Super Project: 1950 Nash Landau Convertible

Just to get it in before anyone else does – yes, this 1950 Nash Landau convertible is similar to the car that Lois Lane drove in the 1950s Superman tv series, but hers was a 1951 model I believe. You can find this super project car here on eBay in Rogers, Arkansas. The seller has a $4,500 buy it now price listed or you can make an offer.

I love Nash, from day-one back before 1920 all the way up to and through the AMC merger in 1954. Unfortunately, the brand went away just a few years later. The 1950s cars are probably the defining Nash design, in my opinion. The partially-enclosed wheel openings, the “bathtub” style, and who doesn’t miss the days when car companies weren’t afraid to have happy cars rather than the ridiculous, scowling, angry-headlight, electric razor “faces” that they have now?! I sure miss those happy days – despite the whole cold war and nuclear annihilation thing.

This car will need a major restoration, everything inside and out, cosmetic and mechanical will need to be restored. There has been a really nice one for sale recently for somewhere north of $50,000 if I remember right. I’m not sure what the fair market value is on these cars, but Hagerty lists a #2 excellent condition car as being worth $31,500. It might be possible to restore this car for $25,000 if the next owner does a lot of the work her/himself. Otherwise, it’ll be a labor of love rather than a money-making adventure, which full restorations often are.

The heady days of the early-1950s are fascinating to me. I wasn’t even close to being born yet and my parents were just on the verge of being teenagers, but I love the simplicity or the seeming simplicity of life back then. It’s always easy to look back and forget about polio, the constant threat of nuclear war, the budding Korean War, and all of the other problems that made life a living H.E. double-toothpicks (as they probably said in the 50s) back then. I much prefer to just focus on cars to see both how far we’ve come and maybe how far off base we’ve come since then. We now load so much technology into our vehicles that we feel that we can text and eat and put on makeup and still safely pilot our 2-ton vehicles through hoards of other drivers doing the same thing. After all, our 17 airbags, lane-assist, and automatic braking functions will protect us.

Does anyone do plaid interiors anymore? VW maybe? Porsche? I love it, although this one is past its prime and this entire interior will need to be stripped out and restored. The seller says that the front floors will need some work and you can see that the body, in general, needs a lot of work. This car touted an AM radio and a Weather-Eye heater/defroster. Those aren’t exactly things that any car company would brag about now when there are more important things like heated and cooled cup holders and little monitors on the back of the front headrests so the kiddies can be absorbed by a brain-shrinking, computer-generated movie rather than counting the number of Wall Drug signs or seeing actual nature out of the windows. What a concept.

Here’s where a few of you will want to drop that spare SBC that you have sitting around and I admit that the original 173 cubic-inch flathead-six with 82-hp leaves a lot to be desired, power-wise. Still, for me, just to relive that era that I wasn’t even a part of yet, I would keep this beautiful car all original spec during the restoration. The seller hasn’t turned it over yet but they’re sure that this engine will fire up with a bit of tinkering. Are any of you fans of these early-1950s Nash Landaus?

WANT ADS

WANTED 1968-1977 Ford Bronco Have all their parts. Running engine or rust free not necessary. Prefer southern US Contact

WANTED 1965-1985 Chrysler Fullsize Roadtrip car for crazy swede Nice original fullsize US car, up for a 5000 mile trip. Max 10 k USD. Contact

WANTED 1972 Ford Ranchero GT Ready to go 4 speed, no restoration project, preferably white in Midwest Contact

WANTED 1965 Oldsmobile Cutlass Convertible Looking for the rear seats or bare frames. Must be from a convertible which are smaller. Contact

WANTED 1981 – 1989 Renault LeCar, Alliance, Medallion Looking for near-new condition Contact

Submit Your Want Ad

Comments

  1. Kenneth Carney

    Even though it’s rusty and forlorn, this car
    just oozes cool! Saw one once that had a 302 Ford in it at a car show in Kissemee
    20 years ago. (I think) Oh Scotty, you
    forgot about the song “Beep Beep” by the
    Playmates. …Hey buddy how do I get
    this car out of second gear?

