We are counting down the Top 50 hot rods and street cars of all time that have made an appearance in a television series, or a memorable television episode. Starting from #50, and counting down to our #1 pick, follow along with our memories, and see where your favorite show lands.
15. The Mod Squad: 1950 Mercury Woodie Station Wagon
If you grew up between 1968 and 1973, chances are you (or your parents) watched “The Mod Squad,” a hip show about three unlikely, rebellious social outcasts posing as undercover cops. The series starred Tige Andrews as Captain Adam Greer, and Michael Cole as Pete Cochran, Clarence Williams as Linc Hayes, and Peggy Lipton as Julie Barnes.
The program saw its fair share of automobiles over its five season run, and since it was set in real time and right smack in the late Sixites and early Seventies, plenty of musclecars and street machines were featured alongside the long, heavy boats of the same era.
Just an example of the array of prominent cars included: a 1964 Dodge A-100, 1970 and ’71 Challengers, 1970 Coronet, Charger, and 1972 Monaco; 1969 Ford Custom 500; 1970 Lincoln Continental; 1969 Mercury Marquis; 1970 Plymouth GTX, 71 Sport Fury; and 1964 Volkswagen Bus. Of course, there were countless others that made special appearances during chase scenes, or that were placed in the background.
The car we are highlighting in this spot on the countdown is an unusual suspect: a 1950 Mercury Woodie Station Wagon. Unusual, as it is a two-door, versus the standard four-door. On the program, the Woodie belonged to Pete’s character, and is destroyed in season two when the brakes go out in a chase and it veers off a cliff, bursting into flames.
The wagon was only offered as a two-door model for three years, 1949, 1950, and 1951. Mercury records indicate only 13,602 units were produced total, with the fewest in 1950 with just 1,746 turned out from the factory. Base power was courtesy of Ford’s 2.55.4 cubic-inch flathead V8 that delivered 110 horsepower at 3,600 rpm, and was mated to a three-speed automatic transmission.
The devil is in the details, and the wood siding on these cars did not disappoint. Center panels were of mahogany and trimmed in white ash, which continued through to the interior door panels and on the tailgate. Set against an ebony steel body, the woodwork stood out like the shining star it was.