Today’s car is a 1948 Chevrolet Fleetmaster Woody owned by Dan and Judy Dews. I photographed this car at the 23rd Annual Westchester Elks Charity Car Show & Chili Cook Off in which it won Best of Show at in 2020. The car is finished in Oxford Maroon with a Cognac vinyl interior, and the wood is framed in ash with mahogany side panels. It is newly powered by a Chevrolet LS3 with 430 hp, 6.3 liter, naturally aspirated, overhead valve (OHV) V8 engine, with sequential multi-port fuel injection (SFI) and is mated to a 700R4 4-speed automatic transmission with overdrive and a 3.70:1 rear axle gear ratio. Slowing this beauty down are power disc brakes in all 4-corners. It has Mustang II independent front suspension using coil over shocks. The rear suspension features semi-elliptical leaf springs and tube shock absorbers. The classic style steel wheels, trim rings and hubcaps allow the car to maintain that proper resto-rod look.
Dan, who had a career of finishing wooden boats, finished the wood on the car, and it is as nicely done as I have ever seen. Dan has owned the car for 15 years and decided to upgrade the drivetrain, suspension, electronics and added air conditioning for drivability and maintainability. Dan has the highest praises and recommends AVS Motorsports located in Oceanside, CA. AVS Motorsports
This body style was produced from until 1948. All GM woody bodies were built by subcontractors like Hercules, Iona, and Cantrell, and were installed at the factory. Though the body style changed in 1949, that was the last year they used real wood. From that point on, a factory produced stamped steel body that simulated the wood-framed style, and was used on Chevies between 1950 and 1954. The total production for 1948 Chevrolets was 775,982 units with 10,171 of them being Fleetmaster Station Wagons, of which it is believed that there are less than 100 in existence today. The MSRP was $2,013.00. The original published top speed was 73 mph with a 0-60 mph time of 24.7 seconds.
This is a beautifully modified woody wagon that has subtly maintained the stock appearance of the postwar era. What a great car to take to GM or Woody car shows, Cars & Coffee events, or just taking a nice leisurely drive to the beach for a picnic for 2. Thank you for riding along. Frank