There were Packards, and then there were Darrin Packards. Howard 'Dutch' Darrin had been doing custom coachwork on Packards since the early 1920's, but his real 'star' came when he set up shop in Hollywood, customizing Packard coupes into dazzling Convertible Victorias with cut-down doors, a low hood line, and a padded dash. A total of 14 were built in Hollywood through 1939, two on the Super Eight chassis, and the rest on the One-Twenty chassis.
Darrin presented his masterpiece to Packard dealers, who then lobbied the company to offer these stunning cars as 'catalogue customs' which it did through 1942. Darrin built the cars in Connersville, Indiana in 1940, and Packard moved production to Hess & Eisenhardt, in Cincinnati, in 1941 and 1942. About 150 Darrins were built, in all, mostly as Convertible Victorias. A few Sedans and Convertible Sedans were built. This example is one of only three Convertible Sedans built in 1940.Also photographed at :
Howard 'Dutch' Darrin designed elegant and extravagant open body styles, such as this Convertible Sedan. It was constructed atop of a custom eight chassis with a wheelbase 11-inches longer than standard. There were only a dozen of these Packard's built with only eight in existence. This car has been awarded a CCCA National First Award in 1995.
In 2010, this Convertible Sedan was offered for sale at the Gooding & Company Auction held in Scottsdale, Arizona. It was estimated to sell for $150,000 - $200,000. As bidding came to a close, the lot was sold for the sum of $253,000, inclusive of buyer's premium.
Designer Howard 'Dutch' Darrin created this particular car by stretching the Custom Eight chassis wheelbase by 11 inches. Only a dozen of these cars were built and only eight still exist. It was sold new in Chicago for $6,300. It was discovered in a California peanut farm in 1967 and underwent a 27 year restoration.