My Classic Car: Harold’s 1947 Hudson Commodore 8 convertible

1947 Hudson but one equipped with some 1948-model features | Harold Yuma's photo
1947 Hudson but one equipped with some 1948-model features | Harold Yuma’s photo

In growing up in Michigan, I was fortunate to know my great grandparents. I especially liked my great grandfather’s 1947 Hudson sedan that he purchased new. I liked the styling Hudson had in those days. My great grandfather and I were really good friends and I enjoyed riding in that car.

In 1959, he drove me to the train station in it when I was drafted into the Army, (eventually into the Viet Nam war). His Hudson had only 30,000 miles on it at that time. Unfortunately, my great grandfather died at age 103 before I returned home and I never got to tell him that I wanted his car.

Sadly, I learned it had been sold in his estate.

Years later when I was financially able, I started looking for a similar car. Nothing seemed as nice as his Hudson so my search continued. I started following eBay and one day a beautiful 1947 Hudson came up for sale. It wasn’t the familiar 4-door Commodore sedan that my great grandfather had, but this was even better!

It was a Hudson Commodore 8 convertible, and with quite a history.

The story about the car was that the family that owned it always drove Hudsons, starting in the early 1930s. No other car was acceptable to them.

The mother was a teacher and right after WW2 she had been appointed principal of her school and with that promotion in mind, she asked her husband if she could have a convertible to drive to school.

Never thinking of purchasing another brand of car, he went directly to the Hudson dealer and ordered a “top of the line” Hudson convertible.

“Spare no costs,” he told the dealer.

He must have been an influential man where they lived. The Hudson dealer most likely knew him and accepted his requests. The dealer told him that gearing up production of cars this soon after WW2, required the time to re-tool to build automobiles again after Hudson had been building aircraft for the U.S. government. It would take some time to get a convertible as most people wanted closed cars. But they would get the car built as soon as possible.

It took almost nine months before the car was delivered, and because of the time it took, it would not be a 1946 Hudson but a 1947 model delivered only a few months prior to the introduction of Hudson’s new 1948 model.

Oddly enough, the car delivered included some items not available on a normal 1947-model Hudson. It included turn-signals, a vacuum activated type of automatic transmission and an 8-cylinder engine that was chosen from the line of 1948 model Hudsons, and it was painted gold, not the silver color that 1946 and 1947 engines had.

I was the high bidder on that eBay auction and still have the car. When I drive it I feel like my great grandfather is beside me saying: “Well done, kid!”

The convertible runs and drives great, like it did in 1947, and it stands in its place with the other newer Hudsons I own, another 1947 Commodore Six and three 1953 Hornets.

— Harold Youmans, Mission Viejo CA

8 thoughts on “My Classic Car: Harold’s 1947 Hudson Commodore 8 convertible”

  1. Thanks for the comment, Carey… It’s a great car never having been restored.

  2. I’m so happy for you Harold! I’m looking for a 1947, 1948 4 door Hudson Commodore like my Grandfather drove. As kids many fond memories riding in that car!

  3. As a former Hudson and Terraplane (1933 “8” rumble seat deluxe coupe”) owner I appreciate the story and the Hudson as well.
    If the reader is old enough to remember some of the first Hudson’s delivered after WWII had 2×4’s in place of bumpers until the correct ones were made available in an effort to get in on the post war sales frenzy. Nice semi rare convertible, Harold.

  4. My best friend during childhood and teen years was a Hudson collector. His father had been a Hudson dealer in our home area,
    Moline, Illinois. My friend purchased a 1941 sedan during early teen years. He later bought a 1949 two door, had it painted a deep red with a maroon color on the lower body. My friend’s family moved to California, and he became Dr. Jack Karstens, MD,
    and was employed by the United Air Lines maintenance base in San Francisco. The Hudson collection was expanded, along
    with some primo Chrysler products. The beautiful 1947 Hudson Commodore Convertible story brought back many fine memories from early, Hudson influenced years. During July of 2016, visited the Stahl auto museum near New Baltimore, Michigan, and saw
    their spectacular Twin “H” powered Hudson Hornet convertible. Wow, the emotions it produced. Thanks for the fine article about Harold’s 1947 Commodore Convertible.

  5. Nice history. My dad was the only Hudson dealer in Venezuela,(from 1938 to 1940 and from 1946 to 1954. Hudsons have been my dream car, but unfortunately I don’t own one , and can’t find one here in Venezuela. I wrote an article “Hudsons in Venezuela” that was published in the ” White Triangle News” (an Official Publication of the Hudson-Essex-Terraplane Club. Inc.) Volume 46 Number 5, May/June 2005 Edition.

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