1939 Packard Touring Sedan
This big black 1939 Packard Touring Sedan was easily the most imposing thing at last Saturday's Lincoln Highway Car Show. It's in unrestored original condition, mechanically sound and solid, but showing its age a bit in things like worn rubber on the running boards and little dings and cracks in the paint. On the other hand, I hope I look this good when I'm 72.
In 1939, Packard was every bit as prestigious as Cadillac, if not more so. This car isn't a purpose-built limousine, but nevertheless it's got more legroom in the rear seat than in the front. Packard buyers tended to be the sort of people who could afford a driver to go with the car, and those who sprang for one would have had ample room there in the back.
Under the side-opening hood, the 130 HP flathead straight eight has a lot of surface rust, but still runs as buttery smooth as the day it rolled off the end of the assembly line at Packard's East Grand Boulevard plant in Detroit.
Packard had a formidable reputation for its engineering and build quality which was richly deserved. During World War II, Packard built the V-12 Merlin aircraft engine under license from Rolls Royce, and the Rolls Royce guys--who knew a thing or three about engineering and build quality--were impressed by how much improved the Packard version was.
The '39 is fully-equipped, with a clock on the passenger side and a six-tube AM radio so you could listen to Kate Smith and Glenn Miller during the trip.
--Cookie the Dog's Owner