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Board index » All Posts (Mahoning63)




Re: State of the PackardInfo Union
#1
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Mahoning63
BigKev, I echo the feelings that everyone has expressed. Thank you so much for everything that you have done and continue to do at PackardInfo. Happy Easter, stay strong and savor every day. Life is indeed precious.

Paul

Posted on: 4/17 18:50
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Re: 1954 Packard Patrician Sportster
#2
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Mahoning63
"...willingness of management to make it happen."

Steve is so right on this. Victory in the auto industry requires not just deep knowledge, which most folks in the industry have, and creativity, which some have, it also requires a daring and adventurous attitude. We see the lack of both today as OEMs dive headlong into electric vehicles but have taken the safe route of putting the tech in vehicles that are familiar to them: sedans, SUVs and pickups. The reality is that EV tech belongs mostly in small devices that do big things for the user, not big devices that do little more than before but cost a lot more.

When I joined the industry 20 years ago at Ford, the Premier Automotive Group (PAG) had a half dozen other brands including Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo. We watched Lincoln try and fail to approve products that would have remade the brand, one of which was quite innovative, and there was always an excuse. By 2003, Lincoln was staring at a 5 year product drought and the rest of PAG withered and was eventually dismantled.

Part of the problem was that all the brands wanted to become full-line producers, which even a company as big as Ford could not afford. In the auto industry it is important to shoot only a few arrows rather than the whole quiver, and make sure that each hits or lands close to the bulls-eye. Unfortunately for PAG, the idea of the brands working together to limit each brand’s all-new products to the vital few best suited to their particular strengths, was something that the PAG family could never accept.

And so we get back to Packard. On one hand they had Nance seeking industry domination. On the other, they couldn’t identify even one product between 1954-56 that would move the needle in any meaningful and lasting way. Except for T-L, GM constantly beat them to the punch and with whole vehicles rather than features. Lincoln and Imperial made moves too.

Posted on: 2021/10/27 10:44
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Re: 1954 Packard Patrician Sportster
#3
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Mahoning63
Someone did a wonderful job adapting '54 Caribbean trim to a '52 Convertible. I tweaked the image only to remove the short front spear and rear speedline, and cover the paint lines on the side and below the taillights. This is what I envision the suggested '54 Clippers looking like. Paint was an inexpensive way to make an older design look newer and I think Packard for 1954 needed to strengthen it's Seniors to the exclusion of almost everything else. The new two-tone Clippers would have sold because of Nash's low-cost A/C and if ready, T-L.

Attach file:



jpg  1952 Packard Convertible Custom with mods.jpg (88.32 KB)
2060_617405b2534a3.jpg 948X563 px

Posted on: 2021/10/23 7:58
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Re: 1954 Packard Patrician Sportster
#4
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Mahoning63
It would be great to have the narrow B-pillar on the 149 car but in the up position the rear door windows wouldn't budge due to their rectangular shape.

Re: '54 Senior roof... are you talking about Cavalier/Patrician or the Caribbean 127 4-door work-up?

Posted on: 2021/10/23 7:35
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Re: 1954 Packard Patrician Sportster
#5
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Mahoning63
The big kahunas, the former of Clipper's sturdy full window frame design, the latter a year before Cadillac's somewhat similar one-off for Ike.

Attach file:



jpg  1954 Packard 149 8-Passenger Sedan.jpg (85.21 KB)
2060_617401e839834.jpg 681X543 px

jpg  1954 Packard Caribbean 149.jpg (59.19 KB)
2060_6174020dc42e8.jpg 951X446 px

Posted on: 2021/10/22 20:40
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Re: 1954 Packard Patrician Sportster
#6
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Mahoning63
Points well taken. I looked for an image of Mayfair's rear quarter window assembly, couldn't find anything. Would be interesting to see.