    Like 10
    • Jack Robinson

      My dad was a Nash dealer at this time and turned one of these upside down on a stack of old tires on the showroom floor to show customers how strong the side rails on this convertible top were. My mom had a black one that was really sharp.

      Like 14
    • Brakeservo

      Was a “Little Nash Rambler” in the song. I believe I was cresting the famous “Grapevine” the first time I heard that song!

      Like 5
      • James Martin

        Put the top down. Never saw a convert one of these. Ugly cool.

        Like 4
      • Hotroddad daddy

        We’re you driving a hot rod Lincoln?

  2. Coventrycat

    We have those stupid car faces today because the people behind the wheels of them are insecure and need the aggressive look like a Halloween mask.
    That aside, I really like that Nash.

    Like 10
    • BobinBexley Bob in Bexley Member

      Current cars are ugly & overly engineered due to safety & emissions standards which currently & unfortunately ain’t got no obvious art form apparent. I do like the idea of a collapsing steering column instead a broom pole thru the chest & air out the tail pipe cleaner than what you breathe normally.

    • dweezilaz

      LOL. Just reflects the driver’s face as they crawl right up yer arse

      Like 4
  3. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Wow….rare on there and priced right !

    Like 4
  4. DONALD ROY

    Anyone know where the 58 Edsel Bermuda went????

    • Bellingham Fred

      It just disappeared, we are attempting to triangulate its location. Still waiting for flight 19 to respond.

      Like 3
  5. ccrvtt

    My mom had a 2 door 1951 until she got a new 1957 Country Squire and my dad took over the Rambler. He kept it for four more years. I loved going through the owner’s manual and poring over the pictures of the convertible version. Like many a youngster of that era, my parents weren’t cool enough to buy a convertible. The later Country Club hardtops were a very classy design as well. I hope this one gets restored.

    Like 6
  6. Andy

    Great Cesar’s ghost! That’s a neat car that you just never see. Restored, it would be incredible. The SBC is definitely the way to go.

    And don’t call me Chief!

    Like 8
    • Mountainwoodie

      I can’t tell you how many episodes of Superman with George Reeves I watched as a little kid. Funny how this car is so associated with the TV show and Lois Lane.
      Shows you the power of popular culture imagery sixty! years later.
      I remember whenever he jumped out the window in the hallway I worried he would fall …….lol
      Its great that successive owners manged to keep this car from the crusher.

      Like 7
      • Howard A Member

        I agree, Hollywood indeed immortalized certain cars in our brains. Whenever I see a car like this, or the Brady station wagon, or Mr. Kimballs Bronco, I think of the shows that featured them. TV was huge when I was a kid, and saw the original Superman later on in reruns, but Lois Lane indeed drove a car like this in the early shows, and drove a dark ’53 in later shows. Clark Kent even showed up to the newspaper office one day in a Nash-Healey. Nash was their sponsor at the time.
        https://www.imcdb.org/v499886.html
        This car, as equipped, will be horribly inept for todays travel. Anyone that has driven one of these will agree. Some kind of update would be in order, a REASONABLE update, without going USA gonzo, be a fun little car. I think that convertible with the fixed frame, kind of, was a good idea. I bet it still leaked like a sieve in a downpour, and the vacuum wipers, must have been a fun ride,,,

        Like 2
  7. Will Fox

    Now THIS is a rare find, guys. These Landau cvts. did not survive in huge numbers, and this one has (from what I can see anyway) VERY, VERY solid bones indeed!! NO…this is no tub or pro-street project; this is definitely one you restore to factory specs. While Rambers of this period get a ho-hum rap, these little drop-tops are the cream of the crop!! Lois Lane aside, This car was also THE subject matter of the song, “Beep! beep!” in the 50s; the little car up against the Cadillac that would not be “shamed”! (Crew Cuts did the song maybe?) This gem is as scarce as the `51 Frazer 4dr. cvt. featured the other day–far too few built vs. the number that have survived 68 years! Restore it, and you have a stunning piece of Americana NEVER duplicated at car shows!

