Car: Ford Edsel Villager Station Wagon
What makes it special: The Edsel Villager was produced and sold from 1958 to 1960. Like the two-door Roundup and premium Bermuda station wagons, the Villager was initially built on a wheelbase shared with Ford’s station wagons, and, throughout its lifespan, shared Ford’s wagons core body stampings. The Villager and the Ranger were the only two model names that existed throughout the Edsel’s three-year life span as an automobile marque. It had Edsel’s distinctive horse-collar grille and boomerang taillights, along with the classic ‘50s two-tone red and white color combination, complete the wagon’s look.
What made it famous: The Villager represented the lower trim level available within the Edsel brand for station wagons, but differed from the two-door Roundup by being offered in six and nine passenger styles. The Villager was available in a four-door configuration only. Approximately 2,054 were produced. It is powered by a 303hp 361ci V8 engine mated to the one-year-only Teletouch push-button automatic transmission, and equipped with power steering and power brakes. Speed is monitored by a rotating flying-saucer-inspired speedometer. This wagon even has an optional compass, in case you lose your way. On the inside is a 45-rpm under-dash record player.
Why I would want one: Most people see the Edsel nose and think “ugly,” but I think “unique.” Love the style and color schemes of the 1950’s.
Fun fact: The Villager name resurfaced at Mercury on a woodgrained Comet station wagon from 1962 to 1967, and subsequently on similarly trimmed wagons in other Mercury series. From 1993 to 2002, the name was applied to Mercury’s version of the Nissan Quest minivan.