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1949 FORD CUSTOM WOODIE WAGON

350 cu, in, LT-1 Corvette V8 engine

Camaro five-speed manual transmission

 Camaro Z-28 positraction rear end

    S-10 independent front suspension

four-wheel disc brakes

1949 FORD1949 FORD1949 FORD

    The all-new Ford for 1949 was introduced to the American public on June 10, 1948. Potential buyers flocked by the thousands to Ford showrooms and special events all over the nation to view the radical new Ford. It was new in every respect, from the restyled bumpers to the modern taillights, and did not resemble the pre- and post-war Fords in any way. In press releases issued by the company in June 1948, executives touted their new car proudly. "The 1949 Ford, which reveals a radical departure from the traditional Ford styling and engineering, was made public today by the Ford Motor Company. New standards of beauty, comfort, economy and performance in the 1949 Ford passenger cars advance them far ahead of others in the low-priced field," stated. J.R. Davis, Vice President and Director of Sales and Advertising. "Styling of the new Ford definitely long model year establishes it as the car of the year,"

   To develop and produce the 1949 Ford passenger cars Ford Motor Company spent more than $37,000,000 in tools, dies, jigs, and fixtures. Styling of the 1949 Ford was well-received from day one. Accordingly, sales took off and over 1.1 million cars were built during the long model year. It was Ford's strongest year since1930. The station wagon, an entirely new design, came as a two-door rather than a four-door, and also came with nearly all-steel body construction and extensive wood trim.

    Fast forward to the year 1990. Before its transformation, this Woodie Wagon appeared in the movie Loose Cannons starring Gene Hackman and Dan Aykroyd. In the late 1990s, noted woodie street rod builder John Warenuk acquired the Woodie, and applied his skills to make this 1949 Ford station wagon into a modem driving and one-of-a-kind-appearing Custom Woodie. He started by removing all of the original front suspension and adding an S-10 sub-frame and suspension from the cowl forward. Then, for a powerful, reliable, and modem drive train, he selected the venerable LT-1 Corvette engine; a Camaro five-speed transmission was utilized with the bullet-proof Camaro Z-28 positraction rear end. The beautiful and highly-polished 17-inch wheels are from Billet Specialties, adding to the car's subtle custom look. The power-boosted four-wheel disc brakes are Chevrolet as well, and provide excellent stopping capability. Configured in this manner, the car drives and handles like a late model automobile and is truly a pleasure to drive.

The interior is tastefully done in a soft mist grey cloth that is both understated and comfortable. Added amenities include power windows, Vintage air with a heat component, and a Kenwood High Performance Sound System with room for 10 CDs. Not forgotten are the dual six-way power seats, Dakota Digital Dash, Ron Francis wiring, remote entry and windows, Walker radiator, and seat belts. The fit and finish of the wood on this car is outstanding and was done by long-time woodie craftsman Mike Nickels.

Overall, this Woodie drives like a late-model car-if not smoother than some- and has plenty of power and a commanding presence in any grouping of automobiles. It is tastefully thought out, well-constructed, and a highly useable car that will be a pleasure to own, drive, or simply to look at.