The 1937 Buick Special / Specs, Photos, More

Featured in this article is a great looking 1937 Buick Special. Production of the Buick Special ran from 1926-1958 and from 1961-1969. During it's years of production the Buick Special changed from a full size model to a compact model and then to a mid-size model.

1937 buick special

1937 Buick Special

The Buick Special was introduced in 1936 and was Buick’s full size entry level car. Some might say that the 1937 and 1938 Buick Specials were the best looking automobiles during those two years.

Big Innovations at Buick During the 1930's

Setting aside the fact that the 1930's are known for the Great Depression which placed millions of people out of work and caused car prices and production to decrease significantly, the were big changes on the design and mechanical departments. Prior to the 1930's, car design coach works were very angular. The 1930's saw an emphasis placed on streamlining and graceful curves.

Competition was obviously intense during the difficult 30's and innovation could help sell cars. The year 1933 was particularly disastrous and is often recognized as the worst of the Great Depression. As an example, Buick sold a bit over 250,000 vehicle in 1927. For the 1933 model year Buick sold just under 50,000 units. The Buick division was hurting but General Motors was determined to keep Buick afloat and the fact the Buick was a part of GM helped save the day.

1930's buick

New grille on the 37 Buick

The innovations brought into the market from Buick during the 1930's included the introduction of the famous 320 cubic inch, straight eight engine that was put into their big series cars. This occurred in 1936. This new designed engine would continue to be used through 1952. Also in 1936, Buick emploted hydraulic braking for the first time.

To mention a few more innovations brought out by Buick in the 1930's, these included a self shifting automatic transmission, aerobat carburetors, turbulator pistons and knee action independent front suspension.

The 1937 Buick Advantage

Buick promoted many advantages of their 1937 models. This included a powerful engine in it's OHV Straight Eight. Also, a Uni-Steel body by Fisher...Anolite pistons...a sealed chassis...hydraulic brakes...large trunk space...safety glass and more.

Buick also touted the fact that prices were some of the lowest in the automaker's history. The country of course was still caught up in the Great Depression which put some automakers into bankruptcy.

Styling Changes

There were styling changes for the 1937 Buick Special. Most notable was the change in grilles. The 36 Special sported a single grille and vertical bars. The 37 model had horizontal bars and a vertical divider bar down the middle.

Fenders were altered to have squared off ends and the height was lowered almost two inches along with the floor. As a result the space in the passenger compartment remained the same.

The 1937 Buick Special was available in eight different styles. These included a convertible phaeton, sport coupe, business coupe, convertible coupe, a two and four door touring sedan with an optional trunk

1937 Buick Special Specifications

The 37 Buick Special was built with a Overhead Valve 248 Cubic Inch Straight 8. The engine delivered 100 HP.

buick special late 1930'sThe gear box was a three speed manual floor shift.

Brakes were four wheel hydraulic drums.

Some of the options available on the 1937 Buick Special included a heater, dual side mounted tires, defroster, white side wall tires plus a grille guard. A buyer could also pay for a  dash installed radio with a built-in speaker.

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The 1937 Buick Special Collector Car and Values

The kind of innovations that Buick introduced during the latter half of the 1930's make these automobiles highly desirable among antique auto enthusiasts.

The years of 1936, 1937 and 1938 and the innovations from Buick during those times represent  the division’s return to being a real market leader. These were new designs and new engineering that were truly progressive. More innovation was seen in 1939 but those three years from 36 through 38 helped keep Buick popular for many years to come. As a result of the progress that Buick made during those years, the division in 1938 moved up to fourth place among American production cars with about 174,000 vehicles.

buick special historyThe 1936-38 Buicks are relatively rare. Values and asking prices for those for sale differ greatly due to overall condition and degree of originality and restoration. As of this date we see a 1937 Buick Special Model 49 with an asking price of $19,000. A 1937 Buick Special Restomod at $35,000 and a 1937 Buick Roadmaster at $27,500. All vehicles mentioned have been restored to varying degrees. Also a 37 Buick Coupe at $26,000.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)

1935 Ford Deluxe Fordor Beauty / Photos, Specs

The automobile featured in this article may be the nicest looking 1935 Ford Deluxe Fordor Sedan you'll find anywhere. This automobile is a real head turner. The 1935 Fords were the Model 48's which replaced the Model 40A's.

1935 for fordor specs

1935 Ford Deluxe Fordor Sedan

The New 1935 Design

Ford Motor made changes to their 1935 V-8. (The V-8 from Ford was first produced in 1932 with the Model 18.) These included moving the engine eight inches forward, increasing the size of the passenger compartment, decreased hood length and making the grille even with the front fenders. The fenders themselves were much more rounded.

Moving the grille forward actually gave the vehicle a more modern look. The windshield was also more sharply sloped. Ford named this new makeover as the Center-Poise Ride.

Two trim lines were offered for 1935, the Standard and Deluxe. The Deluxe models had chrome accents and the Standards did not. Ford marketed their 1935 models with the phrase..."Greater Beauty, Greater Comfort, and Greater Safety.”

The original 1935 design was minimally changed each year beginning in 1936 until 1941 when an entirely new design was introduced. The new 1941 design was relatively short lived since all civilian car production ended in February 1942 due to the Second World War.

1935 ford fordor deluxe photos

More modern look than the 34 models

The entire list of 1935 Ford automobiles produced include...

  Deluxe Roadster
  Deluxe Phaeton
  Deluxe Coupe 5 Window
  Deluxe Tudor Sedan
  Deluxe Fordor Sedan
  Coupe 5 Window
  Coupe 3 Window
  Cabriolet
  Tudor Sedan
  Fordor Sedan
  Touring Sedan
  Convertible Sedan

1935 Was A Banner Year For Ford

The year 1935 was very special for Ford Motor in as much as they overtook Chevrolet in sales. It was the first time this happened since 1930. As mentioned above, the space inside the vehicle was increased by using a boxed side rail frame and increasing the distance from the firewall and the rear axle. The 1935 model's doors were larger, making access easier. The cars also offered a new roll-up window device.

