Korean War Orphan: 1949 Hudson Commodore

This old Hudson has spent most of its life in storage and displayed in a museum. It was purchased new in 1949 by a World War II veteran pilot Felix Asla Jr while he was a stationed at March Air Force Base in California. Promoted to Major and Squadron Leader, Major Asla was on his second tour in Korea when on August 1, 1952, his F-86D Sabre was shot down and he was killed. His family stored his Hudson for 50 years before it was sold in 2012. The new owner then donated it to The Northwest Vintage Car & Motorcycle Museum in Brooks, Oregon. They began restoration but then sold it. It’s for sale now and listed on eBay for $12,500 by Jim’s Classic Garage in Gig Harbor, Washington. This Hudson shows only 24,435 miles and the seller says they have the paperwork to prove the mileage is accurate. It runs and drives but is in need of further restoration work.

The museum began sanding the Hudson in preparation for paint. The ad seems to be saying the sellers are going to finish the work for a price to be negotiated.

The interior is what you’d expect after sitting for so long. The door panels have suffered from exposure to moisture and will need to be replaced along with the carpet.

The engine runs and it looks like everything is there. That 254 CID flathead six is good for 128 horsepower. The museum redid the electrical system, so it should be a trouble free driver.

They have provided lots of pictures of the underside of the Hudson on the seller’s website, Jims Classic Garage. The floors look solid and hopefully, the rust on the frame is just on the surface.

Most folks will find this old Hudson overpriced of course. While its history is interesting it doesn’t add to the value. With a little body and interior work, it could be a nice old driver though. Some of us would be proud to display the Major’s history along with this old Hudson. The Korean War is pretty much forgotten as most wars are, but Memorial Day is not all beer and picnics. It’s a day to remember, so raise a glass to Major Asla and all who have sacrificed so much!

Fast Finds


  1. Dan

    Nice ole car, but what’s up with those yellow wheels?….Shew….

    • rdc

      I also like the wheels-not sure why.

    • Michael

      From the factory, wheels we’re painted either red, or yellow only. The color was meant to contrast the exterior paint color.

  2. Mark

    I like the wheel color for some reason.

  3. Hugh

    That’s a 262 cubic inch flathead 6. The 254 was an older design flathead straight 8 with splash oiling.

  4. John C Cargill

    Wheels with a contrasting color were a popular option in the period.

  5. Scotty Staff

    That’s a great, but sad, story – nice find, David!

  6. Rodney

    Think of those wheels as a flashy, bright pair of socks dressing up a dark suit.
    A hint that Felix might have been a fun guy. On this Memorial Day I salute Felix and his socks. Thank you Felix!

  7. Dolphin Member

    A step-down ’49 Hudson, just like my Dad owned around 1958. He loved the room inside, especially with all the kids, and especially the step-down interior.

    Dad was a seeker of efficiency, gas mileage and otherwise. So he took out the flathead 6 and installed a ’50 Oldsmobile V8 + std. transmission in its place.

    He wasn’t a hot rodder like me—far from it. He just liked American V8s a lot more than flathead sixes, and he needed the room for the family.

    I have great memories of that car, and that Dad.

  8. LAB3

    Has a chop top look to it that’s kinda cool. I’m not well versed on what it may be worth but for a car that solid and complete, could you replicate it for $12500? A big old four door isn’t my cup of tea but it looks like a fair price.

  9. Ross W. Lovell

    Greetings All,

    I just question the need for a paint job and that damage for 5400 miles.

    It’s more than possible, but there has to be more to the story?

  10. Howard A Member

    These cars always naturally looked the top was chopped. And it’s true, only in rare cases does a story affect the sale. After all, it’s a ’49 Hudson to everybody else. Poor Felix didn’t drive it long, as the Korean War started ( for us) in fall of 1950. This car sure seems to have more than 1 years use on it. Still a great find. And to me, NO war is forgotten. Ever. AMERICA!!! FREEDOM! Thanks David for that reminder.

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