- Final year for the Eight prior to the introduction of the mid-priced One Twenty
- Intriguing history documented by owner correspondence
- Restored in the mid-1990s
- Classic Car Club of America (CCCA) Full Classic
Introduced at the height of the Great Depression in August 1933, Packard’s Eleventh Series, with its subtly raked windscreen and V-shaped radiator grille and low stance, further cemented Packard’s reputation for making some of the most beautiful automobiles of the Classic Era. Updates for the 1934 model year included the addition of an oil-temperature regulator and a larger, heavy-duty generator to allow for an optional vacuum-tube radio. The gas-tank filler was relocated to the left rear taillight assembly, while new, slotted bumpers and vent wings distinguish the 1934 model from its predecessor.
The Packard Eight had three model numbers for 1934: the 1100, with a 129.5-inch wheelbase, the 1101 at 136.25 inches, and the 1102 at 141.25 inches. All Eights shared the same 120-horsepower, 319-cubic-inch straight-eight engine, three-speed synchronized manual transmission, and vacuum-assisted brakes. At a cost of $2,350 to $3,200, depending on the coachwork, these models were aimed at owners who wanted the luxury and refinement of a Packard in a more driver-friendly package.
The five-passenger sedan offered here was delivered new to Washington, DC on 10 July 1934. It was acquired in the 1960s by a Mr. Nonamaker of Pennsylvania, who owned it until 1975, when ownership passed to Mr. Sevigny of Prospect, Connecticut. For reasons unknown, he partially disassembled the car, storing parts throughout his house and parking the car in a basement garage. Upon his passing in 1989, Mr. Sevingy’s widow had difficulty selling the disassembled vehicle. One prospective buyer wanted to hot-rod it, while another sought it for parts. She refused them both and in 1994 finally convinced Stuart Somers, also of Prospect, Connecticut, to acquire it—some assembly required!
Parts were reportedly found scattered from attic to basement, under the bed, in dresser drawers, and bathroom cabinets. Mr. Somers commissioned a partial restoration by Vintage Motorcars in Derby, Connecticut, instructing them to keep as much of the original paint as possible. He then sold it to David Hall of Fairport, New York in 1998, who drove it some 300 miles the following year to a Packard centennial anniversary event in Warren, Ohio. Mr. Hall kept it until 2004, when it was purchased by a dealership and subsequently sold to a buyer in Young Harris, Georgia, who then sold it to the current owner in 2015.
Work performed under current ownership included installing new valves and fuel lines, rebuilding the carburetor and choke, adding an electric fuel pump, replacing some of the glass, and installing hinge-mounted mirrors. Ownership logs indicate the car has been driven less than 10,000 miles since its restoration in the mid-1990s.
Well-preserved with a fascinating history and accompanied by service invoices for work commissioned under current ownership, this 1934 Eight represents the final year of the model before it became the mid-priced One Twenty and is sure to make an excellent conversation piece anywhere it goes.