At times, a vehicle is produced with the best of intentions, but simply cannot withstand the ultimate test: pleasing the masses and cornering a market. The Hudson Jet is one such example, and has become something of a black sheep in the Hudson Motor Company history. Often referred to as the “car that torpedoed Hudson,” as historian Richard Langworth dubbed it, since Hudson Motor Company went out of business shortly after the car’s sales fell short of its expectations. Though the car was not popular in its day, it is now a rare car due to its low production numbers, and many owners are pleased to have one.
Built with a high roof to leave room for gentlemen’s hats, the Hudson Jet was available as a two or four-door sedan. Exactly one convertible was produced, and was subsequently purchased by Hudson’s sales manager, Virgil Boyd, according to the Consumers Guide. The car was built as a response to the Nash Rambler, but failed to impress buyers, who were concerned about fuel economy. It was first produced in 1953, and lasted only two model years before being discontinued following the 1954 model year.
Only slightly over 14,000 units of the 1954 Hudson Jet were ever produced, and today, the number of survivors is small. Two bench seats made this classic car big enough to allow a family to travel, though like other models of its day, it did not contain seatbelts.
Do you own a 1954 Hudson Jet? Do you think it should have been more popular than it was? Share your thoughts with us in the comment section below.