Desert Find: $3,900 1959 Ford Ranch Wagon

The Ranch Wagon was Ford’s first all-steel-bodied wagon in 1952 after the “Woodie” phase of wagon production had come to an end. Simpler in trim and amenities compared to the Country Squire, the Ranch Wagon would remain a Ford staple through 1974. This example from 1959 has been sitting for years and isn’t in running condition. It will require both mechanical and cosmetic attention before it can start transporting people and goods once again. Located in El Paso, Texas, this wagon is available here on eBay for the Buy It Now price of $3,900 OBO. Another great tip from Larry D!

Ford redesigned their line-up for 1952 and the wood-based wagon was gone. For buyers who still wanted the look, the Country Squire wore simulated exterior wood decals which were framed in genuine wood for the first couple of years. If you didn’t care about wood, you could have bought either the Country Sedan or Ranch Wagon, with either four or two doors, respectively. While the name of the 4-door version would change over the year, the Ranch Wagon stuck with as few doors as possible and was the price leader among Ford wagons.

Six-passenger Ranch Wagon production for 1959 was more than 45,000 units, including the seller’s edition which has spent much of its life in the deserts of New Mexico. It has a non-functioning inline-six under the hood, which should be a 223 cubic inch engine good for 145 hp when running properly. As your basic wagon, the shifting of gears is handled by the trusty 3-on-the-tree manual transmission set up. There is no mention of what it might take to get the old girl going again other than adding coolant and a radiator cap.

Even though this wagon is more than 60 years old, it’s still wearing most of its original paint. The right-side door has been replaced, explaining the differences in color and the seller thinks the right front fender also might not be original to the car either. There is rust brewing in the driver’s side rocker panel and door bottom and a few dents and dings are present in the sheet metal and chrome pieces. Rust is also present on the floor pans and it may go deeper than surface corrosion. If you try to raise the window in the tailgate, you’ll find that it’s missing (the glass, that is, not the gate).

Hagerty pegs the resale value of a ’59 Ranch Wagon at $7,700 in Fair condition and the nicest one on the planet might fetch in the mid-$20,000s. If you’re looking for a 1950s wagon to restore and don’t have the funds to go after a Ford Parklane or Chevy Nomad, why not fix this one up instead?

Fast Finds


  1. Blyndgesser

    If the old Mileage Maker six isn’t repairable, this would make a great platform for a restomod with a Windsor stroker and a Tremec.

    Like 7
    • ADM

      We had a 1960 wagon, in a medium green, with the same engine. My father sold it, still in good shape. I like the ’60 styling, and think about that car done up, as you described.

      • DON

        My dad had a medium green one was well ; I came home from the hospital in it – My dad was an electronics salesman ,so he always bought new base 2 door wagons when they were available . I know he had a 53, 55, 57 , 59 and a 60, after that it was base 4 door sedans. My mother always called any station wagon a Ranch Wagon

        Like 1
  2. Will Fox

    While fairly basic, this would be a fun project to restore and use for old car swap meets, etc. The interior will need a rubber floor mat, and the inner door panels replaced along with a new steering wheel. A somewhat inexpensive project that won’t hit 7 digits.

    Like 5
  3. Steve Clinton

    “It has a non-functioning inline-six under the hood” “get the old girl going again other than adding coolant and a radiator cap.”

    Say WHAT?

    Like 1
  4. karl j holquist

    Its a cream puff!!

    • Steve Clinton

      What bakery do YOU shop at? LOL

  5. smokeymotors

    Looks like someone used a bucket loader to lift it for the underneath shot, wonder if the doors still close or open after the stress, two door makes it worth a full restore, keep the six, dual carbs and a header, mod the air cleaner for two carbs.

    Like 6
  6. sir mike

    Love Ford wagons,,,especially 2drs.

  7. karl j holquist

    The lost wagon of the 60s and 70s and 80s miss the ride with 8-9 people and maybe a few 40 oz. for the non-driving. High school with a wagon or a club wagon van will due nicely. Those were the days

  8. 370zpp

    At the very least, would make a great movie prop.

    Like 1
  9. MLM

    I find the ’59 Fords attractive regardless of the body style. I hope somebody put this classic back on the road.

    Like 1

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