Cheap Flyte: 1953 Nash Ambassador Airflyte

042116 Barn Finds - 1953 Nash Ambassador Airflyte - 1

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Thanks to Stuart F. for sending in this find! This is a 1953 Nash Ambassador Airflyte and it’s in Foley, Minnesota; a little over an hour northwest of Minneapolis. This solid car is listed on eBay with almost 30 bids and yet the current bid price is just a bit over $700. A heck of a deal, as they say in Minnesota.

042116 Barn Finds - 1953 Nash Ambassador Airflyte - 2

The Ambassador was restyled for the last time by Pininfarina of Italy. It’s a polarizing design; there are those who don’t like it and then there are people like myself who absolutely love it.

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This car looks rock-solid, and the owner mentions that the floors are “rock-solid” but that there is some rust-through in the bottoms of the doors and the spare tire well in the trunk.

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There are 74,000 miles on this car but only 13,000 on a freshly-rebuilt engine. This is a column-mounted 3-speed manual with overdrive car so it’ll be smooth when you drive it to the central divisional meet in Hartford, Wisconsin.

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This is a Super-Jetfire six with around 120 hp. The engine has been rebuilt and apparently there is a slight exhaust leak at the manifold. The seller is including a new gasket to keep it quiet in there. There is also a new master cylinder to make sure that this 3,500 pound car stops. Nash was proud of a feature that only they and Rolls-Royce had, “a 100% counter balanced 7-bearing crankshaft.”

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A “Custom” upgrade would have included two-tone seats and a clock, which this “Super” doesn’t have. The seller says that the interior is complete but it’ll need to be redone in a few areas unless you’re going for a survivor status, or partial-survivor status since it has a rebuilt engine. The rear looks about the same so be prepared to spend some money on the interior. This looks like a very solid car and it would be a great project. I have no doubt that any of the Barn Finds readers could whip this Airflyte in shape in no time and you would have a super unique car. Do any of you like these unique Nash designs as much as I do?

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  1. Mark S

    The only thing I don’t like about the Nash autos is the skirted look of the front fender. If this was mine I’d rework the front fender to give a more conventional look. I know I know that there are some of you out there that thinking is this guy nuts, and that might be partly true. The thing is, that skirted look is ugly when you see it on a front well and kills the styling of the rest of the car. This is one mans opinion feel free to appose my opinion. Cheers.

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  2. erikj

    I guess I agree, but what a nice car . I,m sure it will sell for much more. We all know how ebay works in the end.

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  3. 67 GT fastback

    I was always thought the attraction was a lot to with the skirted front well along with all the other ahead of their time? Weird stuff they had going on . I dig it . Wish I could find one in Aus that wasn’t ludicrously expensive

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  4. wagon master

    A real nice one just sold here in Socal for $11,000.

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  5. 60 triumph

    Interesting. Looks like the car is wet to get the shine. I wonder what it is like dry.

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  6. jhumason

    I wouldn’t ordinarily consider one of these, but… I have a mid-’80s Toyota pickup that I love, but which rust has nearly killed (aided by a wandering deer a few weeks ago.) I started looking at older cars with the same wheelbase as my truck, with the idea that I could drop a different body on my truck frame. The Nash Airflyte is one that matches. Hmmm…

    PS: The skirted look is one of the attractions for me. It’s just another lumpy ’50s car otherwise.

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  7. David G

    Something nicely different, that’s for sure. Nice unmolested honest condition which is a fine way to buy one, especially if you’re a handy DIYer. Sexy and lovely hood ornament, one of the best i’ve seen on a ‘normal production’ car…

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  8. Robert A Antonelli

    Great condition.For the guy that thinks the front wheel wells should be open,the 1955 Ambassador had open wells.It is basically the same car with refreshed front end.Being an old Nash guy I had a 52 statesman
    A ND the moved up to a 1957 Ambassador super Country Club 2 dr. hardtop.That car was fast.It had the Nash 327 v8.Loved that car.

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