Friday, February 17, 2012

1930 Packard 745 Waterhouse Convertible Victoria

106hp 385 cu. in. inline eight-cylinder engine with four-speed transmission, Bijur chassis lubrication, leaf spring solid front axle, leaf spring live rear axle and four-wheel mechanical drum brakes. Wheelbase: 145″

During the era of coachbuilt automobiles, Packard was the undisputed leader, selling more cars than all other fine car brands combined. No other manufacturer since has enjoyed such a commanding lead. Heads of state and captains of industry alike chose Packards for their personal transportation.

Many consider the 745 to represent the ultimate Packard from this period. Its long wheelbase (145 inches) provided the ultimate platform for the custom coachbuilders of the era to create what many consider to be their finest designs. For the 1931 845 chassis, Packard moved the cowl ahead, creating more body space, but shortening the hood by five inches. As a result, the long hood of the 745 series is highly prized by collectors today.
Additionally, the seventh series introduced the flowing fender line that has since come to characterize the classic era. Unlike the earlier cars, the line from the crown of the fender to the running board creates a single, beautiful, sweeping arc.

Most Packards were production cars – well built, luxurious, smooth, and quiet. Even these were frighteningly expensive, selling for the price of a very nice house. Most Packard buyers could well afford a comfortable, closed car. Consequently, the sportier open bodies are far rarer today – and coachbuilt ones are the rarest and most desirable of all.

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