Monday, December 26, 2016

Packard, Simplex-Crane, & Honda

That’s a Simplex-Crane motorcar — a short remembrance of the cars and company history is on Wikipedia. Brief because that’s about all the Time they had. 

This black touring car with red leather seats was ordered by his son and given to senior John D Rockefeller for his 83rd birthday in 1917. Still operable, it’s a hundred years old now, which is why it’s popping up in classic car material I read.

Simplex-Crane was long gone by my Time, but another top car of the era, and of my day in my growing up years, was Packard. 1917 below, contemporary with Rockefeller's car

I've recalled here before that when the 1951 Packard was introduced, must have been autumn 1950 because that's when the new year models were introduced annually in those days, 

my father went down to the Packard dealership on Grace Avenue to see, most unusual for him, brought home a brochure, which I still have, of the beautiful new cars, and talked about buying one. Along with the 1948 Buick brochure he'd brought home a couple years earlier, two of the more exciting events of my teen years except that he bought neither the Packard nor the Buick, but a Dodge sedan and a couple years later the Plymouth station wagon that was our major ride as teenagers. Those final years of Packard saw some lovely cars through the 1956 model year 

But in the mid-1950s Studebaker bought out the failing Packard, closed the enormous Packard factory in Detroit, and for 1957 introduced a motorized grotesquerie that was a stylized Studebaker V8 with Packard label

before closing Packard altogether into automotive history.

But I began with Simplex-Crane. Most costly and built to order, those cars were for the wealthiest Americans of the age and perhaps of all time. Magnificent, but couldn’t have ridden as comfortably, or driven as beautifully, as a 2017 Honda Accord, an American car manufactured in Marysville, Ohio 

Speaking of which reminds me. I have a picture of son Joe maybe twenty years ago, standing outside the Ford dealership, must have been in Cincinnati, Ohio when he and Patty lived there and Joe was designing jet engines for GE Aviation, taking delivery of his new blue Ford F-150 pickup truck. Similarly perhaps, taking delivery of, naturally, a white one, and now making the rounds online, and to close with my devotional and a Bible verse, it is said that

Jesus drove a Honda but didn't talk about it, "for I did not speak of my own Accord." (John 12:49).


thanks, Tassa

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