Packard Auto Show Comes to Newport Beach
The luxury car brand Packard, manufactured in Detroit until 1956, had a slogan that spoke volumes about its reputation: “Ask the man who owns one.”
Well, a lot of the men who own a variation of the classic car will be in Newport Beach this weekend.
The Packards International Motor Car Club will host a free All-Packard auto show and parts exchange on Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon at the Hyatt Regency Newport Beach hotel.
Packards International vice president Robert Escalante, a Newport Beach resident, said up to 55 Packards will be on display.
“Our people come from all walks of life and they’ve always respected Packard as an American Rolls Royce,” Escalante said. “A lot of these people, their grandfathers or their fathers raised them in a Packard… and they want that life back. I think that’s really the highlight of what keeps this show on the road.
Escalante is the owner of the Custom Auto Service restoration shop in Santa Ana, where Packards International is headquartered. Cathy Hull, secretary and treasurer of the nonprofit social club, said more than 100 club members are expected this weekend for a members’ meeting that includes the auto show.
Hull, who lives in Costa Mesa, said there will be a members-only meetup at Custom Auto Service on Friday night. The mayor of Santa Ana, Vicente Sarmiento, is expected to attend.
The club will host a luncheon at the Hyatt Regency on Saturday, which will feature special guest speaker and vintage car enthusiast Aaron Weiss, the co-founder of the San Marino Motor Classic. An awards ceremony will take place that evening and the weekend will conclude with a Sunday morning cruise to Las Brisas Restaurant in Laguna Beach.
“It’s just a chance to come together,” Hull said. “We haven’t seen each other for over a year because of the pandemic.”
As for the auto show, which is open to the public, Escalante said he expected Packards from the 1920s to the 1950s, in all types and colors.
He added that he was very excited for the events of the weekend.
“They made a million Packards, and there’s only a 10% survival rate,” he said. “With only 100,000 of these cars floating around the world, you can imagine how many cars are leaving per state.”
For more information on the Packards International Motor Car Club, visit the club’s website or call (714) 541-8431.
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