1957 Ford Fairlane Convertible / Specs, Model History

The automobile featured in this article is a great looking 1957 Ford Fairlane Convertible.

1957 ford fairlane convertible

1957 Ford Fairlane Convertible

The Ford Fairlane was produced between 1955 and 1970. The automobile was named after Henry Ford's 56 room, 31,000 square foot Fair Lane estate in Dearborn, Michigan, a Detroit suburb.

According to HenryFordEstate.org..... The estate along the Rouge River included a hydro-electric powerhouse and dam, a greenhouse, a working farm built to scale for their grandchildren, an indoor pool, skating house, staff cottages, bowling alley, and a pony barn, as well as a private garage and laboratory for Henry. The vast gardens and landscape were designed by famed architect Jens Jensen".

The 1957 Ford Fairlane / New Style and Improved Power

The 1957 model year was a good one. All of the major automakers were adding new designs and the era of car fins was in full stride. Just prior to 1957  Chevrolet was known as the car with styling and performance. The 1957 model year upset this to a degree. Ford introduced what some might say was the most beautiful automobile of the decade. The Ford Fairlane was completely restyled for 1957. The Fairlane had a bigger, weightier and sportier new body, with a lower-profile "cowbelly" frame. The Ford Fairlane didn't have as much chrome as the Pontiac or Chevrolet but the car looked futuristic in many ways.

1957 ford fairlane specificationsThe combination of the new body style, smaller wheels, and newly designed chassis lowered the total height of the car by four inches and lowered the center of gravity.

Along with great styling, the Ford Fairlane received increased power with it's Y-block engine. The successor to the Flathead engine, the Ford Y-block V-8 engine delivered far better performance. The 57 Y-block engine was found under Ford's first hood that opened from the back end of it.

Trim lines for 1957 included the base "Custom", "Custom 300", "Fairlane", and the top of the line "Fairlane 500". The two "Custom" trims offered were built on a 116.0 inch wheelbase.

Handling was improved for the 57 Ford Fairlane with a lower stance and revised suspension.

The 1957 interior was entirely new. A new instrument panel showcased a large sweeping speedometer with a fuel and temperature gauge located at each end. Seat covers, as well as door panels, were also redesigned.

The 1957 Ford Fairlane ended up being a big success with 637,161 vehicles sold.

1957 Ford Fairlane Specifications

Ford offered a variety of engines for 1957. These included a 223 cubic-inch “Mileage Maker” six-cylinder, to 272, 292, and 312 cubic-inch Y-block V-8s. Improvements in the Y-block for 1957 included larger valves, a higher lift cam, and a large-bore intake manifold. All 1957 engines were essentially the same as in 56 except tuned for more power.

Transmission choices were a three speed manual or a two speed automatic.

Brakes were four wheel drum.

Front suspension was unequal length upper and lower control arms with coil springs. Rear suspension was longitudinal leaf springs.

Dimensions for the 57 Fairlane included a 118.0 inch wheelbase. Overall length was 207.7 inches...width 79.0 inches...height 56.2 inches...and an average weight depending on V-6 or V-8 of 3,400 lbs.

New car price in 1957 was $2,500-$2,600.

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1957 ford tail fins

New fin styling for 57

References for this article included...Ford Fairlane 500 Skyliner, 1957-1959 (Classic Motorbooks Photofacts) by author Jerry H. Magayne.....Ford Fairlane Performance Portfolio 1955-1970.....Ford Motor Company Archives.

The 1957 Ford Fairlane Collector Car

In general, the 1950's produced some terrific collector cars. The 1957 model year was arguably one of the better ones. Ford made great strides in the design and performance departments including building their first hardtop convertible and the Ranchero which was essentially a good looking pickup with passenger car styling. The 57 Chevy Bel Air became an iconic car of the 50's and designs in general took another step forward in modernization. Car fin styling was at the forefront in 1957 but these would eventually fade away in the very early 60's.

1957 ford fairlane dashboard

Newly designed dash for 57

As of this writing, current values for the 1957 Ford Fairlane Sedan range from about $14,000 to $20,000 for very good to excellent condition vehicles. Highest values for the Fairlane models are the hardtops and convertibles in the $25,000 to $30,000 range.

Fairlane 500 Sedans are generally in the same range as the Fairlane Sedans. The highest values Fairlane 500 is the Skyliner Hardtop Convertible in the $50,000 area and the Sunliner Convertible in the mid $40,000 area. These are general estimates based on sales and obviously will vary due to overall condition and mileage plus age of restoration.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)


1965 Ford Falcon Station Wagon / All Model Details, Photos

The automobile featured in this article is a 1965 Ford Falcon Four Door Station Wagon.

1965 ford falcon wagon

1965 Ford Falcon Four Door Wagon

Ford Motor Company produced the Ford Falcon from 1960 to 1970. It should be noted that Ford Motor in Australia did produce the Falcon past 1970.

