Always built to the highest standards, the Packard was unquestionably one of the finest American automobiles of the pre-war era and deservedly popular on this side of the Atlantic. Dissatisfaction with his Winton motor carriage is said to have spurred James Ward Packard to build a superior automobile. Aided by his brother and two defectors from the Winton company, Packard set up shop in his electrical engineering factory in Warren, Ohio, from which the first Packard car emerged in November 1899. Right from the start, Packard's innovative engineering and superior build quality attracted the attention of wealthy clients, William D Rockefeller purchasing two at the New York Automobile Show in November 1900. 'Ask The Man Who Owns One' was adopted as the company's advertising slogan. The Packard was counted among the world's top luxury makes and was a frequent sight at the most exclusive society functions of its era, being favoured by film stars, celebrities and plutocrats. Indeed, throughout the 1910s and 1920s, Packard ranked alongside Peerless and Pierce-Arrow, this elite trio of the US automobile industry being known as the 'Three P's'.
Introduced for the 1935 season, the 'One-Twenty' Eight, also known as the 'Junior Packard', represented the company's first foray into the medium-priced market sector. This example has the 282ci (4,623cc) 120bhp engine; independent front suspension, synchromesh transmission and hydraulic brakes having been part of the specification for some years. Curiously, the 'One-Twenty' designation was dropped for 1938 but returned for 1939, the car offered here belonging to the following year's 18th Series, which commenced production in August '39.
A right-hand drive example, this particular One-Twenty Coupé was purchased by the current owner in 2002 having been in storage for a number of years (the odometer reading of 27,945 miles is believed genuine). The Packard was then restored during 2007-2008, the exterior colour being changed from Burgundy to white and the interior re-trimmed in red leather in the process, while all the brightwork was re-plated. The car was then fully serviced but has seen very little use since completion. A photographic record of the restoration is on file and the car also comes with the relevant invoices, an old-style logbook and V5C registration document. A spare set of original steel wheels complete with hubcaps is included in the sale.