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The Custom remained the most wanted two-door wagon in 1954.
Although the company referred to the new four-door as a compact, with a 108-inch wheelbase it really was what would later be termed intermediate size. Compact on the outside but nearly as roomy inside as conventional cars, the Rambler sedans boasted exceptional fuel economy, plus ease of handling and parking -- qualities that suburban housewives were sure to appreciate.
Although reclining seats had been available on Ramblers since 1952, Nash's famed twin-bed option had remained exclusive to the Ambassador/Statesman line. But with the addition of the four-doors, twin-bed seats were now offered, although only on those models. All four-door Ramblers came with the 195.6-cubic-inch engine.
Also debuting was a new Country Club hardtop in lower-priced Super trim. It included Weather Eye and a radio but was fitted with hubcaps in place of wheel discs, and lacked the Custom hardtop's external spare tire carrier.
Sometime after the regular introduction, several additional models were added to the Rambler series. A lower-priced four-door Super was certainly a worthwhile addition, but the really big news was to be found in two other models.
Interestingly, they bracketed the 1954 lineup, one taking position as the highest-priced Rambler, the other as the lowest-priced. These were the Custom Cross Country station wagon, a four-door wagon in top-level trim, and the Rambler Deluxe two-door sedan.
Rambler wagons had always been popular, but the public response to the four-door wagon proved especially encouraging. Despite its position as the most expensive Rambler, buyers loved it.
The new wagon was a stylish and very practical car, perfectly suited to young families. Built on the 108-inch wheelbase, it used the same basic body as the sedan but featured an unusual and striking roofline. Designed by Bill Reddig, the roof panel continued the slope of the sedan's roof, dipping down before leveling off, then continuing rearward.
Reddig's purpose in including the unconventional dip in the roof line was twofold. The company had spent a great deal of money on body dies needed to produce the four-door sedan's rear doors and the stampings that made up the door framing, so Reddig's roof allowed those dies to be economically used for the wagon as well. Further, Nash Styling wanted a look that was different, to set its cars apart from others.
To reduce the visual effect of the dipped roof, Reddig suggested making a roof rack standard equipment. A simple affair stuck on the rearmost section of the roof, the rack completed the look.
Find information on the low-cost 1954 Rambler Deluxe model on the next page.
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