Motor City

25 July 2015

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Lot 138

1933 Packard Twelve Individual Custom Sport Phaeton in the style of LeBaron

  • Chassis no. 901471
  • Engine no. 901473

Sold for $583,000


Series 1006. 160 bhp, 445 cu. in. side-valve V-12 engine with Stromberg two-barrel downdraft carburetor, three-speed synchromesh manual transmission, front suspension via semi-elliptical leaf springs and beam axle, rear suspension via semi-elliptical leaf springs and live axle, and four-wheel vacuum-assisted drum brakes. Wheelbase: 147 in.

  • Offered from a prominent private collection
  • Detailed recreation coachwork by Fran Roxas
  • One of the most extraordinarily beautiful of all Packards
  • Best in Class award winner at Pebble Beach


One of the most spectacular Packards of the Classic Era was the Individual Custom Sport Phaeton, offered solely on the Eleventh Series Twelve chassis on a very limited basis. These cars featured striking streamlined styling with fully skirted fenders, rear fender “spats,” streamlined running boards, and a fabric top disappearing into a fastback roofline, designed along suggestions from Packard styling director Edward Macauley. Actual construction was carried out by the custom shop of LeBaron in Detroit.

Writing of the design in her book, Packard: The Pride, J.M. Fenster commented that “the Sport Phaeton is a peak in the transition from the erect architecture of earlier cars to the rather bulbous aerodynamics to come.” In other words, it was the high water mark of Packard body design in this era.

It is believed that five original examples of the 1108 Twelve Individual Custom Sport Phaeton were built by LeBaron. One of these was eventually shipped to Europe, where it was destroyed during World War II. The remaining four cars survive, and all are part of long-term private or museum collections from which they are unlikely to emerge soon.

Renowned restorer Fran Roxas, famous for his numerous Pebble Beach and CCCA award-winners, took it upon himself to recreate several Sport Phaetons in the 1980s. With Roxas’s typical attention to detail, these cars were painstakingly fabricated to the same standards of craftsmanship as in 1934 on original 12-cylinder Packard chassis. They provide a delightful and most affordable alternative to the “real thing,” with the same driving quality and spectacular styling.

The car shown here is believed to be the fourth built by Mr. Roxas and uses as its basis a 1933 1006 Twelve chassis and engine, which, given the very near proximity of their numbers, were likely mated together when new. This drivetrain is virtually identical to that of the 1934 1108, and Mr. Roxas used correct 1108 styling cues to depict accurately the original Sport Phaeton’s design. The body was finished in deep mink silver, with a color-coordinated leather interior. Conical wheel covers and wide whitewall tires complete the svelte and dignified appearance.

Mr. Roxas maintained this Packard as his personal car until selling it to its present owner, a well-known collector of American Classics, in late 2000. It has been well maintained in the collection ever since. In 2002, it even appeared in the European and American New Coachwork class at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance, performing beautifully on the Tour d’Elegance and achieving Best in Class. It continues to show nearly as well today, with all fits and finishes being attractive and well kept.

The LeBaron-bodied Individual Custom Packard Twelves are considered superlative examples of the marque and are highly sought after by enthusiasts. For those who desire the same experience at a very attractive price point, this car, identical to an original in its every detail, would be a splendid choice.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

aweaver@rmsothebys.com

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

bruprecht@rmsothebys.com

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

dswig@rmsothebys.com

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

drose@rmsothebys.com

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

dgould@rmsothebys.com

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

gduff@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

jauerbach@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

kforry@rmsothebys.com

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

mmalamut@rmsothebys.com

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

msquire@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

ocamelin@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

pdarvill@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

pfisher@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

smyers@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

tvandervelden@rmsothebys.com

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more