Tuesday, February 2, 2010

1948-1950 Packard Eight Touring Sedan



"Ask the man who owns one"

Being once THE aristocratic american automobile, and as such more "upper-class" than all the Cadillacs, Buicks and Imperials together, today this Packard Eight from Havana is just a poor shadow of its former self. Chrome-trim and paint are gone after over 60 years, and make it impossible to determine the exact year of its production.

The car was introduced as the Clipper already in 1941. Untypical for Packard, famous external designers took part in its development, such as George Walker (who later should claim the styling of the 1949 Ford), and Howard "Dutch" Darrin, designer of the Kaiser, as the main influencees. When the car was presented in 1941, it was a hit, and so successful, that Packard decided to base all models on the Clipper's body. After the "war-break", which lasted from 1942 to 1946, the Packards received a heavy-handed facelift in 1948, which by any means couldn't hide the car's pre-war origins. Main differences were the new hood with a Lincoln-like front grille, and the "Ponton"-style side section with the fenders running through from front to back, which made for extremely thick doors, because the interior panels haven't been touched. Soon, these unfortunate proportions were dubbed "pregnant elephant". But in the styling-craze of the emerging 50s, this Packard-styling anyway soon was a thing from the past.

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