Honey Of A Hudson: 1937 Terraplane DeLuxe 71 Coupe

061016 Barn Finds - 1937 Hudson Terraplane - 1

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This is a 1937 Terraplane DeLuxe 71 Coupe, what a car! It’s in beautiful Boise, Idaho and is listed on eBay with a current bid price of just under $7,500 and the reserve isn’t met! With no backseat I think this may be a Terraplane DeLuxe 71 Business Coupe, but I’m not 100% positive and there is no mention of the exact model, or a serial number given. Hopefully one of the Barn Finds readers will know how to figure it out by the photos. Both the DeLuxe and the Super series had a 117″ wheelbase and there is a 3-passenger coupe and a 2-passenger business coupe. Only the serial number will tell for sure. I don’t think this is a 3-passenger Victoria Coupe.

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Terraplane was a model that was made by Hudson Motor Car Company, as the majority of you know. They were made for seven short years, between 1932 and 1938. This is the shape of car that has turned me on for decades, the business-coupe-like body style. Most companies made them but there would be something special about a Terraplane, they’re a little more unusual to see than most other makes are.

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Unfortunately, this car has been repainted. “Unfortunately”, at least for me, because it’s always nice to see original cars so you know what you’re dealing with. At least this one hasn’t been turned into a gumball-colored restomod; yet anyway. I hope it never is, it’s a rare car. I’d either leave it as is, other than the interior, or restore it all the way back to original spec; sans white walls. Some folks have done some wacky things with Terraplanes.

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Wow, what an interior! Wait, wow, that seat needs some help! The seller says that it “needs interior redone but everything is there and solid.” There are a few photos and one showing the massive trunk that business coupes had. It does indeed look solid all around this car, inside and out. I’m taking a wild guess that rodent damage cause the missing seat, but that’s just a guess. It’ll be nice to get another one in there, that doesn’t look too comfy. I’m guessing that this red-painted dash would have originally had a gorgeous woodgrain finish.

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This we know for sure is a six-cylinder, which would have been a 212 cubic inch with either 96 or 102 hp depending on the model, DeLuxe or Super. The seller says that the engine “sounds great with no weird knocks or noises.” I would love to just clean this one up, get the mechanical systems working like new, redo the interior, and drive it as it looks here. What would you do with this great looking Terraplane?

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  1. DirtyHarry

    I think it is begging for some lowering. I have some recent “customs” that look like this auto. Dare to be different.

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  2. Glen

    My Grandfather had one of these. It was stolen by the Boyd gang in Toronto. According to the Police, it was a fast car. It was later found in a ditch in Scarborough. It’s all one big city these days.

    Like 0
  3. AllenMember

    I say you’re right. While you’re redoing the interior, that red dashboard cannot be right, can it? Shouldn’t it be a faux wood finish like so many other cars of the period?

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  4. speedo

    Where is the famous “Flying Carrot” hood ornament? The first family car I remember was a 1936 Terraplane 2dr with the lighted orange hood ornament. It had a push button starter and my brothers and I would drive it around on the starter motor!

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    • Tom

      Probably broken off, as many were. It was weak part of the car. I read that when the first Terraplane was christend the ornament was broken 3 times and after cutting the champagne bottle almost all the way through did the bottle break and not the ornament.

      Like 0
  5. HoA Howard AMember

    I too like this era styling. I’d love to know the story on this car. It’s been driven, no doubt, and I can’t quite see the 1st number, either a 0 or 9, but these were meant to be driven from town to town, with salesperson ammo. Brochures, samples. Clearly the person selling it doesn’t know much about it. I never saw the speedo go backwards in American cars before. Did other cars have that? It certainly spent it’s entire working life in a warm climate. I hate to break it to you, Scotty, but there is a 99.967% chance this will turn into a hot rod. It’s that desirable. I guess there’s nothing wrong with that.

    Like 0
  6. Bellingham Fred

    With just one tail light I’d say it is their standard or low end model.

    Like 1
  7. Amicus

    At the Hostetler’s Hudson Collection in Indiana yesterday so pretty sure this is a”Businessman’s Coupe”. No back seat in the original but a long tray that the “Traveller” could slide out with his samples on it.
    ps the collection is an excellent museum with Hudson’s of all descriptions and model lines well maintained and displayed with knowledgeable volunteers who are a font of information. Well worth the visit.

    Like 0
  8. JW454

    I like everything about this one including the drive train. However, if it isn’t capable of 70~75 M.P.H. on the highway, I’d have to do some sort of swap. The requirement for my rides is they have to be highway ready and can go the distance. Regardless of where that is. No trailer queens allowed.
    Nice car.

    Like 2
    • HoA Howard AMember

      Hi JW454, I hear ya’, you don’t want to be holding up traffic. I’m sure there were many OD setups for these cars, and the 6 would surely handle it. Cars like this always look so out of place on interstates. They were meant for 2 lanes at 50 mph.( or less) I too am “anti-trailer queen”. If you can’t drive it, I feel it defeats the purpose of having it in the 1st place.

      Like 2
    • MikeH

      If you want a car that will do 75mph with AC, Bluetooth etc, go buy one. There are lots of good Toyotas and Fusions out there. To me, the point of having an antique auto is to know how it was to drive when the car was built. When you pull the Hudson engine out and drop in a Chevy, the car ceases to be a Hudson. It’s a Chevy with a Hudson body. True, I don’t drive my cars on the freeway, but I enjoy driving them as they were driven when they were built. Original cars are rare, and once they are ruined, they are seldom rescued.

      Like 4
      • Mark S

        I have to agree Mike it would be a real shame to loose that engine to the scrap pile Especially one that runs. As for the speed that this will reach you might be surprised at how fast this Hudson will go. I do however think that when it comes to brakes, upgrades are needs to be able to drive in today’s traffic. As for the interior I’d bag that seat put it in storage and install two nice leather buck seats out of something newer. I’d then finish up the interior to look original. This car has very nice lines no wonder the hotrodders want them.

        Like 1
  9. starsailing

    Great looks and something no one else would have in the neighborhood. By all means make it mechanical sound and take this dog for a walk! Paint up the engine bay and inside of rusty hood….leave the body as is….Hide some kind of radio in trunk and hide speakers under dash…..Plenty of time later to drop in a newer 1954 Twin H Hudson engine….

    Like 2

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