If you find a Mercury that has not been chopped and dropped, I won’t be surprised — I’ll be amazed. An unmolested Club Coupe is a rare sight these days, but they are out there if you look hard enough.

Most of these were modified into Hot Rods after a mildly customised ’50 model starred on the big screen alongside James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause — but even in original form, these two-doors sure do have it going on. The 1946-51 cars were designed by Ford’s chief stylist Eugene Turenne Gregorie, and the low-priced 1950 Club Coupe set sales records with 334,081 finding happy homes. It was the very same year that Mercury sold its one-millionth car.

It was swoopy and sleek and had a new front end with a toothy vertical grille (it sure wasn’t a dressed-up Ford anymore) and the cabin featured a new sweep-style speedometer while the gauges were incorporated into rectangular cut-outs. It packed a radio, heater, a rear window wiper, power seats and power windows.

Even though it retained the dated Flathead V8, it made a healthy 110 horsepower which was one of the highest rated engines in the medium-priced field (it was mated to a three-speed manual with an optional automatic) but the Hot Rodders soon found ways to get even more power out of it. The suspension featured front coil springs (leaf springs at the back) and other body styles included a four-door saloon, convertible, and a woody station wagon.

Prices can reach up to Dh180,000 and if you find one that hasn’t been customised, leave it that way; original cars don’t just look better they’re worth a lot more too.

 

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