One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Auction

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Thread: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Auction

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    One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Auction

    One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block At 2014 RM Motor City Auction
    Packard Prototype wows crowds at St. Johns with its glimpse of what a modern Packard would've looked like, Nabs 130k hammer price.
    www.gminsidenews.com
    July 26, 2014
    By: Carl Malek







    Hello everyone, with the last weekend of July now upon us, it is once again time for our annual coverage of the Concours d'Elegance of America located on the grounds of the Inn of St. Johns in beautiful Plymouth Michigan as well as the 2014 RM Motor City Auto Auction which took place earlier today. One of the iconic pre-war brands that has always stood out at these events is offerings from Packard Motors. Before the brand's slow decline and ultimately its outright collapse in the mid 1950's, Packard was once synonymous with the elite power players of the 19th century with much of it being thanks in part to their beautiful styling, hand-built appearance, as well as being an innovator in the early days of motoring. That said, what would've happened if a Packard was made to cater to modern luxury car buyers, what would it have looked like? and how would it stand out in a now crowded international field of competitors? An ambitious entrepreneur decided to find out in the late 1990's, and went to work investing $1.5 million dollars in his ambitious goal of creating this one of a kind prototype, which certainly did a good job wowing the crowds in attendance with its unique take on Packard styling cues.


    The idea that eventually spawned this vehicle first began as a conversation topic among a group of friends while out on lunch in 1991. Amid this small group of friends on that faithful day was a man named Robert Gullickson, an engineer and entrepreneur who wanted to create a reborn Packard model that embodied the spirit and legacy of the Packard name while also modernizing it for a new generation of luxury car buyers at the same time. Gullickson succeeded in securing all rights to the Packard brand shortly after with concept development beginning in the fall of 1993. However it was in 1994 when the serious engineering and styling aspects of the car really began to take shape thanks to the efforts of Gullickson as well as fellow engineer Lawrence Johnson with its formal debut taking place in 1998 in Arizona during the 25th anniversary celebrations of the Packard brand in Arizona.




    Unlike the pre-war Packards that inspired its creation, this prototype has a strong connection with General Motors which is most prevalent in the cars overall construction. The interior uses various bits from production GM models of the time, but features such as real walnut wood trim, high quality leather surfaces, and dual zone climate control add some upscale ambiance to the overall presentation. The exterior as well as the underlying sub structure uses all aluminum components to shed weight (similar to modern Jaguar models) and allows the prototype to weigh in at 3,750 lbs. The styling reflects its Packard influence especially in the front, and while its creator claims that the design incorporates neither European nor American influences (The Gullicksons insist that its an expression of Pure Packard styling) the rear fascia does bear a resemblance to the mid 90's iteration of the Jaguar XJ as well as older Bentleys. Performance came from a specially built 525 cubic inch all aluminum Falconer Racing V12 which was good for a solid 573 horsepower and allowed the all-wheel drive equipped prototype to make the sprint to 60 mph in a brisk 4.8 seconds. As is the case with the interior, GM components are also used most notably the GM 4L80E four speed automatic as well as the Delco sourced port fuel injection system and powertrain control modules.


    Overall, while it certainly had no chance in matching the high dollar figures regularly achieved by its iconic pre-war predecessors. The $130,000 hammer price (not including the 10 percent buyers premium) it did achieve is still a commendable amount for this unique car and the buyer earned a distinctive conversation piece which should continue to draw eyes wherever it goes for years to come. Stay tuned to this thread for more highlights from the 2014 RM Motor City Auction as well as tommorows coverage of the main Concour event (which will be in a seperate thread).




    Last edited by GMfan1111; 07-26-2014 at 11:07 PM.
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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    They only made one of these? Thank Gawd. The exterior is semi-horrifying, the interior even moreso. The cheapest switchgear in the history of General Motors. The interior looks like GM's idea of a loaded Oldsmobile in the early 1980's. A book of bus tickets has more allure than this monstrosity.

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    I like it but the Front and Back do NOT belong on the same car and the KIT inside is of KIT car quality
    the front looks IMHO like something from those 40's "Futurama" shows or a show car from 1950 the rear looks like a Jag XJ and a lincoln from the 80's got it on then went for "BUTT implant surgery"

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    No direct lineage to the original Packard line ... truly ugly exterior ... an interior to hide from ... I can't see how this even fetched $130k, but I'm pleased that there's only one.

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    It actually got a bid -that surprises me!

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    I remember seeing this car in person back around 1999-2000. While I'll never say it's a beauty, it does look better in person than it does in photos. The interior is like many "boutique" cars of the 80's & 90's: Cheap GM switches, mixed with wood and somewhat decent seats. I never did hear it run or see it drive.

    Though there's no real lineage to Packard, I can see how a Packard lover would want to have this unique model. I can also see how fans of 90's era Bentley's & Rolls would like to own this. Being a veteran of selling many classics and muscle cars at auction, the selling price of this car doesn't surprise me. $130k may seem steep for most, but I am not surprised at all that this car went for six digits. It's a very unique piece with a legendary name attached to it.

