20 Years In A Garage: 1955 Packard 400 Survivor


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As I’ve mentioned before, I love 1955-1956 Packards. This 400 really looks classy to me, and it’s nicely aged after spending 20 years in a garage! It’s now in Port Jefferson Station, New York, and is being sold here on eBay.


I just love how smooth and classy the lines are, although I also realize they aren’t to everyone’s taste. When I first saw the ad, I wondered why the seller didn’t bother to close the trunk lid. As it turns out, there’s a trunk absolutely jam-packed with spare parts that you can see later on in the ad pictures.


The seller notes that the hydraulic front end lift works. I hope that lift is causing the stance that is so high in the front and low in the rear. Maybe it’s all the parts stored in the trunk as well?


It looks as if the seats have been preserved under clear covers, which was pretty common back then. There’s a lot of cool things going on with this car, but let’s list the problems first. The fuel gauge and wipers don’t work, and the water pump is making noise. That’s it! Everything else is functional and the seller tells us there is absolutely zero rust!


Here’s the 352 cubic inch V8 just waiting to have that water pump replaced. It’s available here for $155. I’m surprised the seller hasn’t replaced it, to be honest, but at least it’s available for not a lot of money. Given that the seller says it “runs and drives and stops as it should,” it doesn’t seem like it would take that much to get the three things mentioned above corrected, merely so one could say there’s nothing that doesn’t work. Who knows, though, maybe that means the reserve is lower than it otherwise would be. And for all you folks that complain when we feature a four-door, this isn’t one! Let us know what you think of this garage find!

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. Mitch

    Love it-I’d get it if I had the storage & shelter for it. We had a guy here (Ohio) that had a number of them in a pole barn, both Packards & Caribbeans (& yes they were separate models at that time) I’d like to know if they still exist there.

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    • Dairymen

      The Caribbean is still a packard model just like the patrician, mayfair, “400”, clipper etc. You make it sound like there were packards & caribbeans as 2 different brands.

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  2. Rich

    Loved these since I was a kid. Great color combination on this.

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  3. Charles


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  4. Coventry Cat

    Love those Packards.

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  5. another Bob

    We had a 55 Packard Custom Clipper when I was a kid. Loved that car!

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  6. HoA Howard AMember

    Now be honest. Isn’t this one of the most beautiful 1955 cars that was offered. It should have saved Packard. It’s still got the freakin’ plastic on the seats! Not sure the seller knows what they’re talking about, as the reason it’s sagging in the back, is probably due to the “Torsion-Level Ride” suspension, which used electric motors to turn torsion bars to correct for extra weight. It was a troublesome feature, but when it worked, claimed the smoothest ride in the industry. Like GM’s “air ride”, it proved troublesome and many owners had their cars switched back to springs. I believe, this car was one of the top cars offered. Amazing find. Wouldn’t take much to get this “stately Packard” back to it’s glory. The last gasp for the Packard.

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  7. Robert White

    Over on YouTube one can see the video of the old man that lives in the old Packard plant in Detroit as a night/day watchman. BF members should take a look
    at it just for history sake. And this 55 Packard is exceptionally nice IMHO. I would buy this car in a heartbeat if I won the lottery.


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  8. John H. from CT

    Beautiful car but Ebay listing says over 100K miles. As a 50’s car with this mileage it may need much more than water pump…

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  9. Jeff DeWitt

    Nice car, I’d be proud to drive it. Add AC and I’d drive it a LOT.

    Even with over 100k I wouldn’t be that worried about the engine, the Ultramatic is another story.

    I LOVE that dash!

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  10. Ed P

    I am a big fan of the 55-56 Packard’s and this is a beautiful example of one of their senior cars. It is just amazing that Packard could build a car as nice as this with so many mechanical shortcomings. The Packardbakers will never hold a candle to this car.

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