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What year is the Commander?

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  • #16
    Thanks, Mr. Biggs, for your reply. Response to you and others replying: I Googled images of '41 Nash. Despite most pix there being front-quarter shots, it didn't appear to me that the window lines really matched Gramp's car; the '41 seems more angular.

    I don't believe what Mr. Biggs saw is two-tone paint, but lighting on a one-tone dark car (not black--it's lighter than the Stude). I looked at '40 Nash to see what I'd see, and those side windows look more like this (I wasn't able to decide for sure from pix I found). Seems to me this car is late '30s, poss. '40, the old style sedan with no separate trunk "box" (as copied in the PT Cruiser). I believe this is definitely a 4-door sedan; now that Terry noticed, I see the door handles (which probably contributed to Mr. Biggs' perception of two-tone paint).

    We really don't have much to go on here, but you folks will figure this out.


    • #17
      Just to confirm 1950 Commander, only in 1950 were there 8 to 10 inches of metal between the front wheel well and the back of the fender. In 51 it was nearer 4 inches.

      Tom Bredehoft
      '53 Commander Coupe
      '60 Lark VI
      '05 Legacy Ltd Wagon
      All three Indiana built OD cars


      • #18
        About the mystery car behind the Commander: Since my last post I've been searching photos, and I've found no matches I'm satisfied with. Note the car in my photo has: short front doors, so is probably a four-door; longish roof, so is probably a fastback; roundish side window openings with relatively thin door frame at front and top-front and a large vent wing; apparently no molding at beltline, either stamped into sheet metal (rules out Chevy) or applied chrome; apparent door handles just below beltline.

        All the 1938-1941 Nashes, Hudsons, Studebakers, Chevys, Plymouths seem to mismatch at least one of these qualities. The closest I've found is '38 Ford, but its door handles are much lower (it's the only one so far which has a simple bulge from beltline, but its bulge occurs below window line, where handles appear on mine).

        To me, this car has to be from the late 30s. But the rounded windows tend put it earlier in that period and the body style (rounded, fastback) tends to put it later. It also appears that this is a smallish car, more likely a Ford or Chevy than a Hudson or Studebaker.


        • #19
          Hotwheels, I appreciate your input. I can see what you mean. However, I assure you my grandfather never had a Volvo; I never heard of Volvo until at least the 1960s, and I definitely would have been familiar with the make if I'd ever seen one, especially in the family. (By the late 50s I'd seen and noticed Saab, Isetta, Berkeley, Tempo, and of course the common ones, but not Volvo.) I'm sure that at the time he had this car, I knew exactly what it was, and I was about 6 when he got the Hudson Pacer that replaced it. (Nowadays though, I have trouble remembering all the cars I'VE had--old age.)

          Thanks, all, for your suggestions, but I guess we won't ever solve this one; there's just too little to go on. I've looked at 1938-41 Dodge, Ford, Plymouth, Nash, Hudson, Chevy, Stude, and only the '39 Dodge and '39 Ford even look possible and I'm not convinced with either of them.

          Y'all are fantastic! Thanks!