1958 Ford Two Door Ranch Wagon / Specs, Photos

The automobile featured in this article is the 1958 Ford Two Door Ranch Wagon. This particular vehicle is in great shape and looks real good. You don't see these restored Ford Ranch Wagons everyday and they are fairly rare at car shows.

1958 ford ranch wagon

1958 Ford Ranch Wagon

Ford Motor Company Station Wagons

When we talk about 1950's automobiles we tend to to look at the coolest looking vehicles. Much of this is probably the fact that 1950's designs were quite different than anything before them. The story of the tail fins with the latter 1950's models is a good example.

When it comes to station wagons the primary goal was to make a vehicle that could transport perhaps six to eight passengers. Style was important and the automakers did their best to carry over design changes as much as possible.

Ford Motor has a long background in the station wagon market. The first was the 1929 Ford Wagon. The first wagon that Ford built that was totally in-house was a 1937 model. These were wood trimmed mostly commercial vehicles. By the 1950's Ford reverted to the all steel body for their wagons, the last with any real wood ended in 1952. After that model year Ford Motor Company still produced wagons that had a simulated wood trim using exterior wood decals which were actually still framed with genuine wood. This stopped however in 1953.

ford ranch station wagonFord Ranch Wagon Long Production Run

Ford Motor Company produced the Ranch Wagon from 1952 to 1974. A very impressive twenty-two year run. During this production run the Ford Ranch Wagon was a full size vehicle with the exception of 1963 and 64 where it was an intermediate model. Whwen changes were made with 1952 Ford wood wagons two new wagon models were introduced. These were the Country Sedan, a four-door model in the mid-range Customline series; and the Ranch Wagon. After receiving cosmetic changes for 1953, a second Ranch Wagon model, a fancier version in the Customline series, was added for the 1954 model year.

Standard equipment on all Ranch Wagons included a one-hand, easy-opening tailgate that was a full foot wider than anything produced by the competition. Also, 97 cubic feet of luggage area with the rear seats folded, providing a luggage area that was about 101/2 feet long with the tailgate down, and was 62.8 inches wide at its widest point inside. Deluxe interior included standard foam padding for the front bench seat, along with vinyl and woven plastic upholstery.

In the late 1950s, Ford Motor Company completely restyled its lineup to compete with the offerings from General Motors.

For the 1957 and 1958 model year Ford Motor also offered the Del Rio Ranch Wagon. Buyers of the Del Rio wagon had the option of a two tone paint scheme, four way power seats and a better quality interior. The Del Rio also had the two piece tailgate which was utilized on all Ford wagons. The Del Rio was a sports wagon but was discontinued after 1958 with only a bit over 12,000 units sold.

The 1959 model year for Ford Station Wagons saw the nine-passenger Country Squire  rated above the six- or nine-passenger, four-door Country Sedan wagons and the six-passenger, two-door Country Sedan wagon and two- or four-door Ranch Wagons.

1958 Ford Two Door Ranch Wagon Specifications

The 1958 Ford Two Door Ranch Wagon was available with either a 223 Inline Six or a 331 cubic inch V-8. The six delivered 140 horsepower and the V-8 produced 240.

Brakes are four wheel hydraulic drum.

Front suspension has independent coil springs and the rear are longitudinal leaf springs.

Vehicle dimensions include a wheelbase of 118.0 inches...overall length of 202.7 inches...width of 78.0 inches...height of 58.6 inches.

Regarding production numbers for 1958 Ford Wagons, total station wagon production totaled 184,600 vehicles. Out of that amount, 34,575 were two door Ranch Wagons and 32,850 were four door Ranch Wagons. The highest production wagon was the Country Squire four door at 68,750 units.

For those wanting to decode 1958 Ford automobiles, the following website is very helpful for decoding that years serial numbers....http://www.theclassicford.com/1958_Ford_ID_numbers.htm

Check out these additional Auto Museum Online articles...

The 1955 Chevrolet Nomad Wagon

1964 AMC Rambler Ambassador Wagon

Ford Ranch Wagon Collector Vehicles

1950's ford station wagonsStation wagons are generally not hot topics within the car collector community. On the flip side, if you're fortunate enough to come across a late 1950's Ford Wagon in reasonably good condition it might be a good buy. You may be able to find a good buy in the teens and certainly under $20,000 for an unrestored model.