OK, let's move on to your 127 4-door suggestion and meld in thoughts on how Packard could have breathed new life into the Seniors. If they had followed up on the '53 Caribbean by dropping Ionia and productionizing a full series of four inch longer rear overhang cars, with decklid moved back to get the extra luggage space, and called the new series Caribbean, the Seniors would have been rejuvenated and Packard finally would have had a car that competed with 60 Special. A 122 hardtop coupe and convertible with extended rear overhangs would have rounded out the field, the rear fenders derived from the 4-door. A few 149 pillared hardtop cars could have been run out by Henney, with a formal leather roof added by Derham.

The Patrician name would have been retired and its roof given to Clipper for its own 127 Super Touring Sedan, joining the 122 Club Sedan and Touring Sedan and a Henney-built 149 8-Passenger Sedan and Limousine.

Attach file:



jpg  1954 Packard Caribbean 127 4 ROH.jpg (59.45 KB)
2060_617401bb2dcb8.jpg 951X446 px

jpg  1954 Packard 127 Clipper Super Touring Sedan.jpg (86.41 KB)
2060_617401c721599.jpg 681X543 px

Posted on: 2021/10/22 20:07
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Re: 1954 Packard Patrician Sportster
#7
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Mahoning63
Here's the glass sweep and package for Mayfair articulation and side action. Very tight. Second approach is perhaps similar to '55 Olds/Buick 4-door hardtops. Packard would have needed to find its way to the same sealing/weatherstrip design that GM did.

Skirts/no skirts is like whitewalls/blackwalls... always a hot topic! The '53 Caribbean, because its fenders were designed for skirts, had a lot of lateral overhang, which a wider rear track would have reduced.

I've always felt that '54 was when Packard as a stand-alone player needed to make its stand. The cars needed to sell well, make money and stay viable through '55 with only the V8 added, and 1956 needed to be all-new. Despite talk of going after Cadillac, a lot of the '54 appearance investment went to Clipper's rear fenders and taillights and rather less went to the Seniors. Had Packard focused on the Seniors and used the '54 Caribbean's two-tone paint and a few other tricks to freshen Clipper, who knows...

Other levers for '54 were Nash's low-cost underhood A/C and Torsion-Level. Allison had been working with Packard on T-L since 1951 and had running prototypes in 1953. More prototype refinement came during 1954 but perhaps the feature could have been pulled forward a year if Ferry and then Nance had gone after it.

Attach file:



jpg  Glass sweep and package.jpg (11.53 KB)
2060_6172f782c1204.jpg 386X180 px

Posted on: 2021/10/22 12:39
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Re: 1954 Packard Patrician Sportster
#8
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Mahoning63
The brochure caption for Pacific would have described this car nicely.

Attach file:



jpg  1954 Packard Pacific 122 4D Pillared HT brochure copy.jpg (63.87 KB)
2060_61718c1614a1c.jpg 892X531 px

Posted on: 2021/10/21 7:14
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Re: 1954 Packard Patrician Sportster
#9
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Mahoning63
Don, glad you like the car. The 127 version would have needed a new roof and wide B-pillars so that the rear windows could drop straight down. The car I have floated has rear windows that would have rotated down like the 2-door hardtop, and clearance within the door's inner envelope would have been very tight, might not have worked at all.

I think Howard was describing how the Pacific and Convertible physically came together rather than suggesting that they weren't Seniors. Packard advertised them as Seniors and their pricing was similar to Patrician. They had Cavalier rather than Patrician side trim because they still had the old Clipper's rounded fender bulge. And they didn't sell well.

An alternative Pacific strategy would have made the 2-door hardtop and convertible Clipper Panamas only, with sore thumb fenders, and instead launched a 4-door Pacific pillared hardtop that looked like a sporty version of Patrician and gone after a younger up-and-coming market with intent of getting conquest sales.

Paul

Posted on: 2021/10/20 12:48
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1954 Packard Patrician Sportster
#10
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Mahoning63
Or perhaps simply Pacific. Whatever the name, a 122 wheelbase 4-door pillared hardtop might have helped soften a tough year for Packard.

Attach file:



jpg  1954 Packard Patrician Sportster 122 4D Pillared Hardtop.jpg (59.37 KB)
2060_6170dcef8582c.jpg 951X446 px

Posted on: 2021/10/20 8:56
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