Garage Find: 1948 Crosley Station Wagon

The seller has this 1948 Crosley Station Wagon listed as a “panel”, but there wouldn’t have been windows on the sides so I think it’s one of 23,489 Crosley wagons made in 1948. This small hauler can be found here on eBay with a $5,300 buy it now price or you can make an offer. It’s located in Terre Haute, Indiana.

This is a late-1948 Crosley CC model as you can tell from the parking lights being visible on the bottom of the headlights. The parking lights were housed in the headlights until late-1948. The CC models were made in 1946, 1947, and 1948 in several body styles. A panel wagon would be very cool and also very rare. Unless someone cut windows into a panel wagon, this is a regular station wagon and believe it or not, in 1948 Crosley made more wagons than any car maker on the planet. You can see the sliding rear side windows in the first photo so there is no question that this is a station wagon and not a panel wagon. Bummer, but it’s still cool as heck and black over red is even better, in my opinion.

This example is cool because it’s a wagon and it’s black. I don’t know if the original color would have been black and it’s impossible to tell since there are no photos other than the four shown here and one of what appears to be the interior, I think (?), taken through the glass. I get it, it’s crammed in there but what happens if or when someone buys it? It’ll have to be pulled out of there at that time, why not get it out of there now and take good photos of it which surely would help it to sell easier and quicker?

The seller’s listing is as follows: “Its original. Somewhere right around 20k miles If I recall. Its sorta buried in the garage. 6vdc reverses polarity. Has ran in past 5 years. Fuel tank rusted out, have replacement, could use some electrical rewired under the hood and a battery and should run. Rare car.” The station wagon may be among the least rare Crosley models for 1948 but they are still rare cars overall and very desirable for those of us who love these small, American cars. This one should have Crosley’s famous CoBra (Copper Braised) 44 cubic-inch four-cylinder with 26.5 hp. Crosleys were meant to be second cars in a post-WWII car-starved country. Are there any Crosley fans out there?

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  1. Andy

    As I recall, the CoBra engine was underengineered and prone to holes in the cylinder walls, so this says LS swap to me. Or at least, say, a late model Moto Guzzi engine/tranny.

    Like 1
    • duaney

      99% of these were converted to the cast iron block, so should be no issues. While not breathtakingly fast as an original car, at car shows and car events, original Crosleys generate endless conversation and interest. Overhead cam engine in 1948! Keep it original.

      Like 1
      • Beatnik Bedouin

        Andy, the CoBra engine was originally designed for military use and really wasn’t suitable for an automotive application, due to it being prone to rot. What Duaney posted is correct.

        I knew the engine’s designer, Lloyd Taylor, who continued to experiment with ‘brazed sheetmetal’ well into the 1970s. Interesting guy with a heck of a lot of engineering knowledge.

        Like 1
  2. Wrong Way

    I love these Crosleys! I also love the Morris! One day I will get one or one of each!

    Like 1
  3. Bill Wilkman

    I agree that the seller should get the car out into daylight and take lots of pictures. I can’t imagine any sane person buying this car based on the wholly inadequate photos.

    Like 2
  4. Martha Straube

    The original CoBra motors seldom made it over 10 – 12k miles, due to the electrolysis issue. Doubt it is one. Most likely cast iron.

    Like 0

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