paint and chrome look to be in very good condition

After World War II, Packard struggled to maintain the brand’s rich luxury heritage. Packard, which started producing cars in 1899, created some of the world’s most luxurious and desirable classic cars before the war, as well as a lineup of high-quality mid-range automobiles, all sold under the famous slogan, “Ask the man who owns one.”

But money was tight for Packard in the late 1940s, and redesigns were expensive. So the 1948-50 models were rebodied versions of the earlier cars, although that was not necessarily such a bad thing. The styling was a bold attempt at bringing back Packard’s relevance as an innovator.

Particularly attractive on this model-year Packard is the chrome slotted grille that wraps around to the front wheel wells. Very elegant.

The interior appears to be restored to original

“As a true appreciator of rare, valuable classics you will certainly enjoy taking a look at this 1948 Packard Super Eight Coupe,” according to the private seller in San Gabriel, California, advertising the Packard on ClassicCars.com. “It features a beautiful and stately body style that offers a nostalgic remembrance of a simpler era, laced with classic authenticity.”

The Packard proved its mettle on a recent tour, the seller wrote: “It just successfully participated in the well-known 2017 San Marino Motor Classic.”

The two-door styling is rarer and better-looking than that of the four-door sedan, and this one looks very clean, with an attractively original interior.

Power is provided by a 427cid flathead straight-8

“The crème-and-dark-green custom paint is complimented by whitewall tires and a beautifully maintained creme/brown and burlwood-trim interior,” according to the ad. “Powered by a 327 straight-8 engine that is paired with a 3-on-the-tree, this charming Packard is eager to get out on the road for an enjoyable driving experience.”

The car has fewer than 44,000 miles showing on the odometer, the seller notes, with
extra effort put into its care and restoration.

“Copious amounts of time and energy have been invested into maintaining its original look and luster,” the ad says. “The body has been fully restored and it comes with many highlights, such as its factory radio, chrome trim and many more.”

The asking price for the Packard is a modest $21,000, so you wouldn’t really have to worry about taking bath on the deal.

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day

Cars from acclaimed Astor collection at Russo and Steele

A handsome 1932 Packard 902 coupe roadster is part of the Devotion Collection | Russo and Steele photos
A handsome 1932 Packard 902 coupe roadster is part of the Devotion Collection | Russo and Steele photos

Broadcasting pioneer Art Astor was a remarkable presence in Southern California, and the entire country, for that matter. As broadcaster and owner during the heyday of rock ‘n roll AM radio in the 1950s and ’60s, he built the presence of his stations, which eventually became the Astor Broadcast Group, and they continued their power and appeal into this century.

As his wealth grew, Astor became an inveterate collector of cultural artifacts, such as vintage radios, toys, slot machines, juke boxes and autographed photos of Hollywood stars. Most notably, Astor was a collector of great old cars, which numbered into the hundreds. Astor died in December at the age of 91. Continue reading

New AACA award to pick the best Restoration of the Year

A 1930 Packard at the AACA meet in Hershey, Pennsylvania | Andy Reid
A 1930 Packard at the AACA meet in Hershey, Pennsylvania | Andy Reid

The Antique Automobile Club of America has initiated a new annual award, the Zenith Award for the Restoration of the Year, which will be chosen this year from 20 vehicles selected from AACA meets held during 2016.

Two exquisite cars from each of last year’s meets were chosen to compete for the award, with 13 manufacturers represented. The earliest car is a 1903 Holley and the newest a 1966 Chevrolet Corvette. Of special interest is a 1934 Duesenberg and a faithfully restored 1964 Ford Galaxie Holman & Moody NASCAR race car. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1936 Packard 120 rumble-seat coupe

The beautiful Packard 120 in a beautiful setting
The beautiful Packard 120 in a beautiful setting

The fascination with pre-war classic cars, which after all started the collector car hobby, has been fading during the past decade as new generations of enthusiasts have come on the scene. Yet there are still those who love and collect the special-interest automobiles of their grandparents’ and great-grandparents’ eras.

