Arizona

18-19 January 2018

1938 Packard Twelve Landaulet by Rollston

  • Engine no. A600504
  • Body no. 650
  • Vehicle No. 1608-2025

  • Originally delivered to legendary socialite Doris Duke
  • One-off, bespoke coachwork by a legendary firm
  • Exceptionally elegant and beautifully detailed
  • Classic Car Club of America (CCCA) Full Classic


One of very few surviving late Packard Twelves fitted with truly custom coachwork, this sumptuous 1938 1608 Twelve was ordered as a chassis by Doris Duke, heiress to the American Tobacco Company fortune. At the age of 25, Miss Duke was already the world’s wealthiest woman, and was a prominent figure in the society and gossip columns for much of her eight decades of life. She was a horticulturalist, a noted collector of jewelry and Oriental art, and a major philanthropist, and at various times was married to a U.S. Ambassador to Canada and to infamous sportsman Porfirio Rubirosa.

The Duke Twelve was custom-bodied by Rollston, New York’s most famous and costly coachbuilder, as a modern landaulet, a limousine with a convertible section over the rear seat. Similar in style to a Rollston body produced for the Duesenberg Model J, number J-577, the body featured a relatively rakish one-piece windshield, as well as a lavishly appointed interior with a clock and speedometer. It also featured storage for cocktail accouterments in the rear passenger compartment. Controls for the radio were placed literally at Miss Duke’s hand, in the right rear armrest.

Reportedly the car was delivered to Duke Farms in Hillsborough, New Jersey, and was used to transport its owner on her regular trips between the Garden State and her summer “cottage,” Rough Point in Newport, Rhode Island. Both landmark homes are today restored and open to the public.

The current owner located the fascinating and beautiful one-off Packard in New Jersey in 2007, still wearing its “D.D.” monograms and owned by Charles Patterson. Ray’s Auto Restoration of Webster, Massachusetts, a noted local Packard specialist, oversaw its complete restoration to original condition, including the correct original Duke color scheme, over a two-year period. Fittingly, given its early history, it was first shown at the Newport Concours d’Elegance in 2009, winning Best Pre-War Open Car.

Arguably one of the most significant and desirable late Twelves, this is a spectacular “full custom” Packard, with rich social history that is difficult to match. It is an automobile deserving of “The Richest Girl in the World.”

Addendum

Please note that the title is in transit.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

aweaver@rmsothebys.com

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

bruprecht@rmsothebys.com

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

dswig@rmsothebys.com

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

drose@rmsothebys.com

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

dgould@rmsothebys.com

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

gduff@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

jauerbach@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

kforry@rmsothebys.com

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

mmalamut@rmsothebys.com

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

msquire@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

ocamelin@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

pdarvill@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

pfisher@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

smyers@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

tvandervelden@rmsothebys.com

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more