Abandoned Car of the Week

A famous abandoned Studebaker

One of the most famous abandoned cars in the U.S. sits along Old Route 66 in the Painted Desert area of Petrified Forest National Park in Arizona. The rusted hulk of a 1932 Studebaker depicts the remains of transportation along the old east-west highway in the 30s and 40s. The Studebaker, reportedly donated by Frank and Rhonda Dobell of Holbrook, Ariz., is probably the most photographed abandoned car in the country.
(Photo by Ted Biederman)

The remains of a pre-war Buick

There's not much left of the front end of this 1940 era car, but we think it's a Buick. Buick was the fourth best-selling car in the country in 1940 with 278,748 units sold. This cannibalized car was found in an Arizona salvage yard.
(Photo by Becky Antioco)

Route 66 spectators

A 1950s Renault Dauphine and a Volkswagen Beetle reside side-by-side as they watch passing traffic on old Route 66 in Carterville, Mo. The rear-engine Dauphine was built from 1956 through 1967 with more than 2 million sold. (Photo by Jim Meachen)

International employed by Firestone

International Harvester introduced the R Series line of panel trucks  in 1953, the passenger version called the Travelall to do battle with the popular Chevrolet Suburban. In today's parlance it would be known as a full-sized SUV. International work vans were built on the same platform with the same dimensions and powered by an inline six-cylinder engine making 100 horsepower. This work van, found in Nevada, was employed by a Firestone dealership.
(Photo by Jim Prueter)

New Chevy design for 1953

Chevrolet was completely redesigned for 1953 coming in three trim levels — base One-Fifty, mid-level Ten-Ten and top Bel Air. The standard engine was a 216 cubic-inch, 3.5-liter inline six cylinder  making 92 horsepower. The redesigned Chevy was a big hit based on its annual sales of 1.34 million. This well preserved copy was found in Nevada. (Photo byJim Prueter)

A 3 Series in the weeds

The BMW 3 Series is a compact car built by the German manufacturer since 1975. This second-generation (1982-1994) 325 was found in an abandoned condition in eastern North Carolina. The second generation expanded the line from just a two-door, to a four-door, convertible and station wagon.
(Photo by Jim Meachen)

Double decker

A 1950 Packard rests on top of a 1949 Frazer in a Casa Grande, Ariz., salvage yard. Unfortunately, neither make was even close to the top of the heap at the turn of the decade. Frazer and Packard had both fallen on hard times. Packard's 1950 sales declined by more than 60 percent to 42,627 from 1949. Frazer managed only 21,000 sales in 1949 and would survive only a few more years.
(Photo by Jim Prueter)

A used up 1959 Ford wagon

The crossover of the 1950s, 60s, 70s and 80s was the so-called station wagon. One of the most popular was the 1959 Ford wagon that could carry up to nine people. Unlike today, manufacturers offered a full range of engines. For example, the '59 Ford could be purchased with five engine sizes ranging from an inline 6 making 145 horsepower to a massive 7.0-liter V-8 making 350 horsepower. Prices ranged from $2,565 to $3,075. This abandoned example was discovered in Arizona.
(Photo by Jim Prueter)

No longer fighting fires

Seagrave is the longest running manufacturer of fire equipment in the United States. And a 1960s example of a Seagrave fire truck was found in retirement in New Mexico. By the insignia on the door it was apparently used by the Vaughn, N.M., fire department. Vaughn is a small town of about 500 people in east-central New Mexico. (Photo by Jim Meachen)

An expressive GMC — With a friend

This very restorable 1960/61 GMC pickup was found in Arizona together with a friend — can you spot the "guard cat?" GMC pickups were totally redesigned in 1960 featuring for the first time a full-width hood, and an expressive "jet pod" grille. The grille design was used in 1960 and 1961 before being altered slightly in 1962. The GMC came with a choice of five V-6 engines with horsepower ranging from 150 to 205. (Photo by Jim Prueter)