The Pick of the Day might not be a “true classic” as defined by the Classic Car Club of America, but the 1936 Packard 120 three-window coupe is a beautiful craft that evokes the lush styling of the 1930s. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1948 Packard Super 8 Victoria convertible

The Packard super 8 convertible was the automaker's most expressive car
The Packard Super 8 convertible was the automaker’s most expressive car

Packard’s first modern redesign after World War II appeared in 1948 with polarizing “bathtub” styling, meant to be sleekly streamlined but which critics said looked like a pregnant elephant. The Packard did look bulbous, but today’s collectors see something majestic and appealing in the rounded-off form with its striations of glittering chrome that encircle the front end.

The Pick of the Day is a 1948 Packard Super 8 Victoria convertible, the Detroit automaker’s halo car of the era. In case you’re wondering, that chrome-plated bird taking flight from the prow of this luxury yacht is a cormorant. Continue reading

Mulholland Speedster wins top prize at Sacramento Autorama

The custom 1936 Packard racked up a number of top awards | Sacramento Autorama
The custom 1936 Packard racked up a number of awards at Autorama | Sacramento Autorama photos

The stunning Mulholland Speedster, a custom 1936 Packard roadster built to emulate the grand coachbuilt cars of the 1930s, has claimed its second top prize this year, winning Custom d’Elegance honors Sunday at the 67th annual Sacramento Autorama.

In January, the V12-powered Packard, built by Troy Ladd of Hollywood Hot Rods, claimed the honor of America’s Most Beautiful Roadster at the Grand National Roadster Show in Rancho Cucamonga, California. Ladd is the first builder to achieve both prestigious awards in a single year. Continue reading

Custom ’36 Packard is America’s Most Beautiful Roadster

A Packard named the 'Mulholland Speedster' was picked at the 68th annual Grand National Roadster Show | AMBR photos
A Packard named the ‘Mulholland Speedster’ was picked at the 68th annual Grand National Roadster Show | AMBR photos

Low and long, and emulating the great coachbuilt cars of the 1930s, a custom 1936 Packard called the “Mulholland Speedster” was selected as America’s Most Beautiful Roadster at the 68th annual Grand National Roadster Show in Rancho Cucamonga, California.

The winning Packard special, built by Troy Ladd of Hollywood Hot Rods and owned by Bruce Wanta, was selected at the culmination of the three-day show that featured more than 1,000 hand-built street rods and custom cars. More than 40,000 people attended the show. Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1939 Packard 1708 Limousine

3944792-1939-packard-1708-limousine-std
1939 Packard 1708 Limousine

Being at SEMA, I’ve seen a lot of interesting creations, most of them intricate and interesting to look at, but at times they can feel overwhelming. Sure, SEMA is about the aftermarket which means a lot of mods and restoration components, but sometimes it’s good to just step back and appreciate the beauty of the original car without so many visual distractions.

Continue reading

Pick of the Day: 1953 Packard Cavalier

Packard produced its Cavalier model for only three years
Packard produced its Cavalier model for only three years

Pick of the Day is a 1953 Packard Cavalier offered with only 71,831 miles since new, and with its exterior in original condition.

“During the mid-1950s, Packard needed to reinforce its identity as a premium luxury car manufacturer in the face of challenges from the Big Three,” the private seller from Trabuco Canyon, California, writes in the advertisement on ClassicCars.com. “With the ever newer car designs of the decade, the visual distinctions that had defined Packard were disappearing, interior luxury and performance were harder to express, and Packard management was regretting its decision to produce the entry-level Clipper series. Continue reading

Fire razes building used by America’s Packard Museum; classic cars, artifacts, equipment destroyed

Part of the destruction after the fire at the America’s Packard Museum facility | Jim Noelker/WHIO TV
Part of the destruction after the fire at the America’s Packard Museum facility | Jim Noelker/WHIO TV

A devastating fire destroyed a warehouse used by America’s Packard Museum near Dayton, Ohio, consuming a number of classic cars, irreplaceable parts and artifacts, and restoration facilities. The building is separate from the museum itself, which is located in the city of Dayton. Continue reading