Rust-Free Estate Find: 1955 Hudson Hornet Super

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My eyes bug out like Rodney Dangerfield whenever I hear that a car is rust-free, especially a car as old as this 1955 Hudson Hornet Super. This two-tone sedan can be found here on eBay with a buy it now price of $7,500 or you can make an offer. It’s located in Ballston Lake, New York. Let’s check it out.

I have owned cars from the late-1990s that have rusted themselves to death in twenty years so for a car to be as old as the Beetles never thought they’d be (64), and have it be rust-free? Winner. I almost don’t care about anything else than that. Most other things can be fixed fairly easily if parts are available, but rust? Rust is the scourge of the old car lover. Ok, enough about rust, there isn’t any so why all the chatter, SG? This is a California car and an estate car.

They mention that the paint is delaminating but it doesn’t look that bad to me. If it’s original, which they say it is, then I’d leave it as is. It sure has a ’55 Chevy look to it from the rear, and those louvers in the rear window are great. This is the first of the last-generation Hudson Hornet, or Hudson, in general. With the Nash/Hudson merger in 1954, the 1955 Hornet would be the first new car for the company but, sadly, Hudson would go away after the 1957 model year. I really like the look of the ’56 and ’57 cars with the over-the-top styling but the clean design of the ’55s are great, too.

This car has the Twin-Ultramatic transmission made by Packard. They say that the ” Interior has torn head liner, several cracks in dash”, and “front seat is in sad shape, has a cover on it.” Also, the “Left front laminated door glass is cracked”. Having the widest front seats in the industry, that would come in handy today… This car doesn’t appear to have what was at the time a very highly-rated air-conditioning system: the Weather-Eye system. Here’s a fun commercial about the 1955 Hudson on YouTube.

The engine looks great to me, just dusty from sitting for so long. The seller says that the “Car runs good, but only runs when gas is ran directly into carburetor. Car has been in storage for last year and half. Has been in heated garage”. The car was driven regularly before being put into storage. This is Packard’s 320 cubic-inch V8 with 208 hp. If this were a two-door the asking price wouldn’t seem out of line, but in 1955 a buyer would have to pop for a Hudson Hollywood to get a two-door sedan. What do you think this car is worth as it sits? It sure looks like a good weekend project to me.

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  1. HoA Howard AMember

    What a find. Last gasp for one of the greatest cars made. Hudson was going down fast, and not many bought these with only 6,000 Hornet V8’s made in ’55. I say it has the most of other ’55 cars in this class. While the new Packard tried to compete with Caddy and Lincoln, this was a car for the average family, like a Chevy, Ford or Dodge/Plymouth. Being a huge AMC fan, if I was looking for a medium class car in ’55, I,,,would have bought the Hudson. Love it’s style and features, the Packard V8. What a cool find.

    Like 14
  2. Fred W

    I think the Checker Cab stylist must have been inspired by this one! Would love to own it.

    Like 3
  3. 86 Vette Convertible

    Now that’s a survivor IMO. Has a feel to it you won’t get with anything made in the last 20 years.

    Like 6
  4. Djs

    Not my cup of tea boxy and no style but it looks to be in great shape

    Like 2
    • HoA Howard AMember

      WHAT?? No style? Sorry, this was the epitome of ’50’s styling. I trust you weren’t there.

      Like 24
  5. Graham Line

    “Weather Eye” was a Nash development that monitored and blended heated air and external air to “condition” the temperature in the car. But it didn’t have the cooling capability of a contemporary air conditioning system with compressors, condensers, etc. Nash added that capability in 1954 and called it “All-Weather-Eye.”
    Hudsons from 1955 onward to the end were badge-engineered Nashes.

    Like 4
  6. cornet_4_life

    wow looks like the fabulous Hudson Hornet

    Like 1
  7. ramblergarage

    The other engines available in these were the famous Hudson Sixes with or without the twin H option.
    The Hudson Wasp used the engine from the former Hudson Jet 202 six.
    All great cars!

    Like 4
  8. dweezilaz

    There were no two door sedans available in the last 55-57 Hudsons. Only two door hardtops known as “Hollywood”s.

    55 still used the dash binnacle of the 54 and the Hudson 6. Gone by 56.

    Like 1
  9. Sal

    Nice looking car. I’ve ridden in a ’55 Clipper (same drive train) and it felt like a lot more then 208hp.

    I feel bad for cars like this. This poor Hudson fought the odds and somehow lasted 63 years. Ten years from now, we’ll look back at this ad and say ‘Dang, I could have had that clean, super low mileage car for only $7,500?!’
    But today we see it and say ‘Eh, its ok.’
    Everyone says prices are falling on older cars, but the truth is they are just lagging behind the more popular stuff. An example- Model T’s don’t cost less then they used to; they just haven’t kept pace with other vehicles.

    Hopefully someone hungry for a project to work on and to love, gets a hold of this car. Because then they can say ‘Man, glad I picked this up when I did.’

    Like 5
  10. FordGuy1972 Fordguy1972Member

    Now this car is an interesting ’50’s survivor, something different from the endless parade of Tri-Five Chevys and Crown Vics. While it needs some interior work, I’d just leave the rest alone. Get it running, go over the brakes and preserve the exterior as-is. Very cool car; love the bizarre two-tone red and white..

    Like 5
  11. Beatnik Bedouin

    This is a very nice example of a ‘Hash’ and worthy of preservation. Most of these cars ended up as unloved orphans and disappeared from the scene fairly early in their lives.

    Packard, which was in its own death throes, had a lot of extra manufacturing capacity, hence being able to provide AMC with V8 engines and transmissions to provide some much needed cashflow to a struggling Studebaker-Packard Corp.

    If you compare the styling of this particular Hudson to its contemporary competitors – De Soto, Buick and Mercury – it looks very stodgy, indeed, which also probably didn’t help sales in ’55.

    To respond to Sal’s comments: The problem with cars such as the Hudson is that their primary appeal is in an ever-shrinking market of folk who are now in their mid-60s through to their 80s (i.e. old farts like me! LOL).

    The bottom dropped out of the Model T market in the early-1990s, as those whom are described as ‘The Greatest Generation’ started to pass away. This was widely reported in the US motoring press, at the time.

    Like 4
  12. IkeyHeyman

    I love offbeat and orphan cars, so the featured car is right up my alley. I tried several times to buy this non-running green and white ’55 that sat behind a repair shop in North Hollywood,CA. The owner wanted $10K and I wanted to pay $2K, which I thought was a good offer. Don’t know if it’s still there or not.

    Like 4
  13. Old Car Guy

    If the ad is truthful the car was driven on a regular basis until a year and 1\2 ago. I would rather buy one like this than one that had been sitting for 20-30 years. Cars deteriorate worse when not be used unless they have been prepared properly for long term storage which 99.5% have not been prepared.

    Like 5
  14. David

    Packard powered AMCs are worth the price due to rarity

    Like 0
  15. John Brooks

    This 55H is from the dealer in Modesto CA. I bought it in 1975 as the third owner. SInce no one could find tail lites for it, it was not being driven for years. Who ever buys it can contact me for a long history that includes sitting in a garage for almost 40 years. The last I heard was someone repainted the red.

    Like 0

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