1938 Packard 1608 Twelve

History

The Packard Twelve was produced from 1933 to 1939 with over 35,000 examples produced. It is considered by many to be one of the finest automobiles produced by Packard and one of the most significant creations of the classic car era. The long and flowing front hood hid a 445 cubic-inch side-valve twelve cylinder engine that was refined, powerful, smooth, and quiet.

The engine was originally destined for a front wheel drive project which eventually proved to have weaknesses. That and the anticipated development cost were too much to be practical so Packard decided to scrap the idea. Cadillac had introduced their 16-cylinder engine and other marques such as Pierce-Arrow were improving the performance of their offerings. Packard was feeling the pressure and decided to place the engine into the Deluxe Eight Chassis and dubbed it the Twin Six. The name was in honor of Packard's achievement fifteen years earlier when the introduced their first 12-cylinder engine. By 1933 the name was changed to Twelve to be inline with the rest of the Packard models.

Most of the Packard production Twelve's received factory bodies. Only a handful received custom coachwork by such greats as LeBaron and Dietrich.

In 1935 Packard introduced more horsepower and mechanical improvements. The suspension became more plush and comfortable while the steering became easier to operate. The cars were designed and built as one unit including the fenders, running boards, hood and body.

1936 the final year for 17 inch wire wheels and the double blade bumpers with hydraulic dampers.


By Daniel Vaughan | Apr 2008

1938 Vehicle Profiles

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Phaeton
Coachwork: Derham

Packard introduced its Sixteenth Series Super Eight and Twelve models in September 1937. Most changes were cosmetic including more rounded fenders and veed windshields on many bodies. Packard sales totaled 48,682 units for 1938, less than 1937, but s....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Convertible Sedan
Coachwork: Dietrich

Chassis Num: 600583
Engine Num: A-600583

The Packard Twelve was the company's top-of-the-line automobile and many people believe the signature car of the Classic Era. It was a conservative automobile with elegant appointments and a refined chassis powered by a quiet 12-cylinder powerplant. ....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Convertible Sedan
Coachwork: Dietrich

Packard was the first automaker to manufacture a 12-cylinder car, and between 1915 and 1923 more than 35,000 of them rolled out of the factory. Packard then turned to straight-eights, but eight years later, when Cadillac announced that it would make ....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Touring Cabriolet
Coachwork: Brunn

Packard's most expensive cataloged models were the two Brunn Cabriolets, both of which had base price tags of $8,510. The vehicles, though similar to the Dietrich-designed convertible sedan shell, used Brunn's own exclusive 4-door bodies, with all d....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Convertible Coupe

Chassis Num: 11392020

In 1938, Packard offered the Twelve with 14 different body styles and constructed 566 in various configurations. ....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Landavlet Touring Cabriolet
Coachwork: Brunn

Chassis Num: A600114

Coachbuilder Hermann Brunn designed for himself a long-wheelbase landaulet-type body with open chauffeur compartment in 1935. He called it cabriolet. Lincoln added the design to their catalog custom line for 1937 and was extended to Packard in 1938....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Convertible Sedan
Coachwork: Brunn

Chassis Num: 16082007
Engine Num: A600189

This 1938 Packard V-12 Brunn Touring Cabriolet Sixteenth Series 1608 was offered for sale at the 2006 Gooding & Company Auction held at Pebble Beach, Ca. The car was offered with a reserve and estimated to sell for $150,000-$225,000. It is powered ....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Touring Cabriolet
Coachwork: Brunn

Chassis Num: 1608-2007
Engine Num: A600189

Brunn created a long-wheelbase landaulet-type body with an open chauffeur compartment, which he called a cabriolet, in 1935. Two years later, it was added to the Lincoln catalog custom line. The following year, in 1938, it became park of Packard's ....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Convertible Coupe

Chassis Num: A600534

This vehicle is a 1938 Packard Twelve Coupe Roadster Model 1608 that has been given a comprehensive restoration since new. The interior features tan leather and there are whitewall tires, dual side-mounted spares with proper Packard metal covers and....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Touring Cabriolet
Coachwork: Brunn

