The 1940 Ford Deluxe Convertible Coupe may be one of the prettiest cars that Ford ever produced. This car has the styling of Ford Motor Company's Bob Gregorie's design department along with a lot of influence from Edsel Ford. Edsel Ford's main challenge at the automaker was to convince the elder Henry Ford to approve innovations.
The Styling of the 1940 Ford
Bob Gregorie, formally Eugene T. Gregorie, was a designer who worked for Ford a couple of times. A high school dropout, Gregorie began his designing career as a yacht designer on the east coast, moved to General Motors in Detroit during the Great Depression, was recruited to Ford Motor by Edsel Ford and departed the company after Edsel Ford's unexpected death in 1943.
After being hired at Ford in 1932 Gregorie soon became head of Ford's design department in 1935 and worked closely with Edsel Ford. One of Gregorie's first assignments with Ford was to design a car for the European market which he did with Ford's Model Y.
The 1940 Ford had clean styling which was actually introduced in 1939 and was freshened up for the 1940 model year. Major changes were on the front end along with a new interior and dashboard. The car is noted for it's sleek roof curves and it's split angular windshield as well as it's fully integrated grille. The 1940 Ford was one of the first streamlined cars from Ford. It was also one of the first V-8 cars in it's price range.
Bob Gregorie was lured back to Ford in 1945 but left again for good a few years later. Interestingly enough, the yacht designer turned automobile designer ended up returning to boat designing after his years at Ford Motor.
A Popular Restoration Vehicle
Today, you may very well see several of the 1940 Ford Coupes at auto shows with a good number of them modified into hot rods. The hot rodding with the 1940 Ford Coupe took off after World War Two.
The 1940 Ford is one of the most collectable cars of the pre war era. The cars are so popular that Ford now has licensed complete reproduction bodies. These all steel reproduction Ford bodies are licensed by Ford Restoration Parts. Hot rodders can order these bodies with a modified firewall.
Since 1940 Fords in good enough condition to restore are not exactly easy to find the reproduction bodies are becoming quite popular among hobbyists. Ford unveiled their 1940 hot rod using a reproduction body at the Specialty Equipment Market Association show in Las Vegas. As of this writing, the basic 1940 Ford body shell sells for around $12,000. Adding doors and deck lids might put another $4,000 on the price tag.
1940 Ford Deluxe Coupe Specifications
The eight cylinder 1940 Ford Deluxe Coupe shown in this article was produced with an L-head 221 cubic inch 85 horsepower V-8 engine.
The transmission was a three speed manual. The transmission could be either floor mounted or column mounted. The brakes were four wheel hydraulic drums which were also on the 1939 Fords.
The car's wheelbase came in at 112.0 inches.
The 1940 Ford Coupe had a weight of just under 3,000 lbs.
The car seated two passengers and there was a small jump seat in the rear of the interior.
Total Ford Motor production for 1940 was 541,900 vehicles. Out of this total 23.700 were Convertible Coupes and 20,200 were Business Coupes. A total of six production Ford models were available for the 1940 model year.
Total production numbers for all models for 1940 for Ford was 542,000 and for Chevrolet 764,000.
Two additional Ford articles you may find interesting on the links below...
1940 Ford Coupe Prices
As mentioned above, the 1940 Ford Coupe was and is a popular collector's car. An original restored 1940 Ford Coupe is going to have an asking price of perhaps $38,000 to $45,000 plus. A 1940 Ford Deluxe Convertible Coupe may be in the $65,000 to $70,000 plus range depending on degree and quality of restoration. These are mint condition prices. Any 1940 partly restored Ford Coupe not in showroom condition will sell for less.
1940 Ford original Coupes are rare for really two reasons. There weren't those many built and so many of those that were produced were modified into hot rods. This is the major reason that a fully restored 1940 Ford Coupe or Convertible Coupe in mint condition and as an original passenger vehicle can attain high selling prices.
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(Article and photos copyright 2013 AutoMuseumOnline)