Fooled By Hemmings: 1948 Chevrolet Fleetmaster – Comment Censorship!

by | Mar 2021 | Auction Observations, Under The Hood

March 27, 2021 Update – Coincidentally, the same day we featured this ’48 Chevy as a Craigslist Classifind, we discovered it was a brand new Hemmings Auction Listing.  Knowing that Hemming requires exclusivity two weeks before and during an auction, we asked the seller about their Craigslist ad and captured their candid reply. While Hemmings’ site moderator has since taken down this thread, they did not do it before we captured a screenshot of our question and the seller’s candida reply.  Shortly afterwards, we confirmed the seller pulled their Craigslist ad, likely at Hemmings request. Not only is this further proof of how long it takes for the “big” auction sites to list your ride, but it also brings into question how much Hemmings censors reader’s comments.  From our perspective, the moderator could have taken the high road by entering a comment in the thread saying they reminded the seller of their exclusivity policy that’s clearly posted on Hemmings’ site, and we would have been cool with that. Instead, they chose the low road and pulled this thread altogether:

Not all vintage Woodys were station wagon body styles. The Chrysler Town & Country two-door is likely the most well-known example.  A much lesser-known model is the 1948 Chevrolet Fleetmaster Country Club such as this burgundy over beige mohair example currently listed here on Craigslist in Mount Airy, Maryland with an asking price of $18,500. The Collector Car Market Review indicates the current asking price falls between this guide’s #2 “Very Good” estimate of $13,200 and its #1 “Excellent” appraisal of $20,100 before adding a twenty percent premium for the Country Club package. Similarly, the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool confirms the asking price falls between this guide’s #2 “Excellent” estimate of $16,100 and its #1 “Concours” appraisal of $25,600.

Please read the seller’s detailed description below as it provides a great synopsis of the history of this vintage of Chevrolet Fleetmasters.

The Periscope Films YouTube Channel has this 1949 Chevrolet promotional film where they talk about the importance of Community while featuring a 1948 Fleetmaster:

Based on the seller’s excellent description and photographs, this Country Club-equipped Fleetmaster appears to be a well-sorted example that is ready for show or go without excuses.

Here’s the seller’s detailed description:

“On the woody bandwagon,

In 1948, the Chevrolet factory authorized Chevrolet dealers to offer wood trim as an accessory called the “Country Club” package to compete against Ford Sportsman or the Chrysler Town and Country. That package was produced by Engineered Enterprises and cost $149.50.
The Country Club Coupe was the rarest Chevrolet produced in 1948. It was available for the Fleetline Aerosedan and the Fleetmaster. The kit included an ash door and rear fender framework with red mahogany inserts and stainless steel screws. Once installed, a regular steel coupe or convertible looked very much like a woody, but without the structural issues that made wood cars much harder to maintain.
Sources state that in the era, only a few Chevrolets were so equipped. Some estimates put the number at fewer than 100. But at just under $150, it was an expensive cosmetic add-on for an otherwise lower-priced car. It’s no wonder only a handful were delivered.
There are several suppliers of newly manufactured kits with prices in the $1,500–$2,000 range, but the reproduction kits also use Di-Noc inserts instead of real mahogany and ash pieces.
This 1948 California car is a rare 2-door Country Club Coupe, top-of-the-line Fleetmaster woody (protected with several coats of Epiphanes varnish, the same stuff used on antique Chris Craft runabouts.)

Exterior paint is a recent re-spay in the factory Oxford Maroon (code 375) that was the original paint color as indicated on the vin tag. The gorgeous finish is very glossy and shows very well. Interior seats, headliner, visor is done in beige corduroy cloth interior in like new condition. The wheel received the Argent Silver paint stripe option from the factory.

Rebuilt stock 1948 216 cubic inch inline 6-cylinder with 3-speed on the tree transmission. The engine and tranny are strong.

Full factory gauges for better engine monitoring work perfectly and are lit when the ignition is turned on. The speedometer is accurate and the odometer work showing 72,250 miles that I believe are original miles. Dome light, windup clock that keeps great time (if you remember to wind it up when you get in the car) and cigarette lighter are all functioning as they should.

The car is equipped with the optional heater and fan and they work very well. This very reliable car with a new 6 volts battery, starts every time and runs all day at 180 degrees even in the hottest summer days. It is not unusual for me to take my family for 50 miles trip on the weekend. Rare find with original owner’s manual.

Front and rear bumper have been re-chromed and are in like new condition. The original stainless is in very good condition. The chromed door handles, wiper mounts and trunk hinges are original and show some pitting but are in serviceable condition. I believe these items add character to the car.
Next owner can easily find replacements on Chev’s of the 40’s or the Filing Station. Excellent period correct whitewall tires with cool factory silver pinstriped rims including spare. All wheels have new Chevy hubcaps with beauty rings. Original hubcaps are in the trunk. This car won many trophies: Best of Show, Best of Class, etc..

Original car with fresh paint and period correct interior. Always garaged, maintained and pampered.

Recent maintenance 2020:

All fluid changed, (engine, transmission, radiator, rear differential, brake fluid)
Oil and filter 10W30
Transmission fluid change 90 W
Rear differential 75W140
Brake fluid DOT3
Air filter
Spark plugs cleaned and gap adjusted to 0.040
New brakes all around with new shoes, wheel cylinders, springs and clips, new master cylinder and brake lines and brake hoses)
New kingpins
New front bearings
New 6 volts battery

If you are familiar with the 216 ci engine, you’ll know it is a wonderful engine that will run forever if well maintained. Keep in mind, this is a 73 year old original car that drives, handles and stop like it did in 1948. The engine has a small oil leak coming out of the rear of the engine. It is not an immediate issue, but the new owner might want to have the rear seal replaced eventually. I just add a quart of oil every few months and that’s that. Most of the 216’s will have small oil seepage. (Check the forums). After we moved from California to Maryland in 2018, I really enjoyed taking the car on the country back roads enjoying the scenery at 45 to 50 mph and imagining the first owner doing the same in 1948…

Shipping
Buyer is responsible for shipping costs. I can cooperate with your shipper. This vehicle is advertised on other websites, so I have the right to end the auction early if it gets sold.
Payment
Payment is to be made in cash or personal check. Check will need to clear before the vehicle is released and the title is sent. If you are not sure about anything, please don’t assume – just ask. I’m very easy going and will help in any way I can.

Disclaimer
People have different opinions and expectations of older vehicles. It is your responsibility to personally inspect the vehicle or send a third-party inspector that will perform an inspection to your satisfaction. Remember, this vehicle is from the 1940’s, and even though I’ve tried my best to describe it, it can have some imperfections which I’m not aware of. You can also contact Ted York at Mt Airy Motors show contact info ), his shop has done the work on the car and Ted can attest to the quality of the car.”

Show or just go: What would you do with this Country Club Equipped Chevy?  Comment below and let us know!

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