This 1938 Packard Twelve Model 1608 Landaulet wears coachwork by Brunn. The 1938 Packard Twelves featured a new vee'd windshield, hood and grille with three adjustable cooling louvers along each side of the hood a new instrument panel. An industry ....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

All Weather Town Car
Coachwork: Rollston & Company

Chassis Num: 1135-2005

New York City coachbuilder Rollston was highly regarded for its formal town cars, which were designed to be driven by a liveried chauffeur who rode exposed to the elements, in the style of horse-drawn carriages. Their popularity led Packard to catalo....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Convertible Sedan
Coachwork: Dietrich

Chassis Num: 411472

There were 566 examples of the Packard Twelve produced for 1938 and just 25 were given the Dietrich-designed Convertible Sedan body style, selling for nearly $6,000 when new. This example is a Series 1608 powered by a 473.3 cubic-inch L-head V12 eng....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Town Car
Coachwork: Brunn

The Brunn-Derham Town Car body on this car was originally built by Brunn & Company on a 1929 Pierce-Arrow chassis. The original owner of that car liked the town car so much that in 1938 she had its beloved body transferred to a new chassis - this Pac....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Limousine
Coachwork: Bohman & Schwartz

This 1938 Packard Twelve 1608 Limousine was originally owned by actor Lionel Barrymore, who had the wheelchair conversion made by coachbuilder Bohman & Schwartz for $1,850.....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Convertible Sedan
Coachwork: Brunn

Chassis Num: A600520

This Packard Twelve Model 1608 was sold new by California Packard dealer Earl C. Anthony Inc. in August of 1938. It is believed that this car was once part of the Harrah Collection before passing through several individuals and then finally joining a....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

All-Weather Cabriolet
Coachwork: Brunn

Chassis Num: A600416

1 of 3 Built! In 1938 Brunn was awarded a contract to build a few Touring Cabriolets and All-Weather Cabriolets (Town Cars) for their twelve-cylinder Model 1608 and 1708 chassis (1938-39). Normally 95 per cent of series-built production bodies would ....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Convertible Victoria
Coachwork: Derham

Chassis Num: 1608-2030
Engine Num: A600130

One of the premier coachbuilders of the American classic age, Derham created bodies for many clients, including heads of state. Derham-bodied cars furnished transportation in 15 coronations around the globe, and the company was the only coachbuilder ....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

All-Weather Cabriolet
Coachwork: Brunn

In 1938 Brunn was awarded the contract to build the Touring Cabriolets and the All-Weather Cabriolets for Packard's 12-cylinder Model 1608 chassis. Packard shipped the rolling chassis to Buffalo with a soapbox driver's seat in place and gave Brunn $1....[continue reading]

Custom Landaulette
Coachwork: Rollston & Company

Chassis Num: 16082025
Engine Num: A600504

This Packard Twelve was commissioned by the world's wealthiest woman, by millionaire heiress Doris Duke. Doris Duke was the child of James Buchanan Duke and Nanaline Holt Inman. James Buchanan Duke died in 1925 and Doris (aged twelve upon his death) ....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

All-Weather Cabriolet
Coachwork: Brunn

Chassis Num: 608 2022
Engine Num: A600446

Mr. Phil Hill acquired this Brunn-bodied All Weather Cabriolet in 1966 from the estate of Annis Van Nuys Schweppe, the daughter of Los Angeles developer Isaac Newton Van Nuys. Hill rebuilt the engine and addressed certain cosmetic and mechanical issu....[continue reading]

1938 Packard 1608 Twelve vehicle information

Touring Cabriolet
Coachwork: Brunn

Engine Num: A600485

A new V-12 Packard model was introduced in 1932, powered by a 67-degree V-block displacing 445 cubic-inches. Named the Twin Six, its name was changed the following year to simply Packard Twelve. Two years later, the engine displacement rose to 473.3 ....[continue reading]

Phaeton by Derham
 
Convertible Sedan by Dietrich
Chassis #: 600583 
Convertible Sedan by Dietrich
 
Touring Cabriolet by Brunn
 
Convertible Coupe
Chassis #: 11392020 
Landavlet Touring Cabriolet by Brunn
Chassis #: A600114 
Convertible Sedan by Brunn
Chassis #: 16082007 
Touring Cabriolet by Brunn
Chassis #: 1608-2007 
Convertible Coupe
Chassis #: A600534 
Touring Cabriolet by Brunn
 
