Goodnight Raleigh - a look at the art, architecture, history, and people of the city at night

The Most Fascinating Car in Raleigh

Hidden in an auto shop off of West Johnson Street (near an abandoned DeSoto and Chrevrolet) lies a 1957 Ford Country Sedan station wagon. What makes this car particularly unique is that it is the result of combining the front ends of two identical cars. That means two steering wheels, two radios, two sets of headlights, and so on.

Two station wagons were chosen because the pitch of the roof was just right to be flat once both cars were joined. The emergency brake on each end doesn’t function as a brake; rather it is used to lock the wheels in place for whichever end will serve as the rear. Although it has only one engine, it can drive in either direction, if put in reverse.

If there are two drivers, the car can crab walk, dog walk, drive diagonally and nearly sideways as well as other unique car dance moves as a result of having four wheels that can turn. It was built here in Raleigh, and has been in several local parades.

Although it is street legal, it hasn’t been driven since about 1994.

An ad for a 1957 Ford Country Sedan station wagon

Looking at what this car used to look like, I can’t help but wonder what happened to rear sections of both cars. It seems like they could be combined, to create a camper trailer that could be towed by the car with two front ends.

The car was created by brothers Linwood and Roger King in the late 1950s. Roger’s son Phil was kind enough to give me a bit of the history of it.


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