Amelia Island

9 March 2013

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Lot 189

1949 Ford V-8 Custom Station Wagon

  • Chassis no. 98BA-694803

Sold for $49,500


100 hp, 226 cu. in. OHV L-head “flathead” V-8 engine, three-speed manual transmission, independent front suspension with coil springs, wishbone-type longitudinally-mounted rear spring suspension, and four-wheel drum brakes. Wheelbase: 114 in.

  • Handsome combination of Midland Maroon Metallic over tan
  • Flathead V-8 performance with excellent parts availability
  • Older restoration that presents nicely and drives well
  • Perfect entrée into the world of woodies


In the quest to see who among the Big Three would be first to get their all-new post-war car to market, Ford Motor Company won the race in 1949. The company had its 1949 models in production and ready for the public by June 1948, beating Chevrolet by six months and Plymouth by nine months. Ford was rewarded with the claim of America’s number one auto manufacturer, with a production increase of over 300 percent from 1948 and an extended 16-month selling period.



So visually striking were the new slab-sided bodies with flush-mounted fenders, the 1949 models were fondly nicknamed “shoebox” Fords. Despite the nomenclature, the new cars were easily the most modern looking of the Big Three low-priced cars for 1949, and the public responded accordingly, with 31,412 deliveries of the new wagon.



With its new wagon, Ford set about simplifying the ownership of a traditional wood wagon. The new car featured an all-steel structure that virtually stopped the typical squeaking and much of the wind noise associated with a wood-bodied car. The design was much less complicated, with bolt-on, replaceable wood panels.



Until this time, all Ford wagons used solid maple framing, but the 1949’s framing was steel-covered, with paneling that was created by using the latest in electronic technology. Remarkably, the parts were created by using a microwave bonding process that squeezed a mixture of phenolic resin-coated wood pieces together to form a frame blank. Similarly, the panels were crafted by a layer of maple over an inner layer of ash. The roof, too, was now made from steel, and Ford offered the wagon in its higher-priced Custom series, but only as a two-door from 1949 to 1951.



Painted Midland Maroon Metallic over a dark tan interior, this workmanlike woodie was restored in Oklahoma approximately 15 years ago and has been in its current owner’s collection for the last six years. He describes it as a nicely presented car that drives nicely and has proper underhood detailing commensurate with its age. Offering sprightly V-8 performance, readily available mechanical parts, and classic “shoebox” styling, this is the perfect entrée into the wonderful world of woodies!

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

aweaver@rmsothebys.com

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

bruprecht@rmsothebys.com

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 9... read more

David Swig

dswig@rmsothebys.com

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. He is a life-long automobile enthusiast and ... read more

Don Rose

drose@rmsothebys.com

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

dgould@rmsothebys.com

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

gduff@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Ian Kelleher

ikelleher@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Ian Kelleher began his automotive career immediately following his graduation from Oberlin College with a Bachelor of Arts in Politica... read more

Jake Auerbach

jauerbach@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Jonathan Sierakowski

jonathan@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Jonathan Sierakowski developed a passion for classic cars while working at a Connecticut restoration shop as a teenager. He graduated with a... read more

Kurt Forry

kforry@rmsothebys.com

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

mmalamut@rmsothebys.com

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

msquire@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

ocamelin@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

pdarvill@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

pfisher@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. He att... read more

Peter Wallman

pwallman@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Peter Wallman joined RM Europe in 2007 following nearly two decades in the international advertising industry, where he was based out ... read more

Shelby Myers

smyers@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

tvandervelden@rmsothebys.com

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more