- Packard (USA). Formed in
1899, taken over in 1901, Packard became established as a leading manufacturer
of luxury cars during the Edwardian period. That position was held through
to World War II, but never regained after it. Studebaker was acquired
in 1954, then the ailing group was taken over, and the last Packards
were sold in 1958.
- The first reinforced concrete
building erected for motor car manufacture was the Packard factory constructed
in Detroit in 1903 and designed by architect Albert Kahn, who was to
become the leading designer of car factories for the American motor
- The first wind-up window
mechanism (the "Perfect") was introduced on 1919 model Packard
and Pierce-Arrow cars. Before that, railway carriage-type leather strap
window lifts were used.
- Air conditioning was first
offered on the 1940 model Packard Super-8 One-Sixty ('cooled by mechanical
refrigeration') launched in August 1939. Nash's much publicised 1938
'Weather-Eye' system was merely controlled heating and ventilation of
filtered air, even though Nash had just purchased the Kelvinator refrigerator
- Powered operated seats
were first used on the 1947 Packards. Electrically controlled door locks
were fitted to 1955 Packards. Electrically controlled self levelling
suspension was used on 1955 Packards.
- The first car to be fitted
with automatic ignition advance was the 1900 Model B Packard (the Packard
brothers were in the electric lighting business before branching out
into car manufacture). Centrifugal fly-weights varied the ignition timing
in relation to engine speed, a principle which was universally used
into the electronic era.