Friday, November 15, 2013

Extinction...

Saturn and Hummer, Pontiac and Oldsmobile, Plymouth and Mercury, AMC and Checker, Bricklin and DeLorean...

1955 Packard Patrician
...Studebaker-Packard.

The Packard above, from the dying years of the company, features a "Twin-Ultramatic" transmission, an improvement on the existing Ultramatic, designed by a young Packard engineer who had been lured away from his job at Chrysler by a $14,000-a-year salary offer. The engineer's name: John DeLorean.

Talk about a different era. You can tell the image the manufacturer wished to project with a vehicle name like "Patrician". Bunches of chrome gingerbread and a three-tone paint job. It even says "The Patrician" in script on the fenders behind the front wheel wells. If they still made 'em, they'd probably rate their own #OCCUPY movement. #OCCUPY_DOCTOR_SMITHS_CAR!

(Incidentally, the Wikipedia category "Defunct motor vehicle manufacturers of the United States" contains six hundred and eighty-eight entries.)

14 comments:

Keads said...

+1 for the wide whitewalls and the F-100 in the background is just icing on the cake.

Wayne said...

Noticed the Wiki page doesn't list the American Bantam Car co.

CGHill said...

If I remember correctly, Ultradrive was the only automatic developed in-house by any of the independent automakers; everyone else either hooked up with an existing maker of gearboxes or swallowed their pride and bought GM Hydra-Matic.

rickn8or said...

Bruce McCall, in a National Lampoon article referred to these as "cars that say 'Get out of my way!'"

I maintain there is still a crying need for such vehicles in America.

Chas Clifton said...

I honestly had not realized that Packard still existed after World War II.

Alien said...

Tam, I must say I'm impressed; SoBro and vicinity seems to be a hotbed of vintage autos, stuff I haven't seen in years, and some I've never seen.

Thanks for posting the pics.

Joe in PNG said...

As a wise man once said, if you want to make a small fortune, take a large fortune and start your own car company.

jim in houston said...

I've been going through the boxed sets of "Crime Story" - a show I missed when it was on the air; my girlfriend at the time was a "Moonlighting" fan - and for '50s - early 60s cars it is pretty mindboggling. Damn good series as well, although the second season is going kinda slow after eating the first box like pretzels.

Tam said...

Alien,

Not all of these are in Broad Ripple. This Packard isn't, and I may have some other shots from various trips.

I just have a compulsion to snap pics of oddities still out and rolling around. :)

Ed said...

The defunct auto company list does not have American Bantam but does have the predecessor, American Austin Car Company:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Austin_Car_Company

Roy in Nipomo said...

My grandparents owned a funeral home and had a '52 Packard as the "family car" (vehicle for transporting the bereaved). They had to have the seats reupholstered twice in its first 35k miles (it also had two small jumper seats in the back which made it an 8 passenger car - though rarely operated at that capacity).

Anonymous said...

So how much were they asking for it?

Anonymous said...

I miss Plymouth!

I saw a Maxwell at a Burbank gas station around 1992. Elegant cars! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maxwell_automobile

Ulises from CA

Bruce Badger said...

My family had a '53 and '55 Packard when I was in high school (mid '60s). Obviously, Dad was a fan. Unfortunately, traded them both right before I got my license. Beautiful fit and finish. Plenty of power. And ride like a cloud. Hated to see them go under.