1935 Ford Deluxe Sedan Specifications

This automobile is powered by a 221 cubic inch Flathead V-8 with aluminum heads. The engine delivers 85 horsepower which was the same upped HP that came out with the 1934 models. The four cylinder engine was finally discontinued in 1935 leaving the Flathead V-8 to power all 1935 Ford models.

An interesting side note regarding Ford's V-8's of the early 1930's involves the infamous bank robber Clyde Barrow of the Bonnie and Clyde duo. Supposedly, Clyde sent a letter in 1934 directly to Henry Ford in praise of the powerful new Ford V-8 which enabled him to outrun many police vehicles of the day. Ironically, the 1934 Ford V-8 ended up as the car riddled with a hundred bullets that ended the lives of Bonnie and Clyde.

Gearbox was a three speed manual.

Brakes were mechanical four wheel drum.

Suspension was a solid axle on a transverse leaf spring front and rear. This was an old suspension design that actually came from the old Model T's. Ford Motor Company would stick with this type suspension for years afterward.

Ford Fordor interior photo

35 Ford Model 48 dashboard

Dimensions for the 1935 Ford Deluxe Fordor included a wheelbase of 112.0 inches and an average weight is about 2,600 lbs.

The 1935 model year of course was in the middle of the Great Depression and automakers were scrambling to sell cars. The Ford Fordor Deluxe featured in this article had a new car price of about $640. The Standard model was priced at about $575.

The new 1935 design was very attractive and the price was right. Ford sales were excellent pushing the automaker ahead of Chevrolet for the 1935 model year. In fact 1935 Ford sales was almost twice what 1934 was. Total Ford 1935 production was 820,000 units. Total 1935 Model 48 production was 787,000. Out of that amount, 105,150 were Deluxe Sedan models.

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ford fordor deluxe sedan

Newly designed rear with sloping spare wheel and integrated trunk

The 1935 Ford Collector Car Values

Most will agree that the 1935 Ford is a very popular collector car. Current values are different depending on model but the higher priced would most likely be the Phaeton, Convertible, Woody Wagon and Three Window Deluxe Coupe.

Degree and age of restoration along with originality will of course influence value. The range of retail prices for these 1935 models are from perhaps $7,000 to $28,000. You're likely to find convertible models significantly higher than this range. Any vehicle fully restored will obviously garner higher values.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)

 

1939 Ford Half Ton / Photos, All Details

The vehicle featured in this article is a fine looking restored 1939 Ford Half Ton Pickup.

The 1939 model year was a big one for the Ford Motor Company since it was the first year for the new Mercury nameplate which was a project pushed by Edsel Ford.

1939 ford half ton pickup

1939 Ford Half Ton

1939 was also an important year for Ford pickup trucks in as much as they sported the new design which was introduced in 1938. That same design was carried over to 1939.

This new design and styling that came out in 1938 really pushed the Ford Pickups into a more modern era. Ford Motor Company during the 30's was not known to make rapid changes and upgrades and the 38 truck line represented a major step in that direction since the last basic redesign was in 1935. 1938 was also the first year that Ford offered their cab-over (COE) trucks.

The 1938-39 Design

When you discuss the 39 Ford Pickup you need to look back one year to see the 1938 model with it's totally new cab. These trucks didn't look like anything that came before them. The front end had an oval barrel shaped grille. Some thought the new front end looked British. The new front end featured the industry's first front opening hood.

The cabs were larger as were the cargo beds that had not been changed since 1931. The dashboard was modernized and had recessed controls for safety.  A major change in 1939 however was the addition of hydraulic brakes. This was something Ford had been dragging it's feet on for a long time. GM passed Ford by in this category and Plymouth actually offered hydraulic brakes back in 1928. What did not change to any great extent was the chassis which had a lot to do with Henry Ford thinking that anything more than a marginal change was unnecessary.

Optional equipment included a sliding rear window...a gas cap that locked...radio...dual windshield wipers and chrome bumpers.

This new truck design however lasted only two years for the 38 and 39 model years. Design changed for the 1940 model year where the half tons had a front end that more resembled the car line. The 1940 Ford Pickups also had improved mechanicals along with wider cabs.

1939 Ford Half Ton Specifications

Engine for this model is a 221 cubic inch V-8 L-Head delivering 85 horsepower.

Transmission is a three speed manual.

Hydraulic drum brakes were offered for the first time replacing Ford's mechanical braking system.

1939 ford pickup photos

New grille first introduced for the 1938 model year

Dimensions for the 39 Ford Half Ton included a 112.0 inch wheelbase...weight averaged about 2,700 lbs.

Cargo bed was 77.7 inches in length and 46.0 inches wide.

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1938 Ford Half Ton

late 1930's ford pickups

Design for the 1938 and 39 model years

1939 Ford Half Ton Pickup Collector Trucks

There aren't many trucks out there from this era left to choose from. With that being said there are some fully restored beautiful looking models that don't come cheaply. As of this writing we've seen one show quality restoration offered at $67,000.

If you're fortunate enough to find a 38 or 39 Ford Pickup for a restoration project it appears there are ample sources for parts.

As of this date average sale prices for the 1939 Ford Half Tons range in the $12,000 to $30,000 range depending on condition and degree and date of restoration. This is of course for running vehicles. There may be offerings higher than that as mentioned above.

(Article and photos copyright 2016 Auto Museum Online)