<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003

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Lot 107Y
1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse
Coachwork by Henney Motor Co.

Sold for US$ 58,240 inc. premium
1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse
Coachwork by Henney Motor Co.

Chassis no. 1703A2003

320ci L-head Inline 8-Cylinder Engine
Single Stromberg Carburetor
130bhp at 3,200rpm
3-Speed Manual Transmission with Overdrive
Independent Front Suspension - Live Rear Axle
4-Wheel Hydraulic Drum Brakes

*One of kind Packard with Super Eight motor in a Twelve frame
*Rife with unique early build details
*A monumentally expensive car when new
*Beautifully and painstakingly restored


THE SUPER EIGHT

Always built to the highest standards, the Packard was unquestionably one of the finest American cars of the pre-war era. Packard watershed styling of 1932 was a fleeting moment of perfection as industry priorities were changing rapidly. The market was demanding quieter smoother riding cars and drivers were expecting cars with lighter steering and better brakes. Wheels began to shrink – the stately 20" quickly gave way to 17" wheels and fenders gained skirting to hide the empty space of the lost wheels. These mechanical changes came quickly and Packard struggled to adapt the whole cars to these changes. Up to 1934 the bodies were basically designed for the earlier 1930-32 era cars and the fenders and noses were changed to blend the two. For 1935 a new line of bodies and fenders better embraced the lower frames and smaller wheels.

Packards choice of radiator shell designs in 35' was not one of their better efforts and the cars failed to deliver the looks one expected from America's premier brand. For 1936 everything came together perfectly. A new beautifully designed nose and wonderfully proportioned bodies mated to fenders with exquisite lines and handsome curved lower edge.

THE MOTORCAR OFFERED

We are proud to offer this immensely unique Packard Hearse by Henney Motor co. of Freeport Illinois. Producers of carriages since the 1840s, they had reached prominence in the 20th century as a leading builder of limousines and hearses. As such, they were able to place exacting custom orders to manufacturers like Packard.

The vehicle presented here is one such car. Commissioned in March of 1938 by an upscale funeral home in Virginia, this Super Eight is unlike any other of the period in that it utilizes a V12 Frame, wheels, brakes, and front suspension but relies on an eight-cylinder motor for propulsion. Just one other car was ordered by the same home in similar specification, but it is known to have been dismantled. Due to its early build date, the hearse contains a number of pre-production oddities including a dashboard with 15 unique differences including gauges fitted from behind. Further, the Henney body differs greatly from a standard Packard of the era with unique fenders, hood, and doors. Interestingly, little Packard badging can be found throughout the car, most instances of which had been replaced by custom Henney badges. Only on the hubcaps will you find the Packard name. Known for their masterful woodworking, the interior contains wonderful details of Madagascar ebony and Honduran mahogany. The rear suspension features a unique hydraulic leveling set up as to maintain a consistent ride height with the casket laid in the rear compartment. All in, the vehicle cost roughly $10,000 when new. This was an astronomical figure in the period and was double what a fully loaded off-the-shelf model would've cost in the same year.

Serving its original funeral home until the 1960s, the hearse would go on to be utilized by a rock band for touring. Eventually it ended up in a wrecking yard in the 1970s when it was purchased and brought to Pennsylvania. There is sat again for 23 years until 1998, when a Hemmings ad drew the attention of the consigner. A purchase price of $900 was agreed on, with the further stipulation that the amount would be returned if the car was ever restored. Eventually that deal was realized upon the commencement of an amazingly thorough restoration. Thousands of hours were pored into returning the car to its former glory and thousands more hours of research were conducted in order to ensure every correct detail. All in, the project took roughly a decade to complete, and today shows in spectacular fashion with nary a flaw to be found.

This Henney Packard presents as a wonderful opportunity to add a one of a kind vehicle to a collection. No other build from the period was produced with the unique combination of Twelve and Super 8 parts, making this perfect for a Senior Packard aficionado. Sure to clean up the awards at any car show, this chance to buy such a nicely restored, unique hearse should not be passed on.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note, the title for this vehicle will be in transit.
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<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
<b>1939 Packard Super Eight Hearse</b><br />Chassis no. 1703A2003
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