In this post in 2010, «Louis» asked you to guess what this car is. As you learned at the time, it is a modern interpretation of a 1934 Packard Twelve that Packard never built, a LeBaron boat tail fastback, built by noted Packard restorer, Fran Roxas.
Roxas, appropriately enough, called his creation the Myth. «Louis» learned that this hand-built car was to be auctioned at Monterey, California on the weekend of the famous Pebble Beach Concours in 2010. So, «Louis» et Mme la Vache drove the Vachemobile to Monterey and were able to see the Myth for real!
The car is stunning. The craftsmanship is simply amazing. The car looks low in the photographs - and it is! It is only 54" high. Anyone over 6' tall would not only have trouble getting in to the car, they would feel rather cramped once inside. Nonetheless, the interior is elegant in its simplicity. It is fitted with a genunie Packard Twelve steering wheel and instrument panel. Custom made fitted leather luggage resides behind the seats.
«Louis» was in hopes he would be able hear the engine, but that was not to be. The Packard V-12 displaced 445 cubic inches, but Roxas punched this engine out to 500 cubic inches. Enzo Ferrari admired the Packard V-12 and patterned his own V-12 to a degree after the Packard engine. (The difference being the Packard is a long-stroke engine, designed to produce a lot of torque and silky-smooth operation. Ferrari's design opted for horsepower and high-revs over torque and smoothness.) As a tip of the hat to Ferrrari, Roxas fitted the twelve in the Myth with three two-barrel Weber carburetors as Ferrari used on many of his engines. Roxas also gave the Myth a Ferrari-like exhaust note.
«Louis'» was quite taken with this car, but he does have some reservations about its execution. As noted in the original post, Roxas had asked the late Strother McMinn, a famed car stylist, to sketch what the LeBaron-bodied car Packard didn't build might look like. (Packard offered a LeBaron bodied Twelve four door dual-cowl Phaeton, a LeBaron boat tail convertible, and a LeBaron fast back coupe - but there was no fast back boat tail body. McMinn's design was true to the Packard concept of sporty elegance in these LeBaron bodied cars. And there's the rub «Louis» has with Roxas' undeniably amazing creation. The Myth was not built true to McMinn's design. Rather McMinn's design was a starting point. As built, the Myth could have been done by a Southern California chop shop, and as such, has more of a hot rod influence, the polar opposite of the sporty elegance Packard's LeBaron-bodied cars achieved. Packards weren't about hot rods. They were about making a quite, bespoke statement that the owner "had arrived"; sporty Packards were Harris Tweed sport coats woven of fine Scottish wool, not Southern California t-shirts and duck tail hair cuts, slicked back with Brylcreem...