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Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:24 pm
by Let the ride decide
Does anyone have any more information about this museum, dealership, Packard plant in Mexico?

Re: Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 3:30 pm
by Dave Czirr
[*]I'm not sure this is what you were looking for but of course Packard had dealerships in Mexico and I believe at some point an unusually large spare parts inventory was maintained, perhaps to service other Central and South American dealerships. During the 80s Fred and Dan Kanter bought much of the residual inventory from the Mexican operations, Fred is the person you should speak with for details.

Re: Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 4:24 pm
by Let the ride decide
Thanks for the reply.

I had emailed Stuart about this place.
The data plate shown twords the end is not the Packard production data plate.

Stuart sent me this picture with this comment, so I was wanting more information.

We have this photo at work (Kanter Auto) showing "the first" 1940 Packard assembled in Mexico. It must have been a CKD plant of some sort. Years later (1970s?) the manager flew down to Mexico and bought a LOT of the leftover parts from the warehouse down there. I don't know the story behind the plant, though.

There were 6 or so 1956 Caribbean sent to this dealer.

Fred Kanter,
What do you know about this plant, distributor, dealer?

Re: Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:53 am
by Dave Czirr
LTRD, Fred doesn't participate in this forum, I suggest you pick up the phone and give him a call.

It's really sad how little we know about Packard's export operations, especially as they were very successful with them over the years. Over in Belgium D'Ieteren Freres (the company that provided custom coachwork for Minerva, Rolls, Hispano, Isotta, etc.) had a license (post war at least) to assemble Studebakers and Volkswagens from CKD kits and in the V8 era they did a few Packards. Whether these were just for Belgium or perhaps for the Benelux countries I don't know and it would be no surprise that similar operations were up and running elsewhere. I sure wish we could find more info about these types of operations.

I'd not seen the Mexico data tag before, but as of 1939 Packard had 3 distributors in Mexico, O'Farrill is listed in both Mexico City and Puebla with the notation that all mail is to be directed to the Puebla location. The other distributors were located in Guadalajara and Monterey. The only other little tidbit about production in Mexico may pertain just to Studebaker, I don't know, but in 1962 Ford purchased the Studebaker Packard plant at Tlalnepantla in the state of Mexico and converted it into a foundry for chassis and tools.

Somewhat related, here's a delivery tag for a Packard delivered in Germany.
German delivery.jpg

Re: Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:58 am
by Dave Czirr
One other little bit of trivia about cars delivered into Mexico (and Chile) in an earlier era, this Packard blueprint last modified in 1934 notes that such cars will have modified patent plates with added information about trade mark registration "MARCA REGISTRADA" in the upper right corner.
Patent Plate 133933 sm.jpg

Re: Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:25 pm
by Let the ride decide

Thanks that was interesting to me.

I guess the only non-US discussion I was familiar with is the Canadian plant so when this came to light it was enlightening.

CKD kits were they standard for all non US dealer distributor?

I agree it would be interesting to find out more about these places.

Re: Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Sat Mar 09, 2019 6:48 am
by Dave Czirr
CKD kits were they standard for all non US dealer distributor?

No. For example, while the Canadian plant was in operation the cars destined for the Commonwealth countries already had enough Commonwealth (Canadian) content to meet the reduced tariff, that's the primary reason one would build a Canadian plant. I suspect CKD kits were only used in limited situations where there was enough potential volume of available business but tariffs put Packard at a significant price disadvantage versus competition. We do know that, at least generally, cars into Europe and Scandanavia went in as complete cars, not kits.

Re: Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Tue May 21, 2019 6:07 pm
by V.Milke
Hi guys:

I used to be a member but hadn't been back in years... so I had to register again. I live in Mexico and I can add a bit to the information in the post. I was contacted by Michael Franko and he requested help on the subject. I contacted a friend in Puebla, Luis Arguelles, who was kind enough to look for an old article on the subject, so here it is, with my translation and pics of the article published by El Automovil Mexicano, in July 1949.

Clearly a brief article written with little hard data and a lot of words not saying much...

Automotriz O'Farrill
Assemblers and Distributors for Packard and Mack in the Republic (Mexico)

One of the clearest examples of active and modern life of the city of Puebla is the Packard automobile assembly plant that is owned by Automotriz O'Farrill, exclusive distributors for all the Republic (Mexico) for that brand of vehicles and of Mack trucks, buses and fire apparatus.

The building of the modern plant rises on 3,040 square meters of land with a total of 8,000 square meters of built structure. The plant's capacity of assembly is 1,500 units anually, having been assembled 1,200 cars over the past 17 months.

This important business has seventeen distributors in the Mexican Republic, with main offices in Puebla. It has, as we mentioned, the distribution of Packard automobiles and Mack trucks, and is also representative of Bendix International; on it's aviation department, of United Aircraft, from Hartford, Conn, U.S.A. It's Directors are Mr. Romulo O'Farrill Sr., President, and Mr. Romulo O'Farrill Jr. and Mr. Paul E. Buntzler, Vicepresidents.

Automotriz O'Farrill S.A. has four hundred workers in the assembly plant, the service department and the sales agency in Mexico city.

During the visit that one representative from El Automovil Mexicano magazine made to the Packard plant, in Puebla, he could see the importance of this business within the automotive activities in the Republic, as of it's possitive value within the industry of the State of Puebla.

In these same pages we are publishing several interesting pictures from the plant during the assembly process of the Packard cars aso of the some of the Sales Departments and the Exhibition room of the important business. By them our readers will notice that the plant has the most modern equipment to do a quality and precission job that distinguishes this firm, that utilizes technicians and specialized workers in the assembly of the Packard cars.

These type of industries, no doubt, not only contribute to the development of the national economy but also fill the very interesting activity of raising the capacity of our specialized workers, created on that new area of industrial workers that the country so much needs.

The constructive and creative work of the Directors of Automotriz O'Farril has always been seen with good eyes and satisfaction of the people of the very beautiful and active Puebla of the Angels (official name of the city) since 1939 when this business started to work with great efficiency.

Re: Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Tue May 21, 2019 6:11 pm
by V.Milke
I am computer illiterate and can't seem to add pics... sorry. If somebody can shed some light, I will gladly do it.


Re: Packard plant in Mexico?

Posted: Tue May 21, 2019 8:27 pm
by Let the ride decide

Thank you!