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1951 Packard  Patrician 400 Saloon

 
 
 
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Registration SSV131
Chassis Number 256222218
Engine Number 327AT
Odometer reading 70,441 miles
Estimate £20,000 - £24,000

Introduced in 1951, the Patrician was among the last new Packard models to emerge before the company's ill-fated merger with Studebaker almost four years later. Positioned as the luxury maker's flagship saloon, its sturdy box-section chassis was equipped with independent coil-sprung front suspension, a 'live' rear axle and hydraulic drum brakes. Complete with more chromework and trimmed to a higher standard than its humbler siblings, the Patrician also enjoyed a performance advantage. After WWII, the market began to change; frequent re-engineering and annual styling facelifts became the norm as buyers became ever more fashion conscious. And while the USA's 'Big Three' motor manufacturing corporations - Ford, General Motors and Chrysler - could afford frequent re-tooling, independent Packard simply did not have the necessary resources. Unable to satisfy the public's insatiable appetite for new designs, Packard lost ground to its chief rival, Cadillac, and by 1951 had slumped to 16th in the motor manufacturing league table. Nevertheless, there was an all-new line-up for 1951, albeit one that still lacked a modern overhead-valve V-8 engine.

This Packard Patrician is a righthand drive example and one that presents in excellent order throughout having been restored over a number of years. The eight-cylinder 'Thunderbird' engine sounded delightful when started and ran extremely smooth and quietly; we are advised the automatic transmission operates as it should. The two-tone blue and grey paintwork is in very good order and the 'art-deco' interior, offering ample legroom, is exceptional. With bold chrome-work and cathedral-type rear lights, the styling and size of this imposing Packard really has to be viewed to be fully appreciated. Supplied with a V5C registration document and a current MoT test certificate, this is a rare opportunity to purchase such a well sorted example.