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Motion Pictures Automobile Styling for 1949

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Jive-Bomber, Jan 24, 2019.

  1. Jive-Bomber
    Joined: Aug 21, 2001
    Posts: 3,212


    Jive-Bomber submitted a new blog post:

    Automobile Styling for 1949


    Continue reading the Original Blog Post
  2. I'll take the almost Green Hornet sedan at 5:08, very interesting styling cues, almost like a Marvel comic book car.
  3. Bluedot
    Joined: Oct 26, 2011
    Posts: 295


    Wow, amazing to watch those clay guys work. I wish I was even half that good with just a minor Bondo repair. I noticed at about 6 mins in they used the term "forward look", which would become a Mopar motto about 8 years later. Also noticed that on the first car driveoff, the gal managed to dip the right rear wheel into the small ditch while turning out of the driveway. Surprised they didn't cut that.
    Fascinating video - Thanks, J-B!
  4. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 17,332

    from California

    things were sure different in the old days. wonder where all that artwork is today.
    1stGrumpy likes this.
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  5. Very interesting video, thanks for posting it. In the 50's as a child, I belonged to a youth project by GM that included a monthly publication show casing a lot of the experimental development, it's name has long since faded from memory but I imagine that it was designed to stimulate our young minds with the hope's of one day our becoming the "future" engineering pool that they could tap for employment.
    Things have certainly changed haven't they?
  6. 302GMC
    Joined: Dec 15, 2005
    Posts: 5,727

    from Idaho

    "Our father, who art in styling, Harley be thy name" ….
    apenglish64 and J. A. Miller like this.
  7. Okie Pete
    Joined: Oct 29, 2008
    Posts: 3,018

    Okie Pete

    Thank you for posting . A very informative film . I want one of the Red three wheelers . lol
  8. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 8,994

    Rusty O'Toole

    By 1949 styling had been on hold for 7 years. Last new cars were 1942 models, and after 1945 most car makers continued to make 1942 cars, with slight trim changes. This made sense as the main problem was to get as many new cars into the hands of the public as possible, plus there was the problem that development of new cars had been dropped in favor of war production. But in early 1949 the postwar seller's market came to an end, and competition returned.

    There were a few all new cars before 1949. The 1948 Hudson, which was planned for their 1943 model but introduced 5 years later. The 1947 Studebaker, "first by far with a postwar car" and the 1946 Kaiser and Frazer which had no prewar counterpart.

    Ford's 1949 Mercury and Lincoln were also 1943 designs, dusted off and produced years after they were designed.

    All these cars ( except Studebaker) were of the "upside down bathtub" school of design which took over from the "streamline" school. The 1948 Packard could be added to the list, though it was a heavily face lifted 1942 design.

    The new trend for 1949 was the "three box" school, typified by the 1949 Ford and the whole 1949 Plymouth, Dodge, DeSoto and Chrysler line, which only lasted a short time before the "chrome and tailfin" era of the fifties took over.

    So to answer the original question, Why did American car design take such a huge leap forward in 1949? Styling had been on hiatus since 1942 and it took until 1949 for the backlog of new car orders to be filled, and competition returned to the market. Until then they could sell all the cars they made and didn't bother to come out with new designs, except for a few independents.
  9. That is such a great film
  10. jnaki
    Joined: Jan 1, 2015
    Posts: 3,638


    In 1949, my dad realized that the two little growing boys were filling up that back seat of the 41 Buick fastback and decided that he needed a bigger car. Well, he got one and surprised us all. It was the biggest car we had ever seen. A 1949 Buick Roadmaster, 4 door sedan in all black. My brother and I were swimming in the back seat and both of us could almost fit into the rear window package tray for that popular bubble look.

    This giant car had smooth lines and big white wall tires. It was a big family car for 4 people. Now, my mom and dad did not have to pull the seat forward for the two boys to get in the back. Just, jump in the back seat and go. This design was really cool for us as there was so much more room to mess around in the back seat.

    Our family doctor that we met in 1953 had owned his 1949 Cadillac 4 door sedan from way back in 49. It had that cool flip gas filler in the rear taillight housing. Those two cars were very big for us and the ride was road hugging/ heavy. With their Fedora grey hats, the old guys, both looked the part as gangster, movie extras.


    From 1949 to 1953, my dad tried to park his 49 Roadmaster in a single car garage in the back of our old Craftsman House. It had 3 stalls with wooden barn doors. As much as he tried, he could not maneuver that big Buick into one of those single car garages. So, he left it outside on the street.
    upload_2019-2-11_4-37-7.png similar big Buick sedan
    When we got a “newer” house that was built in 1946, it had a two car garage and driving that big, black, Buick fit nicely, even with the narrow driveway. That lasted for the rest of 1953, then, my dad bought home, a colorful two toned 53 Buick 4 door sedan.

    My brother and I actually liked the 1949 styling better than the 53 sedan. It went from smooth fenders and body to an fairly upright box. But, one thing that 53 had going for it was a blue and white two toned color from the factory. We thought of the 49 as a big black rocket, something that Flash Gordon would be seen driving…ha!
    Ron Funkhouser likes this.
  11. BrerHair
    Joined: Jan 30, 2007
    Posts: 4,260


    Cool video, thanks. Some serious highfalutin literary prose in there.
  12. mopacltd
    Joined: Nov 11, 2008
    Posts: 727


    My brother just brought a '49 Olds fastback home. Less motor and trans an very minimal rust

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