As always, the price will and should reflect condition and mileage plus originality. If the wagon has been fully restored you could be looking at anywhere from $40,000 plus to the $80,000 range.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)

1957 Chevy 210 Station Wagon / Specs, Photos, History

Chevrolet's 1957 models were and still are very popular automobiles and are often referred to as 1950's icons. They were statements at the time of a new modern design. The 57 Chevy 210 Station Wagon featured in this article is a real beauty. Those famous 1957 Chevy tail fins add to the great look of this vehicle. These cars were noted for their sporty and stylish look. It was during these Tri_Five Years (1955-1957) where Chevrolet made major design changes and gave both Ford and Chrysler a real run for their money. In 1955 Chevy outsold Ford by a quarter million vehicles.

Three models of Chevrolet automobiles were offered for 1957. These were the top of the line Bel Air...the mid range 210 and the lower trim 150.

1957 chevy station wagon

1957 Chevy Station Wagon

1955 Chevrolet Design

All of this began with the all new design of the 1955 Chevrolet whose design team was led by GM's legendary Harley Earl. This was an all new look for Chevrolet. Gone was the bulbous hood sitting between two wide fenders. Essentially, rounded lines were replaced with a straighter flatter look.

Visibility was improved with a wider windshield. Ventilation was improved greatly and air conditioning could be enjoyed for the first time as an option. 1955 was also the first year of a 12 volt electrical system. Each year during the 1955-1957 run the design was reskinned but the general design remained the same with flatter straighter lines. A good example are the famous fins put on the 1957 models.

Several Station Wagons Available for 1957`

Chevrolet actually produced several varieties of station wagons for the 1957 model year. These included the two-door station wagon (with a sloped pillar behind the hardtop door and sliding windows at the rear seat) Nomad, the four-door, six-passenger station wagon, and the four-door, nine-passenger station wagon.

tri-five chevy cars

All new styling that began with the 1955 model. The 57 Chevy is part of the famous Tri-Five Chevys

Color combinations for the 1957 Chevy Wagons were ivory and charcoal, beige and copper, two tone green.

The Chevy design team for 1957 added an egg crate anodized grille to the 210 model and a gold anodized grille for the Bel Air.

1957 Chevrolet Station Wagon Specifications

There were three Chevy engine options available for 1957 but several additional configurations could boost horsepower significantly. The three engines were the 235 cubic inch Inline Six, the 265 cubic inch V-8 and the new 283 cubic inch V-8.

Horsepower varied greatly depending on add-ons. The 235 was rated at 140 HP, the 265 at 162 HP. The new 283 could be had in several Turbo configurations with top horsepower rated at 283. This top horsepower was accomplished with fuel injection. Many would say that this Rochester fuel injected 283 made the car a hot rod right off of the assembly line. This configuration came with a manual gear box only.

Four transmissions were offered for 1957. These included three speed Synchromesh manuals, one with overdrive. Automatics included a two speed Powerglide and a Turboglide variable speed.

Brakes were four wheel hydraulic drum.

Front suspension was independent coil springs with rear being longitudinal leaf springs.

Dimensions for the 57 Chevy Wagon included a wheelbase of 115.0 inches...overall length 200.0 inches, height 60.5 inches, width 70.9 inches. Weight averaged about 3.425 lbs.

New car base price for the 1957 210 wagon was about $2,400.

Production numbers for 1957 Chevrolet Station Wagons were 14,800 for the 150 trim...166,500 for all of the 210 variations and 33,500 for the two Bel Air models.

You may also enjoy the additional Auto Museum Online articles found on the links below...

The Popular 1955 Chevy Nomad Station Wagon

Car Fin Styling of the 1950's

The 1958 Chevy Impala Convertible

References for this article include GM Archives and Complete Book of Collectible Cars.

1957 Chevrolet Station Wagon Collector Values and Popularity

The 1955-57 Chevys, those of the Tri-Five Years, are among the top collector automobiles from the 1950's. The 1957 model in our estimation the most popular.

chevy 210 station wagon specifications

Great styling and those famous 57 Chevy fins

Chevrolet station wagons in 1957 came in the 150, 210 and Bel Air trims. As of this writing, the top value range, according to several sources, are as follows...the Chevy 150 range is about $22,000 -$32,000. The 210 model about $24,000 to $35,000 depending on exact model, and the top of the line Bel Air about $27,000 to $40,000. The 210 wagon generally would cost you less than the Bel Air but gives you essentially the great 57 styling. The 57 Nomad is valued significantly higher at about $60,000 to $80,000 plus. Again, the aforementioned values are for fully restored top condition and/or show cars.

The Tri-Five Years were great one's for Chevrolet and made their cars icons for the decade of the 50's. When 1958 came around, the Chevy was completely redesigned and looked closer to a Cadillac than it did to a 57 Chevy. The year 1957 was also the last year for the popular Chevy Nomad Station Wagon.