    EDIT: Oh, and Packard was a power player in the 20th century, not the 19th...
    Last edited by Quixote88; 07-27-2014 at 11:12 AM.

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    Talk about cartoonish!

    Wouldn't it be nice if somebody serious revived a 1930s American luxury brand that taught Cadillac and Lincoln on how to be a proper American luxury brand?

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    Looks like a kit car. Funny, I was thinking how the interior looked like a GM with wood slapped on it, then I keep reading and sure enough it was a GM dash with wood slapped on it!

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    Wow! What a ridiculous looking piece of garbage. It is hideous. What an insult to Packard.

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    Quote Originally Posted by nruggiero View Post
    Talk about cartoonish!

    Wouldn't it be nice if somebody serious revived a 1930s American luxury brand that taught Cadillac and Lincoln on how to be a proper American luxury brand?

    One does wonder from time to time.

    It will perhaps.......... take an 'Auto Union' to do that..... and 'we' don't have an Auto Union .... yet.


    And really, just what exactly is the real Cadillac and Lincoln track record ...... over all time ?????
    Last edited by AMERICA 123; 07-27-2014 at 11:16 PM.
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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    Makes the '58 Packard Hawk look pretty... But $130k for a 1.5Million Dollar prototype with a custom built 12 cylinder with 573 hp doesn't seem crazy to me. I'm sure the buyer has plenty more cash...
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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    Swoopy retro was all the rage in the 90s. Back then, this looked pretty sharp compared to the soulless jelly beans rolling off production lines. I remember being impressed with it during my late teens.

    It hasn't aged well but a collector of oddball cars will enjoy it.
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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    This design or shape bares more than a passing resemblance to the early 1990's to late 1990's Pontiac Bonneville... the Bonneville looks better. I kinda like this car... for the sake of its "non-European" styling. Have a strange feeling that we havent seen the last of modern- day Packards..

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    Looks like a Jag S-Type or Kia Amanti

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    Re: One Of A Kind Packard Twelve Prototype Crosses The Block at 2014 Motor City Aucti

    Quote Originally Posted by ByTheLake View Post
    No direct lineage to the original Packard line ... truly ugly exterior ... an interior to hide from ... I can't see how this even fetched $130k, but I'm pleased that there's only one.
    The guy effectively bought Packard.....via the rights to the name... so technically, there is a lineage (beyond the grille).

    That said, the car looks absolutely horrid. The chassis and drivetrain are intriguing, but the styling (the interiors let alone the outside) exactly how nruggiero put it...cartoonish....without any attempt whatsoever made towards actually making the thing look attractive. There could have been a far better job done with the sheetmetal and interior design which would have likely given them a chance to actually raise money, let alone sell an actual car.

    There's been a lot of other design ideas of Packard over the years, and they all seem to involve putting a 30s style Packard grille on modern sheetmetal (or this monstrosity) and the result winds up being garish, tacky, or worse. That version of the traditional Packard grille doesn't work anymore than a 30's era Cadillac, Mercedes, or Lincoln grille. Packards of the 1950s evolved to a full width grille where a wider version the "arch" was incorporated into the curvature of the hood. Good attractive body design along with this type of grille will IMHO look both modern and less tacky and might actually help get investors to chip in to restart Packard..... afterall, just 5 years ago, Tesla was essentially nothing more than a company that converted tiny Lotus sports cars into battery powered vehicles. Now they're about to launch their own independently designed and manufactured vehicle.

    Couple bits of history. First, Packard has a number of designs done for their upcoming cars when they bought (not the other way around) Studebaker. In a DaimlerChrysler like story, the smaller of the 2 wound up taking over the larger and using it's cash stockpile for it's own goods. Packards became rebadged Studebakers, and these designs (which resembled what eventually resembled a mixture of what later became Edsel and Pontiac design) were shelved.






    Another was based on a heavily diversified Studebaker already being the sole importer of Mercedes Benz. A plan was set up and arrangements made to also import the Facel Vega Excellence from France with a Packard grille and under the Packard name. DaimlerBenz threatened to terminate their exclusive agreement with Studebaker if they went through with it, and the idea was shelved at almost literally the last moment (US regulations were far more lax regarding imports back then, so the effort would be barely more than stamping a different grille to bolt in.




    In another instance, Studebaker, for a time after the introduction of the Lark, seemed as if they were going to bounce back from the brink., The start of the 1960s was looking bright for the company, and there were some design ideas done for a Packard created off of modified Studebaker platforms. The looks were an updated version of the "Predictor" concept of 1956.



    This last picture was I believe from an effort by a group of investors to bring back Packard in the 1960s much the same way Avanti was brought back, as a small company making handmade vehicles on established chassis from a major car manufacturer.

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