$154,000 USD | Sold
| Hershey, Pennsylvania
- From a prominent, climate-controlled collection
- One of only 2,274 built for the model year, of which a cherished few have survived
- Delightful combination of Glade Green over a red leather interior; black convertible top
- Formerly owned by noted “woodie” collector Nick Alexander; 1998 Early Ford V-8 Club Dearborn Award-winner
- A beautifully restored example of one of the most desirable post-war Fords
By the mid-1940s, it was clear that the age of wood-bodied automobiles was coming to a close. All-steel cars offered too many mass-production advantages, and they were more durable to boot. Yet there was undeniable beauty and a certain charm in hand-crafted wood bodywork, and the last generation of “woodies” built in the years following World War II are some of the most desirable and sought-after cars of their era.
As this 1947 Ford Super Deluxe Sportsman Convertible shows, post-war woodies—in direct contrast to the humble, born-of-necessity depot hacks of yore—were exclusive, stylish image-leaders, and they were priced accordingly. At $2,282, the Sportsman Convertible cost over $500 more than a non-woodie Super Deluxe Convertible. Production for 1947 was approximately one-tenth of that of the steel-bodied cars, with just 2,274 built for the model year.
In addition to exclusivity, and a well-chosen model name that instantly evoked a carefree life in the great outdoors, 1947 Super Deluxe Sportsman Convertible buyers were treated to Ford’s signature V-8 power (in this case, a 239-cubic-inch flathead later enhanced with a Mercury crankshaft and Mercury camshaft) paired with a three-speed gearbox. This car is fitted with a Columbia two-speed rear axle, giving it longer legs for highway cruising.
This Sportsman was previously restored on the east coast by Kent Bank and Chip Webb of Automotive Restorations in Stratford, Connecticut. It is finished in the highly attractive color of Glade Green, which pairs pleasantly with the red leather interior. The black convertible top sports 1946-style red piping. Owned by Melville Warren Garbitt in the 1970s, the car received an AACA National First Prize in 1991. Highly respected woodie collector Nick Alexander purchased it in February 1995 before it received the Early Ford V-8 Club’s Dearborn Award at Dearborn in 1998, scoring 995 points.
Having seen only limited use while in the care of subsequent owners, this Sportsman presents beautifully today, with excellent paint and chromework, a finely detailed cabin including wood-grained dashboard, and, of course, glistening woodwork. The glass sports correct Ford script etching, and the blackwall tires give the car a purposeful, period-correct stance.
A timeless design coupled with a low survival rate has made the Super Deluxe Sportsman Convertible one of the most sought-after of the great woodies, as well as one of the most collectable post-war Fords, and this example is made all the more appealing by its award-winning restoration and years of scrupulous care. A joy to own, drive, and display, a Sportsman such as this would enhance any collection.