Lot Number

1933 Packard Twelve Individual Custom Sport Phaeton in the style of LeBaron

Sold For $583,000

Inclusive of applicable buyer's fee.

RM | Auctions - MOTOR CITY 2015

Chassis No.
Engine No.
  • Offered from a prominent private collection
  • Detailed recreation coachwork by Fran Roxas
  • One of the most extraordinarily beautiful of all Packards
  • Best in Class award winner at Pebble Beach

Series 1006. 160 bhp, 445 cu. in. side-valve V-12 engine with Stromberg two-barrel downdraft carburetor, three-speed synchromesh manual transmission, front suspension via semi-elliptical leaf springs and beam axle, rear suspension via semi-elliptical leaf springs and live axle, and four-wheel vacuum-assisted drum brakes. Wheelbase: 147 in.

One of the most spectacular Packards of the Classic Era was the Individual Custom Sport Phaeton, offered solely on the Eleventh Series Twelve chassis on a very limited basis. These cars featured striking streamlined styling with fully skirted fenders, rear fender “spats,” streamlined running boards, and a fabric top disappearing into a fastback roofline, designed along suggestions from Packard styling director Edward Macauley. Actual construction was carried out by the custom shop of LeBaron in Detroit.

Writing of the design in her book, Packard: The Pride, J.M. Fenster commented that “the Sport Phaeton is a peak in the transition from the erect architecture of earlier cars to the rather bulbous aerodynamics to come.” In other words, it was the high water mark of Packard body design in this era.

It is believed that five original examples of the 1108 Twelve Individual Custom Sport Phaeton were built by LeBaron. One of these was eventually shipped to Europe, where it was destroyed during World War II. The remaining four cars survive, and all are part of long-term private or museum collections from which they are unlikely to emerge soon.

Renowned restorer Fran Roxas, famous for his numerous Pebble Beach and CCCA award-winners, took it upon himself to recreate several Sport Phaetons in the 1980s. With Roxas’s typical attention to detail, these cars were painstakingly fabricated to the same standards of craftsmanship as in 1934 on original 12-cylinder Packard chassis. They provide a delightful and most affordable alternative to the “real thing,” with the same driving quality and spectacular styling.

The car shown here is believed to be the fourth built by Mr. Roxas and uses as its basis a 1933 1006 Twelve chassis and engine, which, given the very near proximity of their numbers, were likely mated together when new. This drivetrain is virtually identical to that of the 1934 1108, and Mr. Roxas used correct 1108 styling cues to depict accurately the original Sport Phaeton’s design. The body was finished in deep mink silver, with a color-coordinated leather interior. Conical wheel covers and wide whitewall tires complete the svelte and dignified appearance.

Mr. Roxas maintained this Packard as his personal car until selling it to its present owner, a well-known collector of American Classics, in late 2000. It has been well maintained in the collection ever since. In 2002, it even appeared in the European and American New Coachwork class at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, performing beautifully on the Tour d’Elegance and achieving Best in Class. It continues to show nearly as well today, with all fits and finishes being attractive and well kept.

The LeBaron-bodied Individual Custom Packard Twelves are considered superlative examples of the marque and are highly sought after by enthusiasts. For those who desire the same experience at a very attractive price point, this car, identical to an original in its every detail, would be a splendid choice.

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