Skip to main content

1952 Hudson Hornet NASCAR news, pictures, specifications, and information
Coupe
 
The Hudson Hornet dominated stock car racing and won over 80 NASCAR races between 1951 and 1955. The Hudson's low center of gravity, 'mono-built body' and center point steering contributed to the car's outstanding cornering and handling characteristics. The 308 cubic-inch, six-cylinder engine developed great torque at low engine RPM. This engine, combined with overall road-ability, plus the fact these cars were over engineered and over built, made them unbeatable in competition on the dirt and the very few paved tracks of the 1950s. Hudson was the first automobile manufacturer to get involved in sports car racing. By NASCAR rules, Hudson dealers made 'Severe Usage' parts available to the public as they were used in NASCAR competition. In response to driver requests, Hudson engineers developed dual carburetors systems (Twin H-Power), dual exhaust manifolds for racing only, several optional camshafts, heavy-duty suspension parts and engine mounting kits. There were 132,000 Hudson Hornet models produced from 1951 to 1954; the Club Coupe amounted to only 7% of production.

This is the former Herb Thomas NASCAR stock car. It was given to Herb Thomas by the Hudson Motor Car Company and raced in 1952 and 1953. Hudson was the first automobile company to realize the value of racing for improving the performance and durability of their products. The program was administered by Hudson engineer V.W. 'Vince' Piggins. He would leave Hudson after American Motors was formed, and head up Chevrolet's performance division when the 'small block' Chevrolet V8 models were introduced in 1955.
Coupe
 
In the early days of NASCAR, to say Hudsons were dominant would be a huge understatement. Their domination of the series was truly unbelievable. What made it even more impressive is that they did it with an inline-six cylinder engine. The 308 cubic-inch Hornets won 27 of 34 races in 1952 and 22 of 37 races in 1953.

The popularity of these cars came to light when the 'star' of the movie 'Cars' was chosen to be a representation of these famous racers. Through Doc Hudson, the legend of the Fabulous Hudson Hornets has been carried forward to the up and coming generation of enthusiasts.
The Hudson Motor Car Company came into existence in 1909 and produced vehicles until 1957. It was created by Howard Coffin, George W. Dunham, and Roy E. Chapin. Based in Detroit, Michigan, the company had it most successful year in 1929 when it produced and sold over 300,000 vehicles. From 1942 through 1945, the Hudson Corporation did its patriotic part by manufacturing war materials such as naval engines and aircraft parts, during the Second World War. After the war, the Company had its share of ups and downs before it merged with Nash Motors in January of 1954, when it became known as American Motors. The Hudson plant closed while the production of Nash vehicles bearing Hudson badges continued. The brand name ceased to exist after 1957.
In 1951 Hudson introduced the Hornet. The Hornet sat atop a modified version of the Super Six chassis and outfitted with a 262 and 308 cubic-inch inline six-cylinder power-plant. It dominated the NASCAR circuit in the early fifties. In 1952, it won 27 NASCAR Grand National races, 22 in 1953, and 17 in 1954.

The car sat low, giving it an excellent center of gravity. Its flowing, curvy lines and enclosed rear wheels gave it aerodynamic features. The car sold well for the company when first introduced but slowly faded into the history books. The Big Three auto manufacturers were able to change the faces of their model line-up every year, the Independent Auto Manufacturer, Hudson was not. So by the time the Hudson was discontinued, it was feeling and looking its age.

A wonderful car with seating for six and featuring an L-head straight six coupled with Twin-H Power carburetors was enough to breathe life into the Hudson Company for only a few years. The company had lasted through two World Wars and the Great Depression but it would ultimately find its demise at the hand of low-cost, mass-produced automotive giants.

By Daniel Vaughan | Mar 2006
For more information and related vehicles, click here

FIVE FORDS FINISH TOP-10 IN TEXAS NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES RACE
 Ford Finishing Order: 3rd – Carl Edwards 4th – Greg Biffle 5th – Joey Logano 7th – Aric Almirola 9th – Brad Keselowski 18th – Trevor Bayne 19th – Marcos Ambrose 26th – David Ragan 31st – Casey Mears 32nd – David Gilliland 40th – Ricky Stenhouse Jr. GREG BIFFLE – No. 16 3M Ford Fusion – 'It was a tough night. Our car definitely wasn't as good as it was last year here in the spring, but we battled back. I got a pit road speeding penalty. I don't know what happen...[Read more...]
MARK REUSS NAMED DAYTONA 500 HONORARY PACE CAR DRIVER
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Mark Reuss, General Motors North America president, who was instrumental in bringing the new Chevrolet SS to NASCAR, will be the honorary pace car driver Sunday for the 55th running of the Daytona 500. He will be behind the wheel of a 2014 production Chevrolet SS. 'Leading the Daytona 500 starting field to green driving a 2014 Chevrolet SS pace car on one of the most famous race tracks in the world will be a special honor for me,' Reuss said. 'I can't wait to...[Read more...]
FORD RACING HAS ENTHUSIAST NEEDS COVERED WITH A FULL LINEUP OF CRATE ENGINES AND PERFORMANCE PARTS FOR 2013
•New 5.0-liter Aluminator V8 crate engine is now available to racers who want to build their own Mustang Cobra Jet •Restorers and modders can choose affordable V8 power ranging from the X302D to the 460-cubic-inch Z460, the biggest small-block ever offered by Ford Racing •Builders in search of modern powerplants can select 3.5-liter V6 and 2.0-liter four-cylinder EcoBoost® crate engines •Ford Racing Performance Parts offers a full range of suspension, brake, transmission and body upgrades ...[Read more...]
Allgaier Looks For Different Ending To Road America Finish At Sargento 200
Even though he has made only two starts at the legendary four-mile road course, it was last season's race at Road America that will forever be ingrained upon the memory of Justin Allgaier. After the 2011 event was extended past its original distance of 50 laps, Allgaier found himself in the lead during the final green-white-checkered finish attempt, hoping he had enough fuel to get him to the checkered flag. Unfortunately, the caution flag was waved half way to the white flag, thus ending the ra...[Read more...]
New Chevrolet Racecar to Debut for 2013 Season
The countdown to the debut of Chevrolet's next NASCAR Sprint Cup Series racecar is underway. Chevrolet announced today that for the 2013 season, Team Chevy will be racing a vehicle based on a new nameplate to the brand's lineup. Taking advantage of the new NASCAR rules, which allow manufacturers to display more of their brand identity in their racecars, the new Chevrolet racecar will closely resemble the production version. Both cars will be unveiled in the coming year. ...[Read more...]
Commodore
Hornet
Italia
Model 20
Model T
Model U
Pacemaker
Railton
Rambler
Super Six
Terraplane

Image Left 1951 Hornet Series 7A1953 Hornet Image Right
© 1998-2014. All rights reserved. The material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.