Packard’s 1946 lineup, known as the 21st series, featured the Custom Super Clipper Eight Limousine as its most luxurious and powerful vehicle. The model retained the sleek pre-war Clipper design with minimal changes, and Packard incorporated wartime manufacturing insights into their post-war models.
During World War II, Packard engines played a crucial role in powering allied forces on land and in the air. They produced over 13,000 12-cylinder marine engines for high-speed patrol torpedo boats and manufactured more than 56,000 Rolls-Royce Merlin engines under license, known as the Packard V-1650. These supercharged V-12 aircraft engines propelled renowned British aircraft such as Spitfires, Lancasters, and notably, the North American P-51 Mustang.
The Custom Super Clipper Eight Limousine was built on Packard’s exclusive 148-inch-wheelbase extended chassis, reserved for their prestigious vehicles. Its elegant body lines featured fade-away fenders, and the elongated hood housed the renowned Packard Super Eight engine known for its smooth operation.
Although not as powerful as the V-1650’s 1,400 horsepower, the 356-cubic-inch straight-eight engine produced a leisurely 165 horsepower at 3,600 rpm. With a nine-bearing crankshaft, excellent balance, hydraulic valve lifters, and near-silent running, the engine delivered a refined experience. Power was transmitted through an overdrive transmission.
Additionally, the limousine boasted Safe-T-Flex suspension, ensuring a comfortable ride on any road. It further featured a fifth shock absorber that minimized side-to-side oscillations, enhancing the overall driving experience.
Source: RM Sotheby’s