(From Auto & RV)
In its day, the '51 Crosley Station Wagon was known as a "functional" vehicle. Today, it would probably be described as "funky" with some modern vehicles sporting that square shape.
But with today's fuel costs, it would be a great vehicle to own with a 40-50 mpg capability. It only had 26.5 hp., but then again, it only weighed 1,340 pounds.
This model was built between 1947 and 1952. It sported a small propeller on its grille and you could also get simulated wood on the sides as this example has.
Dan DeClark of Washington Township, Ohio, owns this Canto Cream and Wimbleton White '51. Dan restored the wagon to a high level, but it sure didn't start that way. He bought the vehicle from his father-in-law in 1993 in cardboard boxes. "It was a real challenge and I wanted to do it right. A lot of people couldn't believe I spent so much time on a Crosley."
There was sheet metal damage and lots of rust requiring replacement of the many parts. "I did use some modern materials some of the time, but always to original specs." The interior was redone in its original-type red vinyl material.
DeClark noted, "To contain the rear wheels within the external confines, it was necessary for the company to 'tub' the interior to contain them. By the way, all the original glass is still in place."
With the many advantages of the mini machine, there were also dangers. "First, it was always at a great weight disadvantage to the large heavy vehicles of the period. With no seatbelts, the seats served as ejection seats for those riding in them," Dan indicated.
He said that most can't identify the Crosley brand. "Most think that it's probably some British design," DeClark explained
Dan also explained that some of these wagons were converted to pickups which was a pretty easy thing to do. "But they didn't pick up much volume as the back seat could be folded down for more carrying capability."
The present owner said that the little wagon either gets a first place or nothing in many of the car shows it competes at.
"I think the judges reason that my wagon is about one-third the size of the other cars, so it took only about one-third the work."
Boy, were they ever mistaken about that!
(Photo is posted.)