Formerly owned by film director David Lynch and used in the film "The Straight Story." Mostly original wagon with freshened interior and great-running Blue Flame Six. Great colors, honest old wagon, ready to enjoy.
This pretty 1956 Chevy 210 wagon is in largely original condition, save for fresh upholstery on the seats and a few paint touch-ups here and there. These are its original colors, of course, and the India Ivory over Onyx Black combination will always look good, no matter how long you keep this heirloom wagon. It’s got its share of bumps and bruises that tell the tale of time, but nothing that requires immediate attention save for perhaps a tailgate hinge that’s been tweaked and doesn’t quite close flush anymore. The finish still shines up well and as a car with a known history and mostly original paint, you know there’s no half-hearted workmanship hiding underneath. Is it perfect? Nope, and it’s not priced like a trailer-queen, either. But all four doors open and close nicely the hood latches without being slammed, and the soft gloss of the Magic Mirror acrylic enamel is impossible to replicate with today’s paints. The chrome and stainless is in great shape, with the bumpers showing their age but no critical damage. Don’t restore this car, just enjoy!
The interior, as I mentioned, has been reupholstered at some point. The gauges are all operational and in good order, although the glass lens on the speedometer has cracked but that’s an easy fix. There’s a Motorola Volumatic AM radio in the center of the dash which powers up but doesn’t make sound, but the heater is powerful enough to drive you out of there on anything but a sub-zero morning. The original door panels are quite nice and the carpets are probably replacements, because they’re just too nice (those in the cargo area are surely original and show some age-appropriate fading). The headliner is likewise extremely nice, still bright white and not sagging or brittle. The cargo area is just as big as you remember, nicely finished and still ready to get to work hauling stuff from the hardware store or luggage on a road trip.
Now don’t scoff at the 235 cubic inch “Blue Flame” six living under the hood, because it’s a total over-achiever. Thanks to the PowerGlide’s torque converter, it steps off the line with vigor and pulls the wagon up to 60 MPH without any drama at all and it’s happy to cut through modern traffic without becoming a liability. It fires easily without a lot of drama and idles nicely with a buttery-smooth 6-cylinder soundtrack that’s pleasing in its own right. There’s correct light blue engine enamel clinging to the block and while it’s not in show condition, it’s really not bad at all with no leaking oil stains or other serious issues. A recent tune-up means there are fresh plugs and wires, the fuel system has a modern filter, and there are new hoses and clamps for the cooling system. The carburetor still inhales through its heavy-duty oil bath air filter and a period accessory bug screen hangs on the radiator.
Underneath, it’s original, so don’t be expecting to show it with mirrors under it—it’s grungy. On the other hand, all the mechanical systems have been well-maintained and properly serviced so it tracks straight, the brakes feel confident, and even the exhaust system has just the right sound, not too loud but a bit of a grumble at idle. 4.11 gears out back mean it’s not made for 80 MPH highway cruising, but that’s part of why the six feels so lively and it’s so turbine smooth that it’s happy to spin along at modern highway speeds without issues. The suspension rides well for something designed to carry a load and it sits right, indicating that the springs are in good order. Standard steel wheels were painted to match the body and carry hubcaps and a set of older G78-15 wide whitewall tires.
The colors are great, the interior is welcoming, and we just can’t argue with the way this handsome wagon drives. Perhaps you like the idea of a thrifty six or maybe this is the foundation of a spectacular wagon build, either way, you’re going to enjoy driving it. And the interesting film history is a nice bonus that probably doesn’t add value but does make this car a lot of fun to show and discuss at cruise nights. We like this wagon more than we expected, and if you come see and drive it, we’re pretty sure you will too. Call today!
For more details and photos, please visit www.HarwoodMotors.com