Pick of the Day: Hudson Commodore club coupe custom resto-mod

The rare 2-door was transformed into a showpiece with classic styling over modern mechanicals

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The Hudson resto-mod looks resplendent in Roman Red, whitewalls and gleaming chrome trim

The Pick of the Day is a resto-mod you probably didn’t see coming, a 1949 Hudson Commodore club coupe packed with performance and built by a famous custom shop from a low-mileage original.

“This magnificent Hudson was acquired from the collection of the estate of a retired Hudson dealer,” according to the Marietta, Georgia, dealer advertising the Hudson on ClassicCars.com. “It had traveled only 11,000 miles from new prior to the acquisition by the current owner 20 years ago.”

Whether you agree with the direction the owner took in updating the Hudson into a mechanically modern resto-mod, the terrific result is hard to dispute, creating what looks to be a well-restored 71-year-old coupe that under its gleaming finish is essentially a street rod.

“Over $100,000 invested in the build, completed by famed Richard Petty NASCAR Shop, including the exterior, interior, chrome and mechanics. Only 700 miles since completion,” the seller says in the ad.

In the mid-20th Century, Hudson was ahead of the curve compared with other American manufacturers, with such advanced features as unibody construction and a “step-down” ride height, which created a low center of gravity that improved handling and made it highly competitive on race tracks of the era.

The Hudson brand received renewed attention in recent years due to the appearance of the Fabulous Hudson Hornet race car, voiced by the late Paul Newman, in the animated Cars movies.

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This Hudson has been fitted with a Mopar 440cid V8 with a 4-barrel carburetor, headers, stainless-steel exhaust, chrome dress-up kit, aluminum radiator with dual cooling fans, Torqueflite automatic transmission and a 9-inch Ford rear end with a limited-slip differential. A Fat Man front independent suspension has been added.

The seller lists the upgrades and modern features, which include  power steering, power disc brakes,  Vintage Air AC, full Autometer instrumentation, woodgrain interior finish, Iditit chrome steering column with tilt wheel,  Grant mahogany steering wheel, AM/FM/CD sound system — rear fender skirts,  an original-style sun shade, wide whitewall radials – Hudson-scripted wheel covers, chrome beauty rings, chrome rain guards and chrome rocker-panel moldings.

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Finished in Roman Red with a red interior, the Hudson looks to be a jewel-like showpiece that the seller says has “outstanding” performance and drivability. The asking price is $54,950, which seems like a good deal for what appears to be an exceptional resto-mod custom.

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day

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Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.

9 COMMENTS

  1. I’m needing the R/L lower body molding for a 49-50 Hudson conv. coupe, 2 door.. this is the 2nd row of moldings from the bottom. Al 1(816)468-5507

  2. These Hudsons are now famous mostly as a result of the “Cars” movie in which they were “cool”. This restomod Hudson is also very “cool” .I love the Mopar engine upgrade especially because its not another “Chevy 350”. BTW, I’m a GM Chevy guy with a ’55 Wagon (350) , a “71 Chevy C10 4WD(350), and a ’66 GTO(Pont.400) in my stable. However thiese vehicles were downright “ugly” from the factory nd there is no way to wipe the ugly off. So I think it is a “cool” very high end restomod BUT still a very ugly car. Sorry!!

    • They aren’t the most attractive vehicle of the period, but they do have a similar silhouette to the 49-51 Mercury 2 doors. Over-all a neat “Resto-MOD.”

  3. should have left it alone these modified cars are a dime a dozen like 57 chevs and 57 t-birds but a prestine Hudson was a real jewel

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