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Gotta have this car!


Den41Buick
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I am a pre-war classic car guy. At car shows I rarely ever look at post-war cars. I came across this 1948 Nash Woodie at a car museum. I am in love with it. I am not sure what caught me, but I would love to have this in my garage. The red color caught my attention, but the wood craftsmanship was beautiful. I must admit I like the plaid interior as well. It works for this car for some reason.  I am not sure how well a 6 cylinder engine powers this car. I would have thought an 8 was used. If anyone has more information or experience with this or a similar model, I would love to hear your thoughts. Enjoy the pictures!

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Hello Den, you are in love with one of the rarest of all production woodies. They were called the Ambassador Suburban. There were 272 made in 1946, 595 made in 1947, and 130 made in 1948. The engine was a 234 cubic inch 112 horsepower straight six. No eight cylinder engine was available. My reference book, Encyclopedia of American Cars From 1930 on, claims only 10-15 survive. Like the Ford/Mercury Sportsman and the Chrysler Town and Country, these were flashy, expensive, low production cars intended to draw attention to the warmed over pre war "new models" these companies were offering. Sportsman and Town & Countries are rare but not as rare as the Ambassador. Restored  Sportsman and Town & Countries can sell for over $100,000. Some Town & Countries had plaid interiors and were available in convertible coupe and 4 door sedan body styles. 

     I have a 1940 Lasalle woodie station wagon. I am more taken with the 1940 Cadillac convertible sedan in the background than the Nash. The Nash is cool but if I had a choice....

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I had one of these way back in the early 1980's. It was dark blue and all original. The interior on mine was original and was leather - not plaid.

Also, the luggage rack is not original. The one on this car looks like one from a Town & Country Sedan

The wood was not structural as it was screwed to the metal "skeleton" of the car - doors, trunk, etc.

My car needed to be restored (it was very rusted because it came from New Hampshire) and I couldn't do it justice so I sold it to a friend that was advertising a "wanted" ad for one in Hemmings for years.

I believe he still has it and it is in the same condition as when I sold it along with a parts car,too.

That's another one I wish I had kept...........

 

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Hello Tom,

The sign on the floor did not have the information you provided. Did this car have a different engine than other Nash vehicles this year? Looks like a OHV was in the car. 

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Nash 600 had an 82 horsepower 6 and the Ambassador had the 112 horsepower 6. Nash, Chevrolet, and Buick had overhead valve engines. 

 

Joe, I did not know the wood on the Nash Suburban was not structural. That is interesting. Like a 1949-51 Ford woodie. 

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"Joe, I did not know the wood on the Nash Suburban was not structural. That is interesting. Like a 1949-51 Ford woodie."

 

Yessir, Even the trunklid was a metal "skeleton" with no structural wood. How do I know?

I removed every piece of wood from the one I used to own to refinish it. 

They were kind of like the 48-50 Packard Station Sedans, which I had one,too, and the Ford Sportsman in that the doors, trunklid (Sportsman) and rear quarter sections did not have the metal "skin" on them, just the braces, etc. All of the wood was screwed onto these sections taking the place of the metal "skin". However, the Packards tailgate and rear pillars were structural.

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A couple of Nash Suburban Ambassadors have been sold recently, both by RM Auctions. The car pictured, with the roof rack going for $126,000 and the second car went for $86,000. Both cars were maroon, but the quality in the restoration was the difference in the prices.

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2 hours ago, 46 woodie said:

A couple of Nash Suburban Ambassadors have been sold recently, both by RM Auctions. The car pictured, with the roof rack going for $126,000 and the second car went for $86,000. Both cars were maroon, but the quality in the restoration was the difference in the prices.

And I sold mine, with a running/driving parts car, for $1200.00 - way back when, of course

Geeeezzzzz

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Joe, you mentioned the buyer of your Nash still has it and has not restored it. Has your restoration skills and confidence increased since the 80's? Maybe you can buy it back. Or pass the buyer's name on to Den41buick so he can attempt to buy it. 

Edited by Tom Boehm (see edit history)
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