The Powell Sport Wagon — Petersen Automotive Museum


Observed in retrospect, the Powell also mirrored a exceptional point of view on write-up-war automotive development. Crafted among the retreating shadow of Environment War II and the dawn of the American submit-war financial state, the pickup represented a mix of pre- and article-war financial realities. In the means of its construction, the dwelling-developed motor vehicle, crafted out of current parts, spoke to an period of wartime rationing and elements shortages, in which objects like metals employed in auto construction had been scarce and citizens were compelled to craft their individual products in area of these they would frequently locate on keep cabinets.

In its style and design, and the incredibly point that their firm had endeavored to current market a new automobile to the public, however, the Powell brothers’ company reflected the optimistic attitude of the burgeoning mid-century American economic climate. While Europe would proceed to truly feel the economic devastation of Planet War II very long immediately after its conclusion, by the mid-1950s when the Powell Sport Wagon was introduced, the American overall economy would knowledge a period of time of rapid advancement, in which the Gross Countrywide Item (GNP) would develop to virtually 250% its pre-war dimension. A concurrent, and insatiable, purchaser desire for new motor vehicles would generate the generation of new, thrilling cars like the Chevrolet Corvette, which was, by the way, showcased on the very protect of the February 1956 issue of Motor Trend in which Woron would chronicle his sights of the humble Activity Wagon.

With these two perspectives as context, Channing and Hayward Powell set out to develop a exclusive and, as Woron would describe, to some degree mythical auto that would sell for below the “magical a person-grand determine.” Sadly for the corporation, like most makers who sought to generate such a motor vehicle from scratch, “costs mounted upward like a mushroom pushing its way through the cracking earth.” However the Powell brothers projected in Motor Craze that improved output figures would decreased the expense of their Wagon, at a price tag of a mere $95 above their target, the Powell Sport Wagon was fairly a noble attempt.

By Kristin Feay

Images by Bob D’Olivo and Walt Woron

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