For Packard’s Sixth Series of 1928, the model 443 sat at the top of the range. The eight-cylinder model sat on a grand 143 inch wheelbase and was powered by a 109 horsepower, 383 cubic inch straight eight. The Packard Eight was lauded for its exceptional smoothness and drivability, and remains today one of the finest driver’s cars of the era. The grand, elegant Packard 443 was ideally suited to the masterful touch of Walter M. Murphy.
Walter M. Murphy Coachbuilders of Pasadena, California are perhaps best known for bodying a large number of famous Duesenberg model J, SJ and SSJ cars. But beyond Duesenberg, their famously beautiful bodies have graced the best chassis in the world from Cadillac, Bugatti, Rolls-Royce, Minerva and many others. Murphy bodies are known for their grace, elegance and outstanding quality. Given their reputation, Murphy Coachbuilders was a natural choice for Packard owners who could afford to order a custom body. Unusually for a coachbuilder, Murphy would also modify existing bodies so owners could experience their signature flair at a more approachable cost of entry.
Our featured Packard 443 beautiful dual-cowl phaeton is once such car that was modified in period by Murphy. It originally left the Packard works with a factory “catalog” phaeton body and was soon delivered to Murphy for modifications to the dual-cowl specification is wears today. This is a truly stunning motorcar in every respect, and records show it was displayed at the Los Angeles Auto Show following the revisions. Since its restoration some time ago, it remains in outstanding order with excellent quality finishing. The deep burgundy body is accented with black fenders and a sensational polished alloy hood. Paint and bodywork as excellent, as one would expect from such a high quality restoration. Likewise, the brightwork is gorgeous with deep, clear reflections and no signs of pitting or corrosion. Optional wire wheels have been finished with matching burgundy rims, polished stainless spokes and fresh blackwall tires while twin windscreens feature windwings and fold down flat for the ultimate period sporting look. Each pivot on the ‘screens are marked with the official Walter M. Murphy, Pasadena, California logo. The proud Packard radiator wears a polished alloy stone guard, as well as an airplane motif Packard Moto-Meter. Magnificent and rare Zeiss Cowl lamps feature integrated rear-view mirrors. The running boards feature unusual chrome “flow through” boot scrapers and the side mount spares wear polished covers. All of these details add up to create a visually stunning motorcar.
Equally beautiful is the dark red leather interior, accented by a tan cloth convertible top. The driver’s compartment features period correct linoleum floors, engine turned dash with chrome instrument surrounds and a magnificent wood rimmed wheel with polished spokes. Even the shift knob is a wonderful visual piece, made of black and red marble. Rear passengers get leather seats and maroon carpets as well as ash trays built into the back of the front seats. The interior presents in excellent condition, showing this car has seen light and careful use since restored.
Detailing is excellent on the eight-cylinder engine, which is finished in correct Packard green with lovely fittings and black painted accessories. Likewise, the chassis is fully restored and in very tidy condition with nice detailing such as leather spring gaiters and correct finishes.
This striking and imposing motorcar is perfectly suited for show or touring. The rarity, quality and style of the highly desirable Murphy Coachbuilder detailing make it welcome at most concours events, and thanks to the legendary Packard mechanicals, it is likewise thoroughly usable and enjoyable to drive.
If you wish to sell classic cars from your collection but don't want to deal with the hassle, contact us today and learn more about our classic car consignment program. We're here to help.