By 1930 the 734 Speedster Series was a full line of cars. The specially designed short, narrow, and lower bodies were built in Packard's own new custom body shop located right on the plant site on East Grand Boulevard. These specially built Speedster bodies and the individual customs on the longer chassis were built in this shop; they carry a black and red body plate on the lower right cowl.
The Speedster Series used 745 components in conjunction with its own specially designed bodies. In the engine compartment was a new breed of Packard. Its exhaust manifold was a separate unit mounted at 45-degrees and finned. It had a large vacuum booster and a dual-throat Detroit Lubricator carburetor, along with a special camshaft and valving.
The brake drums were also finned, for cooling, and it had an optional 3.31 or 4.66 gear ratio.
The 734 Speedster was offered as a Boattail, a Phaeton, a Sedan, a Victoria Coupe, and later, as a Roadster. A total of only 150 734 Speedsters, in all body styles, were sold, and the world economy was sinking further into the Great Depression. Packard discontinued the Speedster Series for 1931.
The very first Speedster was a Club Sedan with a custom body executed for Alvan Macauley. It is estimated that there were a total of 39 Speedster Boattails originally built, of which only eleven are known to survive.
This example is body number 442-5 and engine number 194005, and was originally restored by William Dale, in 1867. It was owned for a number of years by the Rick Carroll Collection, in Florida.
Packard made a line of extremely unusual cars - the 734 Speedster was designed to be a factory hot rod, with higher performance, higher top speed, lower weight, and sporting bodies. Production is estimated at only 113 to 118 cars, with only 26 surviving examples in all body styles (Runabout, Phaeton, Victoria, and Sedan). The 384 cubic-inch super eight engine produces 145 horsepower. Cost of the automobile was approximately $5,200.
Packard produced 113 to 118 Speedster Eights with models consisting of boat-tail 2-passenger roadsters, 5-passenger sedans, 4-passenger phaetons, 5-passenger Victoria coupes, and the 2 and 4-passenger roadsters. They were all fitted on 134-inch wheel [Read More...] By Daniel Vaughan | Oct 2016
The Packard 734 was never advertised or promoted by the company. Only a few knew of this option and as a result, only a few were ever created. The cars had high performance characteristics and matching stylish appeal. [Read More...] By Daniel Vaughan | Apr 2007
Packard was the leading luxury marque at the start of the Classic era and in 1930 sold 28,318 cars, priced from $2,375 to $5,350. Packard was one of the oldest car companies in America, with the first Packard built in 1899. The company began life as [Read More...]
Sold for $121,000 at 2007 RM Sothebys. This 1930 Packard 734 Speedster was offered for sale at the 2007 RM Auctions held at Meadow Brook. The car was estimated to fetch between $125,000 - $175,000 and was without a reserve. It spent time in Switzerland during the early 1990s and its eng [Read More...] By Daniel Vaughan | Aug 2007
For 1930, Packard introduced a line of high performance models that used its largest engine, complete with several unique performance modifications, coupled with a short chassis and lightweight coachwork. The result was a car offering lively perform [Read More...]
Packard's 1930-only Speedster series offered five models including this boattail speedster. The platform measured 134.5 inch platform and fitted with special features such as a ribbed exhaust manifold, a dual-throat Detroit Lubricator carburetor that [Read More...]
Sold for $211,750 at 2005 RM Sothebys. Sold for $187,000 at 2011 RM Sothebys. Sold for $506,000 at 2011 RM Sothebys. The Packard 734 was available in five different body styles with total production reaching 113 examples for all body styles. This boattail runabout speedster was delivered new to a Mrs. Sealey from Portland, Oregon. It was acquired by William Harrah [Read More...] By Daniel Vaughan | Oct 2011
Using what Packard had in current production by modifying the Packard standard Eight chassis and coupling it with a reworked Deluxe Eight engine, the Packard 734 Speedster was born. The custom built bodies were narrower and lower than typical, and wi [Read More...] By Daniel Vaughan | Dec 2011
As near to a sports car to ever bear the Packard name the 7th Series Speedster Runabout was set on a short 134-inch wheelbase and powered by a highly modified 385 cubic-inch straight eight engine allowing the Speedsters to exceed 100 mph. Distinctive [Read More...]
Sold for $975,000 at 2012 Gooding & Company. The Packard 734 Series was the brainchild of Colonel Jesse Vincent, Packard's Vice President of Engineering. Introduced during the midst of an escalating horsepower race, the Packard 734 Speedster was the prototypical factory 'hot rod.' They were an [Read More...] By Daniel Vaughan | Dec 2012
It is believed that just under 120 examples of the Packard 734 were constructed with as many as 26 surviving in modern times. The Packard 734 was constructed by the company to be a high performance vehicle with stylish bodies, low weight, and high top speeds. Inside of these small vehicles (small for the day) was Packard's largest engine, a 384 cubic-inch super eight with Detroit Lubricator 2 barrel updraft carburetors. There was a vacuum driven booster to keep fuel regulated to the engine while the vehicle was traveling at high speeds.
The bodies of these vehicles were much narrower than the other production Packards. This practice aided in the reduction of overall weight and helped the vehicle to achieve a 3.31:1 gear ratio. To help keep the vehicle in the driver's control, finned cast iron drum brakes were used. Standard Packards were un-finned.
The side mounted spare tires were placed in front of the passenger compartment.
Famous coachbuilders were given the opportunity to create custom bodies to suite the clients specific needs and desires. By Daniel Vaughan | Mar 2007
Sold for $165,000 at 2014 RM Sothebys. Packard introduced the 734 Speedster series in January of 1930, a full five months after the public introduction of Packard's Seventh Series models on August 20th of 1929. This series was the work of Colonel Jesse Vincent who had a special speedster [Read More...] By Daniel Vaughan | Jan 2014
Between June 6th and July 9th of 1995, this 1930 Packard Model 734 boat-tail speedster was driven 9,638 miles through all 48 contiguous states. The car is powered by a 385 cubic-inch, straight 8 engine offering 145 horsepower. It has a wheelbase that [Read More...]
This 1930 Packard Speedster Boattail Runabout was once part of the famous Harrah Collection and is one of a very few of this body style known to exist. It is believed that this model was produced in response to the Cadillac Sixteens. [Read More...]
The Packard 734 Speedster was one of the first cars built in series by using the muscle car recipe, long before the term was born: a lightweight body mounted to the company's shortest chassis and fitted with a modified version of its biggest engine. [Read More...]
The 1930 Packard Speedster Eight model, powered by Packard's traditional straight-eight engine, was offered in several magnificent body styles. Its Speedster name wasn't linked to its body style, but rather the high-performance nature of its chassis [Read More...]
Sold for $2,090,000 at 2016 Gooding & Company. The Packard 734 Speedster was the brainchild of Col. Jesse Vincent, Packard's vice president of engineering. In similar fashion to Hot Rods that would follow, the 734 rested on a shortened and narrowed chassis and was equipped with 19-inch wheels, a [Read More...] By Daniel Vaughan | Oct 2016
The Packard 7-34 Speedster was one of the first cars produced using the muscle car recipe, long before the term was born: a lightweight body mounted to the company's shortest chassis and fitted with a modified version of its biggest engine. In 1930, [Read More...]
Packard was produced from 1899 to 1958. It was known for superb engineering and craftsmanship. Between 1924 and 1930, Packard was also the top-selling luxury brand in the world. [Read More...]
When these two vehicles won Best of Show honors at major Concours dElegance events, they both were owned by Judge Joseph Cassini III. The green colored Chrysler 4 door Phaeton with tan convertible top...