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Lot 131

1948 Ford Super Deluxe Station Wagon

  • Chassis no. 899A2078532

Sold for $115,500

Model 89A. 100 bhp, 239.4 cu. in. Flathead V8 engine, three-speed manual transmission with Columbia rear end, solid front axle and live rear axle with transverse semi-elliptic leaf springs, four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 114"

As 1947 drew to a close, Ford was racing to complete development of the new 1949 models, scheduled for introduction in June 1948. Thus the 1948 model year was started early, in October of ’47. The cars, however, scarcely looked different from the year before. The model number advanced to 89A and the chassis numbers changed their prefix accordingly, but the most visible change was found inside.

Since 1932, Ford had used a coincidental ignition lock on the steering column. A key lock operated a bolt that locked the steering wheel. When the bolt was retracted, a toggle switch could then be used to turn on the ignition. The starter was operated by a button on the floor, or, from 1937, on the dashboard. The configuration of the lock cylinder, bolt and toggle switch varied over the years, but the principle remained the same. At the start of the 1948 model year, however, with the exception of some Sportsman convertibles, the configuration was changed. The toggle switch disappeared, and the ignition was switched by the key itself. In 1949, the key switch would move to the dashboard, and the steering wheel lock would disappear.

Purchased new by the American Red Cross on November 24, 1947 at Fox Motor Co. Waynesburg, PA this early 1948 Ford Station Wagon was seldom used but meticulously maintained. Service records indicate that by late 1956 it had only 10,794 miles. In about 1961 it was acquired by Orville Dayton who continued maintaining the car at the same garage that had cared for it since new. By June 1990 service records indicate the car had 17,455 miles. Mark Toomey of Cohasset Massachusetts purchased the low mileage station wagon from Orville and added little mileage as title records show 17,822 in June 2004, before Nick purchased it in 2006.

The car has 100% Henry Ford Maple with original Mahogany panels beautifully varnished by Nick’s wood shop. The doors shut well and exhibit even gaps. The body contours are excellent, and the Monsoon Maroon paint has a deep shine. The incredible level of care given to this Ford is further evidenced by the roof, which retains its original brown artificial leather.

The brightwork is mostly original, and with some scratches and tarnish. Originality is also evident in the running board rubber and rear fender stone guards are original rubber. In fact, the glass is all original, with Ford script, but there is minor separation of some panes.

The brown artificial leather seats show some wear, the front has lap belts for two, and there are new black rubber floor mats, front and rear. The dashboard has perfect original maple woodgrain. The dashboard plastic is in good condition, but is of the red-accented 1946 style, complemented by an original steering wheel. The car has a heater, windshield pillar spotlight and working electric clock..

The 59AB engine is original and clean, but shows use. Similarly, the chassis and underbody are unrestored and show much surface rust, although they are otherwise clean. The car has a new exhaust system and the tires are Goodyear 6.50-16 blackwalls. A spare is tailgate-mounted, under a metal cover.

Now showing slightly more than 19,000 miles, this ’48 station wagon runs and drives well, the Columbia rear axle enabling effortless freeway travel. It received a Rouge Award for preservation from the Early Ford V8 Club at Temecula, California, in 2007. Currently registered in California with year-of-manufacture plates 23F729, which go with the car, it is a very early 1948 model, built in October 1947.


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Alexander Weaver

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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

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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

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Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

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

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Gord Duff

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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

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

Michael Squire

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Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

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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

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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

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