Re: Was the 1957-1958 Packard manufactured ONLY for marketing purposes?

Posted by Fyreline on 2014/5/24 19:47:16
As stated, the book "Champion of the Lark: Harold Churchill and the Presidency of Studebaker-Packard, 1956-1961" by Robert R. Ebert pretty well covers this topic . . . And is a very interesting book in its own right. I downloaded the e-book from Amazon and enjoyed it very much. Ebert also provides some insight into the decision to produce the 1957-1958 "Packardbakers" being proven correct (well, the 1957 anyway) based on a pure business evaluation. That is, S-P made more money with the Packard cars those years than it would have without them. The cost to produce the Packard cars those years was relatively low, and the per-car profit was the highest of any S-P product. The 1957 Packards also helped to lower the break-even point that year . . . And even though S-P still failed to meet that point, the financial picture would have been even more dismal without them.

Yes, there were grumblings from the Packard Dealers. No, they didn't like the 1957 Packard when it was unveiled to them. They asked for (and got) a station wagon version of the sedan, which was the only model initially planned. They also asked for a Packard version of the Hawk to sell, which they got in 1958. That's right, they asked for it. There was a fund set aside for settling litigation with disgruntled dealers - a paltry (even in 1957) $250,000 - and the sum of all claims never exceeded that amount. Many little insights like this appear throughout the book. For Studebaker and Packard aficionados alike, it's worth a read.

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