Showdown – Ford Battle Wagon Battle

1965 Ford Country Squire station wagon for sale1955 Ford Ranch Wagon Station Wagon for sale
In our last Showdown, the Super-Shag Dodge walked away with it by a handy margin. We’re still creeped out. On to more tasteful times…
To many, there’s no beating the aesthetics of cars from the 50s. They’ve got large-radius curves, acres of chrome and dashboards that will certainly kill you in a crash with detail befitting a fine watch. Of course, they they also tend to be overpriced, underpowered, poor-handling land barges. Some of us prefer a car with more modern feautres… say, something from the mid-to-late 60s. Such is the conflict in today’s Showdown…

Up first is what looks to be a gorgeous 2-door 1955 Ford Ranch Wagon. It’s sporting a 272ci Y-Block V8 and a three on the tree. The black paint looks good, and the one interior shot shows us a sweet looking steering wheel and a front 1/3 of the bench seat that looks to be in good shape. The good news is, at least one axle’s been upgraded to disc brakes. All in all, it’s a sweet ride that’s managed to last 55 years without being derby-ed or given a 460c.i. + AOD swap. On one hand $7500 is a lot of money. On the other, $7500 is pretty cheap when you’re talking about (mostly) original rides from the 50s.
Craigslist LA (Even though the car’s in San Diego)
hoopty wagon 1965 Ford Country Squire for sale1965-1967 represent a golden era for cars. They’ve got the slimer, sharper styling of the first half of the 60s, combined with the advances of the later 60s. Advances? In this case that means things like air conditioning, three speed autos, power steering and brakes (which might even be front discs!) and the occasional coil spring rear suspension. Case in point: this 1965 Ford Country Squire. Residents of the automotive internet might recognize this as Mr Jalopy’s famed HooptyWagon. Turns out he unloaded it a while ago, and the current seller is the next owner.
It’s got all the “modern” features listed above, along with a custom interior the coolest custom “wood” siding you’ll ever see. Power comes from a 4-barrel 390 breathing through a hearty exhaust. At $3500, it’s less than half the cost of the ’55 Ranch Wagon, but definitely misses out on a bit of that 50s charm.
Craigslist LA
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21 responses to “Showdown – Ford Battle Wagon Battle”

  1. Alff Avatar

    You could do much worse than drive either of these but for me the choice is as easy as 1, 2, 3.
    1 color paint trumps fake woodgrain, even cool handpainted fake woodgrain.
    2 doors better than four.
    3 on the tree, baby. The joy riding kids in these parts won't even know how to drive it.

  2. dragon951 Avatar

    Oh Ranch Wagon, you had me at "deathtrap."

  3. njhoon Avatar

    55 for me.Nothing against the 65, I like it but having to choose between the 55 and 65, got to go with the 2 door.

  4. Goingincirclez Avatar

    I've always loved the classic straightedge lines of the 60's wagons, and that '65 is truly excellent (paint job aside).
    However, that '55 is downright sinister in black, and the Y-block is a classic hi-po rod swap befitting this choice. For $7500 you don't need to change a thing, and have something unique and beefed up.
    Of course, for that price you could buy the '65 and de-hooptify it with plenty of coinage to spare for other goodies…
    Still, I gotta call this one for the '55.

  5. Han_Solex Avatar

    That's a tough one. The Ranch Wagon wins for me on looks, but it's a lot more expensive and not formerly owned by a minor pseudo-celebrity. Plus, the Hoopty Wagon has wood paneling. I'm still voting Ranch Wagon, but it's close.

  6. Tripl3fast Avatar

    '55. Add Lake pipes and fuzzy dice and a pin up girl. Yeah that sounds about right.

  7. Maymar Avatar

    I love the stacked-headlight Fords. Between that, and the half-priced factor, it's hard for me not to choose the '65. Although, the '55 really needed to be a wagon to haul all its badassery around.

  8. muthalovin Avatar

    I like my wagons like I like my beans: Ranch Style.
    Seriously, the Ranch Wagon looks to be cared for lovingly by every owner. Squire, not so much with the love, more like lust.

  9. BrianTheHoon Avatar

    Country Squire, hands-down. And I wouldn't change a damn thing; it's perfect as is!

  10. Novaload Avatar

    No decision. I learned to drive in a 65 Country Sedan (no wood) –burgundy with white top. I don't think you ever forget the car you learned to drive in, for good or ill.
    And the 55-57 Fords have never been my faves. I don't know why. Don't get me wrong, I'd take that in a heartbeat–but I'm a sentimental fool for the 65.

  11. lowmiles Avatar

    Country Sedan. Cheaper and oozing with mid-60s slab-sided machismo.

  12. RacinG73 Avatar

    For me, it was pretty much rigged to go with the more modern ride. After all, it was half the price – all the wagon.

  13. Tomsk Avatar

    I love me some Country Squire, but 2-door wagons with three-on-the-tree are knockout punches.

  14. Age_of_Aerostar Avatar

    Is there a reason why I can't see where to vote (besides my stupidity?)

    1. Age_of_Aerostar Avatar

      ok, nevermind ,that time it showed the poll instead of the results.

  15. Tim Odell Avatar
    Tim Odell

    Wow…the voting's close this time.
    29 to 22 in favor of the '65 as of right now.

  16. superbadd75 Avatar

    Give me the '55. It's just too gorgeous to pass up. I can't say I'd leave it as it sits now, but it'd be pretty close. Black is beautiful, but I'm also thinking old-school flames, torq thrust wheels, and of course, MOAR POWAH!

  17. coupeZ600 Avatar

    Kind of off-topic, but back when I learned to drive, power-steering was fairly rare (non-existent on any car/big truck I drove) and when performing slow-speed maneuvers such as backing or parking, you learned to lean your opposite shoulder towards the wheel (right shoulder to turn the wheels left, left shoulder to turn right) and reach up under the inside of the top of the wheel with that arm and grab it, palm up, so you could use your body weight for extra torque. So what's that inner chrome ring (horn) on the Ranch Wagon for? My Volvo 145 has one inside the entire wheel, and all I can figure it's for is to activate the horn while I'm parking and gotten all tangled up in it. Is it simply so you can hit the horn with your thumbs rather than go to all the work of hitting the center of the wheel, like almost every other car ever made?

    1. coupeZ600 Avatar

      Wow, just noticed that the '65 has a horn-ring-thing too…. Maybe the people they marketed Wagons to did use the horn more often than they parked or backed-up……. Is it just a Wagon thing? And what do you call that damned thing, anyway?

    2. Mike_the_Dog Avatar

      You must be a young 'un. Back when I was a kid all cars had these horn rings. I think the theory was that if you didn't have to take your hand off the wheel, you'd be "safer". For supremely annoying placement causing unintended operation and attendant frustration, it's hard to beat the "rim blow" horns of the late sixties and seventies. A flexible rubber strip on the inside rim of the steering wheel was the horn switch and you can bet you'd honk the damned horn every time you moved your hand on the wheel.

  18. FuzzyPlushroom Avatar

    I can't vote.
    On one hand, I'm a sucker for two doors, black paint, and pure class.
    On the other hand, I consider the mid 1960s to be the pinnacle of automotive styling, and station wagons are my favourite things 'cause they're made of wood paneling paneling wood paneling wood paneling paneling.