1956 Ford F-100 Half Ton / Specs, Photos and More

Featured in this article is a fine looking 1956 Ford F-100 Half Ton Pickup. This is a milestone vehicle which incorporated some new styling and more options.

1956 ford f 100

1956 Ford F-100

The F-1 Becomes the F-100

The second generation Ford F-Series were redesigned for 1953 with a more integrated look. The second generation F-100 also had a longer wheelbase, with longer front and rear leaf springs to improve ride smoothness. The front suspension was moved back to give a tighter turning radius.

The year 1953 also was Ford's 50 Year Anniversary. On the F-100, it was the horn button that designated Ford's Golden Anniversary with a special gold rim that was lettered with "50th Anniversary 1903-1953." Of major significance for 1953, Ford changed the names of the various pickup models. The F-1 became the F-100, the F-2 and F-3 now became the F-250, and the F-4 now became the 1-ton F-350. The second generation F-Series offered options such as a dome light, lighter, arm rests, sun visors and even a radio.

The 1953 new second generation model offered a much better windshield area which was some fifty-five percent larger. Also, the glass was curved rather than flat. The rear window stretched the entire width of the cab adding a greatly improved rear view and the side window ledges were lowered to better help drivers during parking. You could also have the choice of the Standard cab or the Deluxe cab. The Deluxe offered stainless drip rail molding, a sun visor on the passenger side, driver and passenger armrests, a cigar lighter, chrome vents window moldings, twin horns, foam padding for the seats and chromed grille "teeth."

1950's ford trucksThe 1956 Ford F-100

The 1956 F-100 is of the second generation which went from 1953 through 1956. The 1956 F-100 is a one year body design which was made to compete against Chevy's Task Force Pickups.

Chevy's new trucks were good looking vehicles and offered a new V-8 adding big competition to Ford. . The 1956 F-100 was built with vertical windshield pillars and wrap around windshield. This differed from the sloped pillars and angled windshield of the 1953-55 models. The 1956 F-100 also offered a larger wrap around back window as an option. Also, in 1956, seat belts became an option and beginning that model year Ford offered the very rare "Low GVWR" (gross vehicle weight rating) versions of each of it's models.

The 1956 F-100 also had electric windshield wipers as opposed to the vacuum operated and the electrical system went from six to twelve volts. The 1956 model had a redesigned dashboard and a Ford Lifeguard Steering Wheel which placed the center hub further away from the driver's chest which added to driver safety.

1956 Ford F-100 Pickup Specifications

The 1956 F-100 was built with a standard 223 cubic inch Mileage Maker Inline Six which delivered 137 horsepower. There were three engine versions of the 272 cubic inch V-8 offered as an option. These were a light-duty with a 2-barrel carburetor, a heavy-duty with a 2-barrel carburetor, and a heavy-duty with a 4-barrel carburetor putting out 167 horsepower.

Three transmissions were available for 1956...a three, four or five speed manual and an automatic. The automatic, the "Ford-O-Matic" option for 1956 was the first time in history a Ford truck was available with an automatic transmission.

second generation f series trucks

More window visibility for the 1956 F Series Trucks

Front  suspension were an I Beam front axle and leaf spring and rear were a semi-elliptic six-spring design.

Front and rear brakes were hydraulic drum.

Total Ford F-100 production for 1956 was 137,000 units.

Please see the additional Auto Museum Online articles found on the links below...

 

1946 Ford Half Ton

1939 Ford Half Ton

1937 Diamond T Pickup

Reference material for this article includes...Pickup Trucks : A History of the Great American Vehicle by Justin Lukach.....Ford Truck Chronicle by Auto Editors of Consumer Guide.....Ford Pickup Trucks, 1948-56 : Development History and Restoration Guide by Paul G. McLaughlin.

1956 ford f series truck specs

56 F-100 dashboard

1956 Ford F-100 Collector Values

All pickup trucks from the 1950's are popular collector vehicles. Many changes occurred especially during the early 1950's as with the second generation Ford F-Series Trucks. Designs were more modern looking and new more powerful engines were being introduced.

Values for the 1956 Ford F-100 range all the way from $20,000 to $50,000 depending on overall condition, originality, mileage and degree and date of restoration.

(Article and photos copyright 2017 Auto Museum Online)

1954 Cadillac Coupe deVille / All Details, Photos

The automobile featured in this article is a beautifully restored 1954 Cadillac Coupe deVille Series 62. An elegantly designed vehicle with relatively small tailfins, especially compared to the types of tailfins Cadillac would come out with during the last few years of the decade.The Series 62 was offered in a variety of two and four door styles that included sedans, coupes, and convertibles.

