Gables Service Station
30 June 2005
1923 PACKARD 'SINGLE-SIX' 27.3HP TWO SEATER
Registration No. Formerley New Zealand Registered
Car No. U81397AR
Engine No. Tba
Red with black mudguards and black upholstery
Engine: six cylinder monobloc, side-valve, 3 3/8 x 5 ins. bore & stroke, 4,398cc; Gearbox: three speed, central change; Suspension: front and rear, semi-elliptical leaf springs; Brakes: two wheel rear drum. Right hand drive.
Packard was the only one of America's three leading quality manufacturers ('the 3 Ps') to make a significant impression on the British market. The 'Single-Six' joined the V-12-engined 'Twin-Six' in 1921, but with no reduction of the quality that was to remain Packard's hallmark until the end.
The body is the standard two-seater supplied by the Packard factory, and is of a quality to match that of the chassis. Loop-pattern door handles are a feature, as is the rakish two-panel windscreen, this fitted with 'Nozy Wings' accessory side-deflectors - a practical period fitment. A vacuum-operated windscreen wiper is fitted. Centrally mounted on the large wood-rimmed steering wheel are beautifully-made hand controls for throttle and ignition. The dashboard instruments include the stylish Waltham speedometer, recording 47,015 miles. The original leather trim remains fitted to the door panels; the bench seat has been recovered in Rexine, but long ago: it matches well. Bright metal work - of which there is more than the norm with American cars of this period - is correctly in nickel plate, and the art deco styling of the headlight rims echoes the shape of the radiator: they retain their ornate original diffuser lenses. Another Packard feature is the quick-release radiator filler cap, and a Packard calormeter fitted to the cap records water temperature. The luggage locker at the rear could once have been a 'rumble' or dickey seat. Twin spare rims and tyres are mounted at the rear. Fixed wood artillery wheels are fitted with detachable rims and 5.00 x 24 ins. tyres.
Under the bonnet, the massive engine dominates, and individual brass compression taps are fitted in the cylinder head above each cylinder. The cast iron block is bolted to an aluminium crankcase, which incorporates 7 main bearings. A Packard updraught carburettor, and Packard-Delco coil ignition are fitted, and an Autovac draws fuel from the rear-mounted tank.
Presenting as a solid and substantially unaltered car, the imposing and powerful appearance of this roadster surely will be borne out in practice. Its performance will give effortless touring, and right-hand drive is an obvious asset on British roads.
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No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 17.5% will be added to the buyer's premium, which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.
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