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1950 Ford Custom Deluxe Project

The 1949 Ford was the automaker’s first new car since World War II. 1946-48 models were largely rehashed 1942s and just about everything was new about the car but the drivetrain. As the platform would be used for three model years, the 1950 models had minimal changes and sold well. This 1950 Ford Custom Deluxe is a hand-me-down project the seller inherited from his father and restoring this car isn’t his preference. The car is in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and the bidding stands at just $990 so far, here on eBay.

The 1949-51 models were sometimes called the “Shoebox Fords” for their slab-sided, “ponton” design, helping to streamline car design by integrating things like the fenders. The motor was shifted forward to allow for more room in the passenger compartment. Ford’s 239 cubic inch V-8 was a common fixture in these models, rated at 100 hp. These changes enabled Ford to overtake Chevy in terms of sales. Even more so in 1950 when the Crestliner “sports sedan” was added and the Custom became known as the Custom Deluxe. These cars began carrying the now-famous “Ford Crest” which became a staple on Ford cars for many, many years. For 1950, total Ford production was 1.2 million units, with the Custom Deluxe accounting for 800,000 cars and the two-door sedan, like the seller’s, carrying half of the latter. Thank you, Concept Carz, for background info.

This 1950 Ford Custom Deluxe comes with a story, which helps make it for me. The seller’s dad bought the car off the original owner’s family some 20 years ago and it became one of many projects that the gentleman never finished. The car is said to have just 36,000 miles on it, but some motor troubles may have taken it off the road. It was last inspected and registered in 1957 and has been under at least partial cover since then. Between the photos supplied and the seller’s observations, the body looks straight and largely rust-free. That includes the floorboards which appear solid. The paint has had it, the bumpers and grille will need to be re-chromed and the buyer will need to source a hood as it’s missing. The windshield bears some rock marks and one of the windowpanes is cracked.

The interior is original and – if you can sort through the various coverings – we’re told the upholstery is nice because the dealer added some covers when the car was new. The door panels and dash look good, but the headliner is coming loose by the rear window, so it may be the only thing inside needing replacement.

Under the invisible hood resides no engine or transmission. They were pulled at some point but will come with the car along with a second flathead V-8. We’re told the original engine block has bee machined and has new bearings and rings. But the seller isn’t sure is if its all there and what else must be done before putting it all back together.

If you’re looking for a project and like these “shoebox” Fords, this one might not be a bad car to start with. If it can be bought cheap enough, you can use the spread to bring this car up to the going rate for nice originals, which is in the mid-teens. This makes me wonder what other unfinished project cars the seller still has on his hands.


  1. Avatar photo bobhess Member

    Certainly a better project car than the rusty 911 in the neighboring state. Enough engine stuff to build a heated up flathead and have some cruising fun.

    Like 6
  2. Avatar photo Christopher

    Looks like my grandfathers car that was sold to someone in So. California. I almost bought back in the 70’s a convertible version of this car, and passed as it needed to much metal work.

    Like 1
  3. Avatar photo Vince H

    Seller is calling it a coupe which it is not. It is a early 50 since it has 49 style trunk hinges.

    Like 1
  4. Avatar photo ACZ

    You really want a period hot rod? Put a late 50s/early 60s Olds V8 in this car. That was the popular swap back in my day.

    Like 0
  5. Avatar photo Gray Wolf

    First car was a ‘51 Ford via 1963. Lowered the front , reversed the rear shackles, painted wheels moon disc. Took the 1/4 trim off, filled the holes and added ‘49 Ford taillights. Painted rear diff white and put a Dewey Weber sticker on the pumpkin! Hot Dam! Cut the rear x-metal support for rear seat and added a mattress for surf trips and other things!!🙀 That provided us room to slide the boards inside and close the trunk! Yeah, that’s what we told the parents!

    Like 1

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