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This Is How Much Classic Cars Cost in the 1950s—and What They’re Worth Today

Drivers could get the ride of their dreams for a real steal in the 1950s.

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Chevrolet Bel Air 1954Reminisce

Chevrolet Bel Air 

1955 price: $1,987 

Current Price: Up to $49,600 (Source NADAguides) 

American automakers were booming at midcentury. More than 8 million vehicles sold in 1955. The 1955 Chevy Bel Air, prized today for its smart design, featured an optional overhead V-8, power steering, power brakes, and air conditioning. Buyers could choose a two-door wagon, four-door sedan or a convertible. This vintage ad dates to 1954. These vintage retro cars will remind you how cool cars used to be.

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Studebaker Sedan Reminisce

Studebaker Sedan 

1955 price: $1,885 

Today’s value: Up to $19,200 (Source NADA Guides) 

In 1955, Studebakers put power at the driver’s fingertips. Two-tone paint and wraparound windshields are classic era stylings. The cars also came with “newest of the new air-conditioning.” See how many classic cars you can name.

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Oldsmobile 88 Fiesta Reminisce

Oldsmobile 88 Fiesta 

1957 price: $3,541 

Current value: Up to $219,000 (source NADAguides) 

Sleek design and advanced features made 1950s cars faster, more comfortable and fun to drive.  This super-rare wagon is valued by collectors today because few of the vehicles were made. This spacious family car was also big on style. Here are 13 things you’re doing in your car—but shouldn’t.

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Ford Sunliner Convertible Reminisce

Ford Custom 

1950 price: $1,511 

Today’s value: Up to $16,600 (Source NADAguides) 

With sofa-wide seats, a jewel-box interior and plenty of luggage space, the Ford Custom was definitely “a carload of fun.” Plus, Ford promised their cars would stay looking new, with colors baked on to keep their “showroom complexion.” These are the cars you should buy used (and some you shouldn’t).

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Plymouth Belvedere Reminisce

Plymouth Belvedere 

1954 price: $2,145 

Today’s value: Up to $18,000 (Source NADAguides) 

With glowing new colors, like this bold yellow, and brilliant chrome, the Belvedere was top of the line for Plymouth in 1954 The cars offered “no-shift driving” and power steering.  

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Dodge Coronet Reminisce

Dodge Coronet 

1950 price: $1,927 

Today’s value: Up to $10,200 (source NADAguides) 

The 1956 Dodge Coronet was an affordable, but stylish, full-size car. Customers didn’t have sacrifice leg room to save money. And a variety of body styles were available, from 2-door and 4-door sedans to a “dashing convertible.”  

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Pontiac Catalina Reminisce

Pontiac Catalina 

1950 price: $2,127 

Today’s value: Up to $37,700 (Source NADAguides) 

 Pontiac promoted the 1950 Catalina as an affordable and powerful automobile that was “the most beautiful thing on wheels.   

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Chrysler Windsor Reminisce

Chrysler Windsor 

1950 price: $2,329 

Today’s value: Up to $14,550 (source NADAguides) 

This vintage ad highlights the lovely 1956 Chrysler Windsor in “stardust blue and cloud white.” With pulse-quickening power from the V8 engine and a push-button automatic transmission, drivers would take control of the road. 

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Cadillac DeVille Reminisce

Cadillac DeVille 

1950 price: $3,523 

Today’s value: Up to $45,000 (Source NADAguides) 

While a Cadillac DeVille might not dazzle your eyes as much as a Harry Winston necklace, this advertisement, circa 1953, promises that the car would add a great measure of happiness to your family’s daily existence.  

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Buick Roadmaster Reminisce

Buick Roadmaster 

1950 price: $1,909 

Today’s value: Up to $18,500 (Source NADAguides) 

This vintage ad from 1951 promoted the dynamic features that made the Buick Roadmaster a smart buy, including fireball power and self-energizing brakes.  

Originally Published in Reminisce