1932 Packard Twin-Six Coupe Roadster: A Classic Masterpiece

Packard’s Triumph During the Great Depression

The Great Depression marked a challenging era for the luxury car market, which primarily catered to the upper class. Intense competition drove luxury car brands to drastically cut prices and diversify their offerings to attract buyers. Among these contenders, Packard stood out as the pinnacle of luxury, presenting some of its most iconic automobiles during this turbulent period.

Packard’s V-12 Twin Six: Engineering Excellence

To counter the economic downturn and fierce competition, Packard introduced the V-12 Twin Six, a masterpiece of engineering. This vehicle featured a classic multi-cylinder, large-displacement engine known for its quiet operation, durability, and substantial torque, reducing the need for frequent gear-shifting. With an impressive 160 bhp, the V-12 Twin Six could effortlessly propel the premium Packard chassis, regardless of the size of the coachwork it carried.

Diverse and Elegant Custom Bodies

Packard’s commitment to luxury extended beyond the engine to the vehicle’s body. The company offered a wide array of elegant custom bodies, catering to the sophisticated tastes of its clientele. To maintain better control over costs, quality, and design, Packard brought coach building in-house. This strategic move not only increased operational efficiency and profit margins but also ensured the continued high standard of Packard automobiles. Despite this in-house focus, Packard continued to collaborate with renowned studios like Dietrich Inc. for some of its designs.

Targeting the Wealthy Clientele


The V-12 Twin Six was specifically designed for the remaining wealthy clientele, upholding Packard’s tradition of crafting grand, commanding, stylish, and opulent automobiles. This approach ensured that Packard remained synonymous with luxury and excellence, even as other brands struggled to survive.

Financial Strength and Resilience

Unlike many of its contemporaries, Packard weathered the Great Depression well, thanks to its strong financial standing and healthy cash reserves. By the late 1930s, several prestigious names in the automotive industry, including Franklin, Marmon, Ruxton, Stutz, Peerless, Duesenberg, Stearns-Knight, and Pierce-Arrow, had sadly vanished from the market. Packard’s resilience during these years set it apart and secured its legacy as a leader in the luxury car segment.


Packard’s strategic innovations, financial prudence, and unwavering commitment to luxury allowed it to not only survive but thrive during one of the most challenging periods in automotive history. The V-12 Twin Six stands as a testament to Packard’s ingenuity and enduring appeal in the luxury car market.

Source: Bonhams

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