The 1951-1953 Hudson Hornet is the most remembered Hudson of the postwar years, and one of the industry's all-time greats. Virtually unbeatable in stock-car racing through 1954, the Hornet continued to compete with some success even after the Step-down line came to an end with the Nash-based '55 Hudsons. Amazingly, this racing success was achieved with a six-cylinder engine -- the last performance six before Pontiac's late '60s overhead-cam engine.

"Twin-H Power" arrived for 1953 (twin carbs and dual manifold induction) along with the 210-bhp 7-X racing engine late that same year. These were early examples of factory "prodifying" that helped the likes of Marshall Teague and Herb Thomas dominate NASCAR and AAA tracks against ostensibly much more potent machinery.

Positioned just below the top-line Commodore Eight series for 1951-1952, the Hudson Hornet moved to the top for '53. The Hornet's legendary performance prowess gives it a big edge in collector appeal over the basically similar Pacemaker, Super Six, and Wasp models of this period.

Pluses
of the 1951-1953 Hudson Hornet:
  • One of the great postwar landmarks -- a true champion
  • Fine performance
  • Surprising handling
  • Quality
  • Luxury
Minuses of the 1951-1953 Hudson Hornet:
  • Step-down design looking dated by '51
  • Interior and some exterior details clumsily executed
  • Thirsty
Production of the 1951 Hudson Hornet:
43,656 (Conv estimates, 550; Hollywood 2d htp estimates, 2100)

Production of the 1952 Hudson Hornet:
35,921
(Conv estimates, 360; Hollywood 2d htp estimates, 2160)

Production of the 1953 Hudson Hornet:
27,208
(Conv estimates, 150; Hollywood 2d htp estimates, 910)

Specifications of the 1951-1953 Hudson Hornet:
Length, inches: 208.3/208.5 (1951-1952/1953)
Wheelbase, inches: 124.0
Weight, pounds: 3,530-3,780
Price, new: $2,543-$3,342 (U.S.)


Engines
for the 1951-1953 Hudson Hornet:

TypeSize
Horsepower
Years
sv I-6308 cid
145/160/1701953

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