Disclosure: This site may receive compensation when you click on some links and make purchases.

Nomad Killer: 1956 Ford Parklane Wagon


Direct out of Barn Find’s “How Rare Is This” department, comes this 1956 Ford station wagon! It’s offered for sale here on craigslist out of Columbia, Missouri. The $1,000 asking price seems like a bargain for such a scarce vehicle.


This two-door Ford wagon was introduced to compete directly with Chevrolet’s Nomad. This Ford version is called a Parklane and was only produced for one year – 1956. As with other tri-five Fords, if I can use that term, it actually outsold the mighty Nomad by almost two-to-one! It was popular enough that over 15,000 units were produced.


But like lots of other cars that are rare, they didn’t sell in large enough numbers to keep the brand going, and that’s because both Parklanes and Nomads weren’t very practical. Buyers preferred more useful and utilitarian four door wagons, with easy access to the rear seats,  and the regular wagons outsold these two-door models by big margins. The Parklane was more of a high-trim model, based on the lowly Ranch Wagon, but with all the trim and trappings of a Fairlane.


Chevrolet wasn’t the only competition for the Parklane though, be sure and check out Studebaker’s response, posted awhile back by Josh.

The seller says this is a solid project, although we can see it has at least some rust, and needs rockers, for starters.  He says the glass is all there and in good condition, which is a lot more significant on this car than others. He says the quarter panels are repairable, and the frame is good. The drivetrain and title are gone, and these can be expensive items to replace. But I think this rare wagon is worth the trouble. What do you think?


  1. Avatar photo Charles

    With so much missing, I would build a street rod from it.

    Like 0
    • Avatar photo Jason Houston

      Why not just crush it up and make a 2013 Honda out of it instead? Would look just as good…

      Like 0
  2. Avatar photo Jason Houston

    Sorry to be the bearer of sad news, guys, but this is not a Parklane, and it was never a competitor to the Chevrolet Nomad.

    What you found is a garden-variety 1956 Ford 6-passenger Customline 2-door Ranch Wagon – first introduced in 1952, not 1956. It’s not an especially rare car per se`, but as with any 2-door wagon, very desirable. The colors are Goldenglow Yellow and Colonial White, with a buckskin interior and is a rare and handsome trim choice for any Ranch Wagon.

    Too bad you didn’t grab this for your ‘flipper project’. It throws rocks at any foreign car and the potential for profits are virtually limitless!

    Like 0
  3. Avatar photo piper62j

    Nahh!! Parts car..

    Like 0
  4. Avatar photo Bob Lichty

    Jason is right. 2dr Country sedan. Not a Parklane. Completely different trim and more. This car mirrors the Customline series while Park Lanes share trim with Fairlane series Most certainly worth saving how ever.

    Like 0
    • Avatar photo Jason Houston

      Actually, Ford didn’t offer a 2-door Country Sedan until 1959, which replaced the Del Rio as the high-line 2-door wagon. Until then, 2-doors were Ranch Wagons and 4-doors were Country Sedans.

      Like 0
    • Avatar photo George Thompson

      Right on Bob Park Lane was A Mercury product..

      Like 0
  5. Avatar photo Mike D

    my family back when had a 4dr sedan, with a 3spd that someone made it a floor shift, it was a fun car, but being in the Northeast it was a ruster , the floors is what killed it . No need for a large V/8 . Here in NY all I’d need is a bill of sale with the VIN, this would be OK for a redo, and not drop a lot of $$ into it . It would be sure to get a lot of attention at cruise ins with room for 5

    Like 0
  6. Avatar photo Marty Member

    Sorry faithful readers. My bad. The feature car didn’t have the right trim. Here’s a Parklane from Wikipedia:

    Like 0
  7. Avatar photo Puhnto

    I’m guessing Parklanes sold more than Nomad because they used an ordinary Ranchwagon body — gussied up a bit — and the Nomad was considerably different from standard Chevy wagons, and probably cost a lot more than the Fords.

    Like 0
    • Avatar photo Jason Houston

      That is correct. The market for ritzy, uptown station wagons was still a decade away.

      Like 0
  8. Avatar photo Vanman34

    Bob, what are you doing up at 5:40 AM to submit a comment?
    I had one of these as a student at Georgia Tech in ’56. We put a mattress from one of the vacant dorm rooms during the summer quarter and would cruise Atlanta with guys lying in back on the mattress. One time we had dates with girls from Emory but when we arrived with the mattress in the back their house mother wouldn’t allow them to go until we’d taken back the mattress and put the rear seats into their passenger position.

    Like 0
  9. Avatar photo stillrunners

    good eye guys….beside if it was a Parklane – it looked to have been stripped of the Crown Victoria/Vicky trim along with the front seat which looks to be missing and also was the same seat for the Vickys with the trim package as well….still makes a nice rod….

    Like 0
    • Avatar photo Jason Houston

      The entire Parklane exterior was Fairlane, while the interior was actually shared with the Sunliner, complete with a snap-down boot to cover the cargo area behind the 2nd seat. Very deluxe cars IMHO, and the Sunliner touch was priceless!

      I’ve had two of these, Bermuda Blue/Diamond Blue and Pine Ridge Green/Meadowmist Green, neither of which came with any of the original interior components. The 3rd color available was Buckskin Tan/Colonial White – the color I always wanted.

      Like 0
  10. Avatar photo Jim

    The missing grille is available in the aftermarket, also the bumpers. The lower quarters and tailgate skin are simple enough to make from flat steel sheet. It could be a cool cruiser of local car show piece. Any Ford v8 fits under the hood, motor mounts and headers for any engine combo are available also. Having the parts available makes the project easier.

    Like 0
    • Avatar photo Jason Houston

      The proper engine applications are a Y-block V8, with 272, 292 or 312 displacement. A 223- c.i. 6 cylinder was also available.

      Like 0
  11. Avatar photo Richard Prokopchuk

    My dad had one of those when I was young. Same yellow/white combo. With 5 kids, the two doors didn’t cut it though.

    Like 0
  12. Avatar photo Metalted

    What a cool old wagon. The price is descent, and could make a nice daily driver , with modern fi , od tranny.
    My last wagon was 1988 merc.
    A turd, but super handy.
    I may go check this one out!!!

    Like 0
  13. Avatar photo ben

    wish it was closer any way to contact I have two 56 fairlanes 2dr ht two engines 3 trans but need ft fenders and a few outher things thanks ben lostinthe60s2@yahoo.com might want to trade or sell one or all if I cant find parts thanks ben

    Like 0
  14. Avatar photo Jim

    Just recently I saw a listing for replacement front sheet metal for 55-57 Ford’s, I’ll look later and post the info.

    Like 0
  15. Avatar photo Jim

    Ben I apologize, 55-56 was patch panels, inner supports and inner splash shields only.

    Like 0
  16. Avatar photo Wayne

    Can’t compare this to a Nomad for style.

    Like 0
  17. Avatar photo Jason Houston

    No, you have to compare it to a 210 Handyman. It does not compete with a Nomad.

    Like 0

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks.

Become a member to add images to your comments.


Get new comment updates via email. Or subscribe without commenting.