Friday, December 16, 2016

Extremely Cosmopolitan

I was driving around the furthest corner of Brooklyn where the edges of neighborhoods are bordered by marshes leading into Jamaica Bay when this beached whale presented itself. Gadzooks!
This improbable beauty is a 1950 Lincoln Cosmopolitan Sport Sedan in Admiral Blue.There weren't many produced (I found a production number of just 1,315 for the 2 door Club Coupe) and to find one today in NYC is crazy.
This has a slightly unnerving leer from the front. That wide grill not only cools the Flathead 337 V8 within but also contains a modern (for the time) fresh air ventilation system. The Flathead replaced the trouble-prone if awesome V12 from previous years! 12 cylinder engines can be smooth as silk when tuned perfectly but they are a handful to maintain. The distributor cap for a V12 looks like a flying spaghetti monster with all its wires coming out of everywhere.
This generation was introduced in 1949 and represented a vast leap from the timeworn designs carried over from pre and post WWII. The '50 Mercurys are some of the most popular cars for customization, usually by chopping the top and making each one into a Lead Sled. The Lincolns were always more luxurious than their sibling Mercury. In 1951 power windows became standard which was unheard of for the era.
Here we can see the headlights which are frenched from the factory (when something is frenched it means it is set into the body as opposed to attached to the exterior). The paint looks pretty correct for such an old car. Clearcoat wasn't a thing 66 years ago so the paint would have this thick look. Getting paint of this vintage to a show car shine requires lots of polishing by hand.
That jet hood ornament ushers in the Jet Age when airplane motifs became ubiquitous.
Those fuzzy dice are the worst. The interior is in great shape overall with seats and door panels in fine condition. This ride is fitted with the optional GM Hydramatic transmission! By 1949 the Ford motor company had to eat humble pie and order transmissions from their archrival as they hadn't developed one to that point.
There is a space for the original radio but with the knobs and station memory buttons missing I'm guessing the unit has been removed. You can just see the speaker grill under the dash.
Clean and clear style was the order of the day. Compare these understated taillights to those of 10 years later in the era of fins.
Here we see the bathtub shape in full display. The trunk, like everything in this ride, is massive.
I pulled over and asked some folks standing across the street if they minded if I took some pictures. The response was "yeah sure, it belongs to our neighbor. Maybe he'd want to sell it; he owes me money!".
The owner of this Lincoln pulled up just in time to hear this and they got in a huge cursing and screaming match all the while both being nice to me. It was totally bizarre and had something to do with an electric bill or something so I snapped my pics and took off. I did however learn that this car was from Southern California (which explains the condition) and that it was heading back there with the owner the following week. I can only assume it is there now so I was lucky to see it when I did.

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