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Lot 528: Packard Standard Eight 833 berline

Grand Palais Sale, Bonhams (7 February 2013)

Introduced in 1924 models, the Packard straight-eight engine marked the beginning of a new era for both its esteemed manufacturer and the American prestige automobile. Led by the legendary Col. Jesse Vincent, Packard engineers had created a powerful, durable and nearly vibration-free inline eight. Combining this superb engine with the styling verve and elegance that set the marque apart in the later 1920s, the Packard Eight fairly defined the attributes of the cars we know today as Classics. For 1929, a new version of the Packard inline eight engine powered the automaker's Series 626 and 633 models. This 320cid, 90hp, "Standard Eight" engine was continued in corresponding 1930 Series 726 and 733 lines, with a new Detroit Lubricator carburetor replacing the former Packard design. Also new for '30 was a dual-belt water pump, accommodated by a one-inch increase in wheelbase and hood length. A four-speed manual transmission, incorporating a special extra-low gear useful for deep mud or snow, was standard. A convenient one-shot Bijur chassis lubrication system was also included. The following year, in 1931, further improvements were made, the Eights adopted the valve and manifold set up of the 734 Speedster and in doing so broke the magic 100 horsepower mark. The Bijur was now automatic and the fuel system replaced with a Stewart Warner fuel pump. Technically it could be considered one of the more significant leaps forward on an annual basis. Still a wide range of body styles were available, this being the Five Passenger Convertible Sedan. In British or European coachbuilding parlance would have been referred to as an All Weather, or Cabriolet and was one of the most versatile designs of its era, providing the option of fully open motoring for sunny days or being properly enclosed with a solid roof and full length windows for inclement conditions. As evidenced by the number of Packards in this collection, Charles H. Brown was a great proponent of the brand, a trait which he inherited, and this late Eight, in its rarer configuration complements the grouping of Twelve and Eight Cylinder open cars. The Packard was purchased by Mr. Brown at a regional automobile auction in 2004, prior to which it had spent a number of years in Spanish ownership. Before this it is known to have been in New York State in the 1980s and most probably had remained in the U.S. from new until this time. To judge from its current condition, we would expect it to have had new paint and upholstery since its arrival in Europe, i.e. within the last 30 years and in both respects these still present cleanly. Of particular pertinence is the fact that it retains quality accessories associated with the brand, including an Adonis mascot, C.M. Hall headlamps and a pair of Triple Speed driving lights, as well as the factory option of dual sidemounts. Looking every bit the 'Classic Era' automobile that it is, the Packard, is considered a 'Full Classic' by the Classic Car Club of America and would be eligible for their popular CARavan tours.

Lot Details
Auction Grand Palais Sale
Bonhams, Paris, France
Lot Number528
Outcome SOLD
Hammer Price€28000
Hammer Price (inc premium)€32200
Condition rating2
Registration number
Chassis number483111
Engine number327324
Engine capacity (cc)
Engine - cylinders
Number of doors