All Weather Town Car by Rollston & Company
Chassis #: 1135-2005 
Convertible Sedan by Dietrich
Chassis #: 411472 
Town Car by Brunn
 
Limousine by Bohman & Schwartz
 
Convertible Sedan by Brunn
Chassis #: A600520 
All-Weather Cabriolet by Brunn
Chassis #: A600416 
Convertible Victoria by Derham
Chassis #: 1608-2030 
All-Weather Cabriolet by Brunn
 
Custom Landaulette by Rollston & Company
Chassis #: 16082025 
All-Weather Cabriolet by Brunn
Chassis #: 608 2022 
Touring Cabriolet by Brunn
 


Concepts by Packard



Recent Vehicle Additions

Performance and Specification Comparison

Price Comparison

$468-$9,500
1938 1608 Twelve
1938 Packard 1608 Twelve Price Range: $4,370 - $9,500

Model Year Production

#1#2#3Packard
1942Chevrolet (254,885)Ford (160,432)Plymouth (152,427)33,776
1941Chevrolet (1,008,976)Ford (691,455)Plymouth (522,080)
1940Chevrolet (764,616)Ford (541,896)Plymouth (430,208)
1939Chevrolet (577,278)Ford (487,031)Plymouth (423,850)24,350
1938Chevrolet (465,158)Ford (410,263)Plymouth (285,704)55,718
1937Ford (942,005)Chevrolet (815,375)Plymouth (566,128)122,593
1936Ford (930,778)Chevrolet (918,278)Plymouth (520,025)
1935Ford (820,253)Chevrolet (548,215)Plymouth (350,884)788
1934Ford (563,921)Chevrolet (551,191)Plymouth (321,171)
1933Chevrolet (486,261)Ford (334,969)Plymouth (298,557)4,800

Related Automotive News

Alfa Romeo Named Best of Show at the 68th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance

Alfa Romeo Named Best of Show at the 68th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance

Touring-Bodied Alfa Romeo 8C 2900B Named Best of Show at the 68th Pebble Beach Concours dElegance PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (August 26, 2018) — After an intense competition that drew diverse cars...
1929 Mercedes-Benz S Barker Tourer Named Best Of Show At The 67Th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance

1929 Mercedes-Benz S Barker Tourer Named Best Of Show At The 67Th Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (August 20, 2017) — Just a week ago, Bruce R. McCaws 1929 Mercedes-Benz S Barker Tourer emerged from the restoration shop of Steve Babinsky in Lebanon, New Jersey. Today, having crossed...
Lancia Named 2016 Best of Show

Lancia Named 2016 Best of Show

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (August 21, 2016) — The 2016 Pebble Beach Concours dElegance concluded with first-time entrant Richard Mattei lifting the top prize high overhead soon after his 1936 Lancia...
63rd Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance Names 1934 Packard  'Best of Show'

63rd Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance Names 1934 Packard 'Best of Show'

The competition showcased 248 cars, including 48 from abroad PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (August 18, 2013) -- A 1934 Packard 1108 Twelve Dietrich Convertible Victoria owned by Joseph and Margie Cassini...
Lincoln at Los Angeles Auto Show Press Days: Celebration of Its Past and Future As Brand Rolls Out Its Reinvention

Lincoln at Los Angeles Auto Show Press Days: Celebration of Its Past and Future As Brand Rolls Out Its Reinvention

The brand pays tribute to its heritage today, displaying seven of the most influential Lincoln designs Thursday sees a display full of the all-new MKZ premium midsize sedan and MKZ Hybrid, the future...

© 1998-2020. All rights reserved. The material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


Vehicle information, history, and specifications from concept to production.

Follow ConceptCarz on Facebook Follow ConceptCarz on Twitter RSS News Feed

Conceptcarz.com
© 1998-2020 Conceptcarz.com Reproduction or reuse prohibited without written consent.