Packard Twin Six Convertible Sedan

Packard’s Twelve was the signature car of the classic era: the top-of-the-line offering from America’s leading manufacturer of fine cars. It was the Brooks Brother’s suit of the time – a conservative car with finely tailored lines, elegant appointments, a refined chassis and a whisper-quiet, 12-cylinder engine.

In a sense, Packard’s Twelve was never meant to be. In fact, the car’s history goes back to the Cord L-29 and the great Miller-engined front-drive racecars. Packard’s management was intrigued with the idea of front drive and commissioned the construction of a prototype. A decision was made to develop a 12-cylinder engine for this new car, as the shorter length of a V-12, compared with Packard’s venerable inline eight, allowed more flexibility in packaging the front drive chassis.

Extensive testing revealed weaknesses in the front drive chassis’ design, and anticipated development costs soared. Meanwhile, Cadillac had ignited the multi-cylinder race with their exquisite new 16- and 12-cylinder models, and Packard’s dealerships were feeling the pressure.

The solution, born of necessity, created one of the defining models of the classic era: install the new 12-cylinder engine in Packard’s proven Deluxe Eight chassis. The result was christened the Twin Six, in honor of Packard’s first V-12, introduced more than 15 years earlier.

It is what many believe to be the ultimate Twelve. It was the last year for cars with flowing fenders and classic lines, before the advent of the streamlined look. The front ensemble is truly beautiful, with a graceful vee-shaped radiator and matching headlights and fender lights. And the dash is a work of art, looking more like a jeweler’s display than an instrument panel.

This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in July of 2011 at The Inn at St. John's, Plymouth, Michigan.

160 bhp, 445 cu. in. side valve V-12 engine with three-speed synchromesh transmission, shaft drive with hypoid rear axle, suspension via four longitudinal semi-elliptical leaf springs, front beam axle, live rear axle, and four-wheel adjustable vacuum-assisted brakes. Wheelbase: 147".

Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright

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