1954 cadillac coupe deville

1954 Cadillac Coupe deVille

New for 1954

For 1954, Cadillac touted it's design as being as distinguished as the Cadillac name itself.

A more contoured front bumper along with a new grille and a new lowered hood were the first thing a Cadillac buyer might notice.

Also, the introduction of a new "V" and crest. The car's fenders had straighter lines both front and back and the tailfins go upward more sharply. Add to this new rounded exhaust ports and a two inch overhang across the windshield which is visor like and helps with sun glare and snow and ice accumulation in that upper portion.

The 54 models also had larger parking and turn signal lights plus new rectangular design of the chrome-framed vent wings. In conjunction with the vertical pillar posts this addition provides exceptionally strong roof support. An Eldorado type wrap around windshield was seen on all models.

The 1954 Cadillac Coupe deVille came with a Hydra-Matic automatic transmission as standard equipment as well as power steering. Air conditioning, power brakes, fog lamps, radio and electrically operated front seats were among options at an extra cost.

54 cadillac models

Front end changes for the 54 Cadillac

Henry Ford, Cadillac and General Motors

The Cadillac brand came out of dispute between Henry Ford and his investors in 1902. A breakup ensued and the investors were essentially left with the hard assets of the factory. The investors felt they had little choice than to try to sell what assets remained of the now closed plant when a man named Henry Leland, a manufacturer in Detroit entered the picture.

Henry Leland was producing engines for Oldsmobile at the time and was more interested in reopening the factory than keeping it closed. Leland, who just happened to have invented a new engine, convinced the old Ford investors that his new engine was stronger than that of Olds and he could even build them at a lower cost. The auto factory remained open and the new automobile to be produced would be named the Cadillac. The Cadillac name for this new car was the namesake of the explorer and  founder of Detroit, Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac.

General Motors, which was acquiring nameplates would purchase Cadillac in 1909. As they say, the rest is history. Cadillac would continue on and become the luxury automobile and SUV division of General Motors Corporation.

Cadillac had always proclaimed that their goal was to make their name "the standard for the world". In a big way they did accomplish this. To be sure, Cadillac had it's competitors along the way and still does. There was Lincoln, Imperial and a host of others during the 20's and 30's (think Auburn, Pierce-Arrow, Cord) but Cadillac always kept their reputation intact as a quality, stylish, well engineered and luxurious automobile. Even at their relatively high prices,

The Cadillac Crest

It's interesting to note that Cadillac had forty four revisions to it's crest during the past century. Of historic importance is the fact that the first emblem was the family crest of Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, the founder of the city of Detroit. This would make the emblem actually older than Detroit itself.

1954 Cadillac Coupe deVille Specifications

The 54 Cadillac Coupe deVille came with a 331 cubic inch V-8 delivering 230 HP.

Transmission was an automatic four speed.

1954 cadillac tail fins

Relatively small tail fins compared to what would come from Cadillac during the late 1950's.

Brakes were four wheel hydraulic drums.

Front suspension were independent coil springs with a longitudinal leaf spring in the rear.

The overall outside length was 223.4 inches, height 61.0 inches, width 79.8 inches with a wheelbase of 129.0 inches. Estimated curb weight was 4,520 lbs.

Total Cadillac Series 62 production for 1954 was 58,024 units which was down about 12,000 from the previous year.

See additional Auto Museum Online articles found on the links below...

1958 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible

1951 Cadillac Series 61 Sedan

1941 Cadillac Convertible Coupe

Reference material for this article and some good reads include...The Cadillac Story: The Post War Years by Thomas Bonsall.....Cadillac: A Century of Excellence by authors Robert Leicester Wagner...Cadillac: The Tailfin Years by Robert J. Headrick Jr.

cadillacs of the 1950's1954 Cadillac Coupe deVille Collector Values

As we have said several times, most 1950's American cars are popular collector cars. Cadillac had some very creative designs during the decade and models from each year of the 50's have a story to tell. Look at any of the models and you just knew it was a Cadillac.

Top 1954 Cadillac models include the Eldorado which depending on condition and restoration factors can be near and well into six figure valuations. The 1954 Cadillac Coupe deVille, again based on condition and restoration details, can run from $30,000, $45,000 on up.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)

 

 

 

The 1958 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible / Specs and History

The beautifully restored automobile featured in this article is the 1958 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible. As you can see the car is absolutely stunning inside and out.

1958 cadillac eldorado convertible

1958 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible

The Cadillac Motor Company

An interesting piece of automobile history is that Cadillac was formed by the breakup of Henry Ford's company in 1902 due to a dispute between Ford and his investors.

