Saturday, August 17, 2013

Off topic: the 1955 Packard Clipper

Does anyone else on here like old cars? I saw this one in my neighborhood a few weeks ago, but it's gone now.

As far as I can tell, this was a 1955 Packard Clipper, possibly the last Packard design sold. Packard held on as a brand name for a couple more model years, but in their last days Packards were just Studebakers with a Packard badge on them.

The 1955 Chevy was pretty hot. The '55 Ford was pretty cool, too, and so was the 1955 Plymouth owned by a guy I used to work with. He takes it to car shows, and it looks ... neat.

Imagine a 12-year-old boy riding in the family Packard while his friends rode in Chevys and Fords.

Maybe a car enthusiast I know as right, and this car might be better off recycled as razor blades. I hope not. Maybe someone can restore it or use it for parts. Cars like these need to be in car shows. We see enough 60s-era Camaros and Mustangs. I want to see a Packard Clipper or a 1974 AMC Gremlin or a Chevy Vega or Ford Pinto. You know, the kind of cars people actually drove.


One other thing about this car that I need to mention. As with cars of its era, and into the 1970s, it had a chrome-plated steel bumper. Fuel economy and the 5 mph standard wiped them out, and fiberglass and plastic bumpers took their place, I think.

Here in Huntington WV, we had a plant that made chrome-plated bumpers up to the end. I remember having to go to the plant gate the day the company announced the plant was closing because no one was buying its product anymore. By that time, the only workers left were the old ones with a lot of seniority. With that being more than 30 years ago, I doubt many of them are alive, if any.