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Lot 154

1946 Ford Super Deluxe Station Wagon (Marmon-Herrington)

  • Chassis no. 99A1047689

Sold for $247,500

Model 69A. 100 bhp, 239 cu. in. Flathead V8 engine, four-speed manual transmission, live front axle with longitudinal semi-elliptic leaf springs and quarter-elliptic torque springs, live rear axle with transverse semi-elliptic leaf spring, four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 114"

Marmon-Herrington, Incorporated, of Indianapolis, Indiana, began converting Ford cars and trucks to four-wheel drive in 1937. The company, originally formed to build all-wheel drive military vehicles, was kept busy during World War II building combat tanks and trucks, as well as wreckers and winch trucks for barrage balloons.

At war’s end, the company embarked on a program of diversification, entering the market for multi-stop delivery vehicles. The Delivr-All was a short-wheelbase van with a removable front axle and engine unit. Equipped for standing or seated drivers, it was built from 1945 to 1952. Marmon-Herrington also built some buses and trolleys.

Production of converted Fords resumed in 1946, using the new 69A models as a basis. These continued through the end of 89A production in June 1948. Six cylinder engines became available near the end. Thereafter, conversions were confined to F-1, F-3 and F-4 trucks. In 1950, production began on a Ranger model, a conversion of an F-1 panel truck in the four-wheel drive Suburban idiom. The advent of factory four-wheel drive at Ford in 1959, however, put an end to the long record of Marmon-Herrington conversions.

The truck business was spun off as Marmon Motor Company in 1963. It closed in 1997. Marmon-Herrington, however, survives as a supplier of axles and transfer cases for large trucks and specialty vehicles.

This super deluxe station wagon is an excellent example of a postwar Marmon-Herrington four-wheel drive conversion, Owned originally by Utah Mining Co., unlike most M-H vehicles it was not subjected to extreme use or rough treatment and was in remarkable original condition although dissembled when first seen by Nick.

All contours are correct, and the body exhibits original Birch frame wood with contrasting Mahogany panels beneath 10 coats of varnish. The doors shut well and have even gaps. All glass is excellent, and the roof is covered in new black artificial leather. Brightwork is superb all around, as is the running board rubber.

The seats are newly upholstered in tan leather, the front with lap belts for two. There are new black rubber floor mats front and rear. The dashboard has been restored, and is attractive with excellent plastic and restored instruments. The electric clock, however, is missing its stem knob.

The 59AB engine is appropriately detailed in blue, and the black chassis and underbody are very clean. Last summer, Nick drove the car from Los Angeles to Encinitas and back to participate in Wavecrest, one of the most important woodie events, where in excess of 250 woodies crowd the parking lot annually at Moonlight Beach. Cruising down Hwy 5 at 75 mph was facilitated with the additional horsepower from the four-inch Mercury crankshaft and later Mercury camshaft, expertly modified by Alexander Restoration’s Tim Krehbiel. The car is fitted with 7.00-15 Goodyear blackwalls with mud and snow tread. There is a matching tailgate-mounted spare, with no cover. The hub caps are 1939 standard-style, as used on the Marmon-Herringtons, with 15-inch tires.

A Dearborn Award winner, it was judged at 999 points at Abilene, Texas, in 2005. The lost point was deducted for a misrouted fuel line. Further inspection showed the line to be properly routed., The car is registered with California year-of-manufacture plates 1P9926, which are included in the sale. The current indicated mileage is just under 33,000. This car represents the chance to acquire a Marmon-Herrington woodie that nears perfection.


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Alexander Weaver

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Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

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Gord Duff

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Michael Squire

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Mike Fairbairn

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As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

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Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

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Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more