In the late 1920s, Packard was riding high on a wave of record sales and profits. With little indication of the economic trouble to come for the luxury car market as a whole, the company forged ahead with their latest model, the Seventh Series, introduced in August 1929, just a few months shy of the stock market crash. The range opened with the 726 and 733 Standard Eight, followed by the uncharacteristically sporty 734 Speedster, culminating in the 740 Custom Eight, and finally the flagship 745 Deluxe Eight. Ray Dietrich, head of Packard’s in-house styling department, modified the design language he created for the 6th series, making it lower and more graceful while shedding any ties with the 1920s once and for all. Packard now employed the same standard bodies across the range, while the hood length made up the difference in wheelbase between the models. That gave the grand 145.5-inch wheelbase Deluxe Eight a particularly striking and powerful appearance.
Of the vast array of open and closed body styles offered by Packard and other coachbuilders on the 745 Deluxe Eight chassis, few are as iconic as the factory’s own Dual Cowl Sport Phaeton. Styled and built at Packard’s in-house body shop, it exemplified the glamor and grandeur of the early 1930s and remained one of the most collectible classic-era American automobiles. This superbly restored 1930 745 Dual Cowl Sport Phaeton is a CCCA Senior Premier Award winner (number 1402), beautifully presented in two-tone red and fastidiously detailed to concours quality standards. Despite the older restoration, it is in stunningly beautiful condition, with exceptional paint, brightwork, and detailing. This car’s earliest history is unknown; however, the story picks up in the late 1960s when the McGowan brothers of Connecticut purchased it from the second owner. They, in turn, sold it as a complete, original car to the renowned collector Mr. William Lassiter in the 1980s. Mr. Lassiter then commissioned Rob Stewart of Charlottesville, Virginia, to perform a full restoration completed in the late 80s. It went on to earn accolades with the CCCA and AACA before leaving the Lassiter collection in the late 1990s.
As offered, it is in remarkably fine condition, thanks to expert care and light freshening in the hands of its most recent owner. The body is beautifully finished with superb panel fit and outfitted with a host of period accessories, including a radiator stone guard, dual steerable Pilot Ray driving lamps, Adonis mascot, polished side-mount covers, correct wood-trimmed luggage rack, chrome wire wheels, and more. The cabin features beautifully trimmed dark red leather with matching carpet. Detailing of the dash, instruments, controls, and decorative trim is superb. Likewise, the tan canvas top is in excellent condition, detailed with maroon piping and including a complete set of matching side curtains.
Packard’s legendary 120-horsepower L-head inline-eight is very well-presented in the engine bay, and the level of detail belies the age of the restoration. It is correctly painted in Packard green with a silver crankcase and black porcelain enamel accessories, which are finely finished. Period correct clamps, wiring, and hardware are in place, and it is updated with an oil filter for additional protection when touring. These powerful and robust engines are among the finest of their time, paired with the meticulously engineered 745 chassis, making for an unforgettable driving experience.
Thanks to years of expert care in the hands of experienced collectors, this Packard remains as breathtaking as ever. With its superb restoration and eminently desirable dual cowl phaeton coachwork, it would undoubtedly make an impact on the concours lawn, yet is sure to provide endless pleasure on CCCA CARavan tours or similar driving events.
Offers welcome and trades considered