What kind of car?


#1

I’m trying to help out a friend identify the make and model of a car his father from Chicago owned based on a picture he has of it. That’s unfortunately all the known information. Any ideas what it could be?
Thanks!


#2

To judge by the fenders, it could be a 1948 GM model, Olds or Pontiac. Chevrolets had short front fenders that did not extend into the doors. The pictue is rather vague.


#3

It is definitely a GM product.
Because the photo is so fuzzy, I cannot say with absolute assurance, but I am about 95% sure that it is a Chevrolet from the '40s. Most likely, it is a '46 or '47 model, but it could date back as far as 1942.


#4

Doc

I am going to disagree with you on the point that Chevies had “short front fenders that did not extend into the doors”. All of my reference books show Chevies from 1942-1948 with fenders whose line did extend into the doors. Prior to '42, what you stated is corrrect. Post '42, it is incorrect.


#5

VDC, I stand corrected. Our family had a 1941 model, which had short fenders and was one of the first without running boards. I should have checked my “Encyclopedia of American Cars” first.


#6

This is an A body GM car from 1942-48. The A body was used on the Chevrolet, and the LA series Pontiacs and the Oldsmobile 66. The side trim tells me that it is neither a Pontiac nor an Oldsmobile. I believe that this is a 1946 Chevrolet FleetMaster 4 door. It’s definitely a 1946-48 Chevrolet, but the trim and what I can see of the grille leads me to believe that it is a 1946.


#7

I’m trying to help out a friend identify the make and model of a car his father from Chicago owned based on a picture he has of it. That’s unfortunately all the known information. Any ideas what it could be?
Thanks!


#8

Very helpful the comments! Now, thanks to all who posted, my friend knows a bit more about his family history. Your help is much appreciated.


#9

The side body does look like a GM product but the grille does not look familiar since its blurry.

It is not a 42-45. Civilian car production was suspended for WWII. Production was resumed in ( I believe) 46 using old body designs. I think new bodys were finally released in 48???


#10

Production of automobiles was suspended in 1942. There were some 1942 models produced. Production resumed in late 1945 and the automobiles were labeled as 1946 models. With the exception of the Oldsmobile 90 series and the Cadillac (except for the model limosine), GM released its new bodies in 1949. The Oldsmobile 90 series and the Cadillac brought out new bodies in 1948, with the Cadillac 75 staying with the prewar body. The Buick Special retained the prewar body style through the summer of 1949 and then brought out a new body that was labeled as the 1950 model.
Studebaker released a new body style in 1947, Hudson released its new model with the stepdown design in 1948. In mid 1947, Packard released a new series with the “pregnant elephant” look. Ford had released all its new 1949 models by June of 1948. Chrysler did not introduce a new body style until March of 1949 for its models. There was an early series 1949 in the Chrysler models that were relabeled 1948 models.
Interestingly, Chevrolet brought out a new body for its pickup trucks in mid 1947. Ford and I believe Dodge brought out new bodies in 1948 for their pickup trucks.
The reason I am almost certain about the car in question being a 1946 Chevrolet is that a colleague of my dad had the winning ticket at an Illinois county fair in the summer of 1946 and drove away in a new 1946 Chevrolet. At that time, cars were hard to get, so this colleague was very lucky. I remember that we all got to ride in the new 1946 Chevrolet. I think that I can detect from the picture the chrome piece at the beltline that distinguished the more upscale Fleetmaster models from the lower line Stylemaster models.
Please don’t ask me about today’s cars–I can’t tell one car from another for models made after 1965.


#11

It could be a Chevy Fleetmaster or a Stylemaster without seeing the grill it’s hard to say which one it is.


#12

The grille was the same on the Fleetmaster and Stylemaster. There is a chome strip along the beltline that I don’t think the Stylemaster had. There really wasn’t much difference between the Stylemaster and the Fleetmaster. The top of the line Chevrolet of this period was the Fleetline. It came in a 2 door fastback and a 4 door Sportsmaster. The Sportsmaster had a different style trunk–more like that of the 4 door Buick. There were chrome strips on the front fenders of this series. However, even the Fleetline and Sportsmaster had the same grilles.