(Article and photos copyright 2016 Auto Museum Online)

1951 Willys Station Wagon / Photos Specs Model History

Willys-Ovcerland, then Willys Jeep, produced station wagons from 1946 to 1964. It's interesting to note that some regarded the Willys Wagon or Station Wagon as more of a truck than a car. The vehicle featured in this article is a finely restored 1951 Willys Station Wagon.

1951 willys station agon

1951 Willys Station Wagon

The Willys Station Wagon was introduced by Willys-Overland in 1946, the same year in which it introduced the Universal CJ Series. The CJ Series was the Jeep built for civilian use.

The Jeep Station Wagon Design

The Willys Wagon, also called Station Wagon, has the distinction of being the first all steel station wagon by at least three years. It was also the first all steel mass produced station wagon. The all steel construction made production a bit easier. The design was unique, not only the all steel construction but also because the Willys Wagon had a front end that resembled the wartime military jeep.

The Willys Jeep Station Wagon was designed by Brooks Stevens. In 1944 Stevens and others formed the Industrial Designers Society of America. Brooks Stevens not only designed automobiles but also kitchen appliances, architecture and even the Miller Brewing logo.

The Willys Station Wagon could carry seven people. The vehicle was given the nickname by some, including James D. Mooney, president and board chairman of Willys-Overland Motors, as  “The Peoples Car”. The vehicle also gained a reputation as a safe vehicle that was relatively easy to maintain. Some referred to the Willys Station Wagon as a Jeep of another name.

willys wagonsOver it's nearly twenty year production run, the Willys Wagon went through many changes, some significant, others not. Significant changes to the design and engine were instituted in 1950. These included a modified grille that was made to form a pointed “V” in the center, with 5 horizontal bars added to the 9 vertical ribs. The changes in available engines in 1950 included an F-134 Hurricane for the 473 model, and a new 161 cu in (2.6L) version of the Lightning six for the 673 model. For the 1950 model year Willys added another model to the lineup with it's new Sedan Delivery version.

The Willys Wagons had inline four cylinder engines through 1947 but upgraded to an inline six beginning with the 1948 model year. In general, it could be said that the Willlys Wagons were underpowered considering their weight and size.

Changes of Ownership

Willys went through several ownership changes during the 1950's and 1960's. In 1963 the company was called the Kaiser-Jeep Corporation. In 1970 the company was then sold to the American Motors Corporation. Willys eventually moved from the United States to Brazil, where it was engaged in the production of jeeps until 1983. Jeep finally ended up being a part of the Chrysler Corporation where it resides today and of course is quite popular.

1952 Willys Station Wagon Specifications

In the ' 50s and ' 60s years of production Willys several times changed its owner and eventually moved from the United States to Brazil, where she was engaged in the production of jeeps until 1983.

1952 Willys Station Wagon Specifications

Just as in previous years, the Willys station wagon had a selection of different engines for the 1952 model year. These included an F6-161 Hurricane and an F 4-134 Hurricane. The F 4-134's were also used with the Jeep CJ series. The Hurricane engine had it's beginnings back with the Go-Devil Flathead engine.

willys wagon dashboardTransmissions available were three and four speed manuals.

Brakes were four wheel drum.

Dimensions included an overall length of 176.3 inches and a wheelbase of 104.0 inches. The 1952 Willys Wagon weighed 2,900 lbs.

See the Auto Museum Online articles on the links below...

Classic Military Vehicles / Specs and Photos

The Willys MB

VIN's and Serial Numbers / What They Tell Us

1950 Chevy 3100 Half Ton Pickup


Willys Station Wagons as Collector Cars

Willys has several models that have gained popularity among car collectors. The Jeeps of course have a solid following and strict passenger cars were a part of Willys' past. The Willys Station Wagons such as the one featured in this article has gained collector popularity as years passed.

willys hurrican engine

This Willys has a 350 Cubic Inch V-8

Willys Wagons over their long production run came in a variety of styles. The older wagons such as those of the early 50's have been rising in value. For the collector, the trick has been finding one that hasn't been mauled. Finding originality is the challenge. Like most other collectible vehicles, the more original and the more restored Willys Station Wagons will fetch the higher price.

For some sample values, as of this writing we see a 53 Willys Utility Wagon, excellent condition and rust free, priced at $23,500. Also, a 1952 fully restored in show condition for $36,000 and a restored 1951 model with a $24,900 asking price.

(Article and photos copyright 2015 Auto Museum Online)