Auctions and Brokerage
Coachwork by Dietrich
Phil Cohen, Anchorage, Alaska (acquired prior to 1994)Clay Cook, Erlanger, Kentucky (acquired from the above circa 2000)Current Owner (acquired from the above in 2005)
AACA National Award for Best Packard (First Place)Multiple 100-Point Scores at CCCA MeetsPebble Beach Concours d’Elegance®, Pebble Beach, California, 2003 (Second Place, American Classics 1925–1932 Open Class)Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance, Amelia Island, Florida, 2004 (Most Outstanding Finish)Meadow Brook Concours d’Elegance, Rochester, Michigan, 2004 (Most Outstanding Finish)Greystone Mansion Concours d’Elegance, Beverly Hills, California, May 2013 (Best of Class, Packard)Palos Verdes Concours d’Elegance, Rancho Palos Verdes, California, September 2013 (First in Class, Dietrich Coachwork Open)
By the late 1920s, Packard had firmly established itself as one of the finest and most stylish motor cars in the world. Recognized for its engineering excellence, Packard counted among its successes its “Twin Six” V-12 engine that was produced from 1916–1923. The following year, the Twin Six was replaced by an inline eight-cylinder engine that quickly became known for its smooth and virtually silent operation.
The 645 Deluxe Eight was Packard’s top-of-the-line car for 1929, and as such boasted a long 145.5" wheelbase that gave the car a very stately presence, not to mention an abundance of legroom for rear seat passengers. The 645 Deluxe Eight was powered by the 385 cid eight that had debuted two years prior in the long-wheelbase models. As with other premium carmakers of the day, Packard offered plenty of body styles created by preeminent coachbuilders such as Rollston, Dietrich, LeBaron, Fleetwood, and Murphy. The rarest of the sixth-series models, just 2,061 Deluxe Eights were built, with total series production topping 54,000 units.
This particular Packard 645 has the desirable Dual Cowl Sport Phaeton coachwork designed by Dietrich and was a presentable, running car in 1994 when Phil Cohen, its Alaska-based owner, commissioned a no-expense-spared restoration. That concours-correct effort was conducted by the renowned Clay Cook Enterprises of Erlanger, Kentucky, and involved over 5,000 man-hours to complete. The color combination that was chosen is perfect for the sporting yet elegant design. The hunter green and its lighter accents are lovely counterparts to the cinnamon leather interior, blackwall tires, and ideal amount of chrome. Period accessories on this Sport Phaeton include factory wind wings, dual side-mounted spares, driving lights, and a woven radiator stone guard. Since 2005, the Packard has been fastidiously maintained in the consignor’s respected West Coast collection, and has been perpetually kept in top cosmetic form.
The impressive quality and correctness of the restoration has been confirmed numerous times over the years at prominent shows. Highlights of its show achievements include an AACA National Award for Best Packard, multiple 100-point scores at Classic Car Club of America Meets, second place in American Classics 1925–1932 Open Class at the 2003 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance®, and Most Outstanding Finish awards at the 2004 Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance and 2004 Meadow Brook Concours d’Elegance. In its current ownership, the Packard added additional class wins to its résumé in 2013 at Palos Verdes and Greystone Mansion in California.
Whether it is garnering admiring crowds and awards on the show field or providing its passengers the thrill of cruising on a sweeping country road, this prestigious Packard 645 Dual Cowl Sport Phaeton is sure to impress wherever it appears.