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Lot 349
1949 Hudson Commodore 8 Convertible


Selling on Friday

From The Rockhound Collection

CHASSIS NO: 49265553

• 1 of only 595 Hudson convertibles built in 1949
• Highly original car
• Believed to have just under 20,000 original miles
• Full-sized comfort with overdrive

254 cid inline eight-cylinder engine, 128 HP, three-speed manual transmission with overdrive, front independent suspension with coil springs, rear live axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, four-wheel drum brakes, rear-wheel drive; wheelbase: 124”

Introduced to the public and stunning the eager automotive world in 1947, Hudson introduced its new “step-down” unibody sedans which were much more aerodynamic and faster on the straights, as well as far more aesthetically pleasing. The newly designed line of cars was offered as a Super Six and Super Eight, and as a higher-end Commodore Six and Commodore Eight. Hudson’s ‘Step-Down’ cars for 1948 marked a new direction for the company. The partially unitary design placed the floor pan on the bottom of the frame rather than the top, making one literally step down to enter a Hudson. There was an all-new six-cylinder engine, but the legacy straight-eight, which was continually being updated since its introduction in the 1930s, was still carried over. Its low center of gravity made for excellent handling, for which Step-Downs are still revered. Technicians within the industry were aware for years that the lower a car could be built, the better it would ride and handle; with these considerations, it certainly contributed to being a safer automobile. In period, you could instantly see that the Hudson was the lowest American car built; this was done without sacrificing road clearance or headroom. The car hugged the road tenaciously and was regarded as America’s best-riding and safest car. The distinctive beauty of its free-flowing, artistic lines was admired then as now.

Revolutionary at the time, they proved to be successful the next year in NASCAR stock car racing. Sales reached a peak of nearly 145,000 units in 1950, but it was a downhill slide from that point on. Hudson merged with Nash-Kelvinator in 1954 to form American Motors and production was transferred from Detroit to Kenosha, Wisconsin. Ironically, both the Hudson and Nash names were gone by 1957 as the firm concentrated on compact cars under the Rambler label.

Hailed as Hudson’s top model for the year, this 1949 Commodore 8 Convertible was also the owner of The Rockhound Collection's favorite car. “It’s a car that carries all the classic features as well as full-sized comfort. Long and low to the ground, it handles great and can be thoroughly enjoyed in any setting, top up or down!” A largely original car with only one repaint in its 70-year history, it stands as one of a few surviving examples since just 596 were originally produced in 1949. A seldom-seen rolling time capsule, its Jersey Blue (JC) exterior presents very well and merges nicely with the red leather interior, especially when the top is down, and the boot cover is equipped. Not only is the 254-cubic-inch inline eight-cylinder engine in running order, but this Hudson also comes with an array of options that include remotely operated spotlights, dual fog lights, a power top, power brakes, power steering, full-power windows and overdrive for when higher speeds are desired. The odometer shows just under 20,000 miles, which are believed to be accurate and follow suit with the condition of the vehicle, but mileage is still shown as exempt.

It is a rare, largely original example of Hudson’s quality, performance and driving qualities wrapped into one fine example. This Hudson Commodore 8 with praised driving abilities is set to satisfy its next owner and give them many more memories on the road like it did for The Rockhound Collection countless times.

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