The investors were trying to sell the assets from the closed factory when instead they decided to continue making automobiles by the urging of Henry Leland a Detroit manufacturer who also happened to have built a new engine. Leland convinced the investors that his new engine was stronger than that of Olds and he could produce them cheaper. The Cadillac name chosen for this new venture was the namesake of the explorer and  Detroit's founder, Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac.

General Motors would go on to purchase Cadillac in 1909 and eventually Cadillac became the luxury automobile and SUV division of General Motors Corporation.

cadillac eldorado convertibleThe Cadillac Eldorado

The Cadillac Eldorado was a top of the line model. The Eldorado was introduced in 1953 and lasted continuously to 2002. The 1953 Eldorado was a limited edition convertible.  The 1958 Cadillac Eldorado shown here is of the third generation models which were built from the 1957 through 1960 model years.

The Cadillacs of the 1950's are remembered by their vast display of chrome.

Harley Earl and the new 1958 Cadillacs

Automobile design historians are well aware of the long tenure at General Motors by design chief Harley Earl. In short, Earl was hired by Alfred Sloan to be in charge of the styling section to design LaSalles. That worked out well and Earl was then put in charge of GM's new "Art and Styling Studio" where he would head design for GM's entire line. Essentially Harley Earl joined General Motors as a head designer and remained so for over thirty years.

Harley Earl was the head designer of the team working on the new 1957 Cadillac designs. These designs would mark the 1957 and 1958 Cadillacs. One of the major changes to these third generation models were the double headlights on each front side. The 1959 models would have much larger tail fins and perhaps the largest ever.

The 1958 Cadillacs received a modest facelift. Cadillacs for 1958 were basically carryover models from 1957 with a facelift on all but the Brougham. There was a new grille with multiple round "cleats" at the joining of horizontal and vertical members. The grille was wider and the bumper guards were set lower to the parking lamps. New quad headlights were seen on all Cadillac lines and small chrome fins were placed on the front fenders. Tailfins were somewhat less pronounced in 58 and trim attachments were revised. The Cadillac name was seen, in block letters, on the tailfins of Series 62 base models. On the sides of these models were five longer horizontal windsplits placedahead of the unskirted rear wheel housings.

The 1958 Recession Automobile Market

Sales were relatively poor in 1958. The reason was not the automobile itself but rather a recession that the country was in. Cadillac produced a total of 121,700 vehicles for the 58 model year.

The 1958 recession brought about the worst car sales year since World War Two. Overall American new car sales decreased 31 percent from 1957 levels. Fortunately, the recession ended during the last half of the year and sales picked up for 1959.

1958 Cadillac Eldorado Specifications

The 1958 Cadillac Eldorado had a 365 cubic inch V-8. The engine delivered 312 HP and was used in all Cadillacs that year. Eldorado performance was substantially improved with the adoption of three two-barrel carburetors, which boosted output to 335 HP.

cadillac tailfins

The 58 Eldorado's distinctive tailfins

Transmission was a 4 speed Hydra-Matic.

Wheelbase was 129.5 inches with an overall length of 221.8 inches.

A total of 7,825 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible Coups were produced for 1958.

See additional Auto Museum Online articles found on the links below...

The 1951 Cadillac Series 61 Sedan

The 1958 Cadillac Coupe De Ville

The 1931 Cadillac V-16

The 1958 Cadillac Collector Car Values

Cadillac has long been a popular collector car. The Cadillac's of the 1920's and 1930's have very distinctive and luxurious styling of that era.

1958 eldorado prices

58 Eldorado dashboard

Cadillac during the 1950's were known for plenty of chrome and some of the most advanced accessories available. Many of these accessories that were optional on most automobiles were standard equipment with Cadillac. Power windows and seats, power antennas were what the 50's Cadillacs offered as standard equipment.

The 1958 Cadillac found itself in the era of tail fins. Some larger than others but the tail fin was a common theme in almost all American cars from 1956 to 1960 and Cadillac was the automaker with some of the biggest tail fins on the road.

Current values for 1958 Cadillacs remain strong, in particular with the convertible models. Top end prices for the restored original Eldorado Biarritz Convertible can be in the $150,000 area. For the Series 62 Eldorado Convertible about half that at $75,000. These prices reflect models in perfect condition inside and out. Series 62 hardtops and coupes may be found in the $25,000 to $38,000 range for top priced models.

Reference material for this article and some good reads include...The Cadillac Story: The Post War Years by Thomas Bonsall.....Cadillac: A Century of Excellence by authors Robert Leicester Wagner...Cadillac: The Tailfin Years by Robert J. Headrick Jr.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)