    Like 6
    • David P. Reeves

      The Crew Cuts might have done a cover, but a novelty group called the Playmates had the hit version in 1958.

      Like 3
    • Howard A Member

      The reason there are so few survivors, is because nobody bought them in the 1st place.

      Like 3
  8. Kenneth Carney

    Well… how ’bout a 232 or a 258 AMC inline 6 and auto tyranny to spice things up a bit? that and some modern brakes would go a long way to make this car more enjoyable to drive with no worries. On the whole of it, the car doesn’t look all that bad a candidate for a mild restomodding. It’s just in too good of a condition to be cut up like the one I’d seen 20 years ago in Kissimmee. At least that’s what I’d do with it if it were mine. These days, it’s not how fast you can go, but how far you can go beyond a gas station.

    Like 5
    • Bob McK Member

      I have never seen one of these before. Would be fun to drive.

      Like 1
  9. dweezilaz

    Dead on Scotty. Bam bam and bam. And you weren’t even born yet.

    A lot simpler time and a lot less federal nannyism going on in every level of life.

    Like 5
  10. Kenneth Carney

    Yeah Dave, my aunt had the 45 by the Playmates. You can still find the song on YouTube even today. The ’40’s and ’50’s were truly great times in the US auto industry along with ’60’s. You’d never be able to build a car like this today.

    Like 3
  11. luke arnott Member

    The song in the Uk was “Beep Beep” but about a “Limousine” (not a Cadillac)
    and it was about being passed by a Bubblecar.The recording group were the Dallas Boys who were very popular at the time.Anyone recall them?

    Like 2
    • madbrit

      I had the UK version by the Playmates which was a re-recorded version, not using brand names as per the BBC policy of no advertising. It used the limo and bubble car terms instead of the Cadillac and Nash.
      I don’t recall the Dallas Boys version, maybe it was a Woolworths label (Embassy) cover?
      So glad no one has mentioned the Metropolitan as being the car in question. I have Mets and nearly everyone seems to think it is the Beep Beep car.

      Like 3
      • luke arnott Member

        The Dallas Boys (also known as The 5 Dallas Boys) got a lot of television/radio work late 50’s/early 60’s.Don’t think they did the Embassy label though?
        Could tell you about a friend finding a Metro in a lane outside Nuneaton in the late 60’s which he assumed had been dumped.As he unbolted the rear bumper,he saw two faces looking at him through the rear window……

        Like 2
  12. ramblergarage

    I have one. The most fun car ever.

    Like 13
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      I should have known that you’d have one, ramblergarage! Nice!

      Like 3
  13. lbpa18

    Seems like it should float in the bathtub.

    Like 1
  14. Dale Gallien

    My 51 wagon will go freeway speeds, but that’s working it pretty hard. I did see pictures of one with a Toyota 22R engine. It slipped in there pretty nicely. They definitely need a brake update.

  15. John

    Ha haaaa!!! Top down in a bath-tub sounds like fun no matter how you take it!

    Like 2
  16. Bill Wilkman

    I’ve always liked these cars. From the days of high spirited design. Your comment re mean vehicles these days is spot on. Pickup trucks in particular have gotten was out of hand re over the top size and ridiculous intimidating looks!

    Like 1
  17. Mark

    Looks the same color as mine!

    Like 8
  18. Mark Evans

    Always thought that the Metropolitan was the one in the song. Maybe because I owned one back in the 80″s.

    • madbrit

      Much the same as the amount of folks that ask if the Met really does float……..

  19. florin

    on his way to europe.
    hope to make it a nice driver .
    even more rare in europe because it,s hardly sold outside of USA.

    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Mortensen Staff

      Thanks for the update florin! Please keep us updated!

  20. al

    arrived in the Netherlands.
    Happy with it.
    Will take some time but whatever.

    Like 2

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks.

Become a member to add images to your comments.

*

Keep me in the conversation via email. Or subscribe without commenting.