Ford also produced a two door wagon. Ford made many different types of Falcons. These included sedans, convertibles, Falcon Sprints, the Ranchero, an Econoline Passenger Van and of course the two types of wagons. The top trim level for the 65 Falcon was the Futura series.

The 1965 Falcon's were of the second generation models. A major redesign took place for the 1964 model year which gave the vehicle a more squared and modern appearance. The Ford Mustang came out in late 1964 and was essentially built on a Falcon frame. Ironically, it was the popular Mustang that pretty much caused the Falcon to disappear in 1970.

ford falcon wagon specsThe Ford Falcon Model

When the concept of the Ford Falcon model hit the drawing boards, the goal was to create a good selling economy compact. In fact, compact economy automobiles were important class beginning that year. Styling originally took a back seat. In 1960 the engine was simply a 144 cubic inch six with 90 HP. A V-8 would be introduced to the Falcon in 1963. The Falcon first came out with two- and four-door sedan body styles to be followed shortly after with two- and four-door station wagons along with Rancheros.

Interestingly enough, in 1963 Ford turned to building a few Falcons specially for European Rally's with the intention of changing the car's image from stodgy to something more sporty. The result was the Ford did pretty well in Europe during 1963-64 with the Falcon capturing several wins and second place finishes.

The 1965 Falcon Wagon

On the design standpoint, the 1965 Ford Falcon Wagon carried the new more squared design introduced in 1964.

The Ford Falcon Wagon was a good looking automobile and was considered economical to own. The new car base price for the 65 Ford Falcon Wagon was about $2,300. The Falcon Wagon was advertised as giving a smooth and comfortable  ride  Ford compared the smoothness to a ride in a big sedan.

1965 Ford Falcon Four Door Wagon Specifications

Several engines were available in 1965 for the Falcon wagons. These included two L-head sixes, at 200 cubic inches, and 223 cubic inches with 116 and 138 HP respectively, and a 260 cubic inch V-8 rated at  260 HP.

Transmission choices included a three speed manual or an optional Cruise-O-Matic automatic.

Dimensions included a wheelbase of 109.5 inches, an overall length of 190.0 inches, height of 54.9 inches, width of 71.6 inches. Curb weight varies slightly by two or four door model but the average is about 2,765 lbs.

Total Ford production for the 1965 model year was 2,171,000 vehicles. Out of that number there were 186,000 Falcon model built. Out of that number there were a total of 14,900 Falcon station wagons produced. The majority were four door wagons where only 4,900 two door wagons were made.

65 ford falcon station wagonFord Falcon Station Wagons Collector Valuations

We believe that the Ford Falcon, particularly during the first half of the 1960's, is an collector car. This is the era prior to and at the time of the Mustang introduction.

Looking at 1965 Falcons as an example, the entire line is relatively inexpensive for someone wanting to start a collection. The highest valued model would likely be the two door convertible with the top prices ranging from about $14,000 to $20,000.

The 65 Falcon Wagon top values are in a range from about $7,000 to $11,000. Both the two and four door wagons fit in this same range.

falcon wagon dashboard

Falcon Wagon dash

The Ford Falcon Sprint is a car that had a lot in common with the Mustang and at first was in netter supply at dealers than the Mustang. The Falcon Sprint is a sporty vehicle with power and compares favorably, by some, with the Mustang. Remember, they were building Mustangs on Falcon chassis.

There are many Ford Falcon enthusiasts and an excellent resource for anyone wanting to learn more about the Falcon may want to connect with the Falcon Club of America (www.falconclub.com).

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)


1935 Ford Deluxe Fordor Beauty / Photos, Specs

The automobile featured in this article may be the nicest looking 1935 Ford Deluxe Fordor Sedan you'll find anywhere. This automobile is a real head turner. The 1935 Fords were the Model 48's which replaced the Model 40A's.

1935 for fordor specs

1935 Ford Deluxe Fordor Sedan

The New 1935 Design

Ford Motor made changes to their 1935 V-8. (The V-8 from Ford was first produced in 1932 with the Model 18.) These included moving the engine eight inches forward, increasing the size of the passenger compartment, decreased hood length and making the grille even with the front fenders. The fenders themselves were much more rounded.

Moving the grille forward actually gave the vehicle a more modern look. The windshield was also more sharply sloped. Ford named this new makeover as the Center-Poise Ride.

Two trim lines were offered for 1935, the Standard and Deluxe. The Deluxe models had chrome accents and the Standards did not. Ford marketed their 1935 models with the phrase..."Greater Beauty, Greater Comfort, and Greater Safety.”

The original 1935 design was minimally changed each year beginning in 1936 until 1941 when an entirely new design was introduced. The new 1941 design was relatively short lived since all civilian car production ended in February 1942 due to the Second World War.

1935 ford fordor deluxe photos

More modern look than the 34 models

The entire list of 1935 Ford automobiles produced include...

  Deluxe Roadster
  Deluxe Phaeton
  Deluxe Coupe 5 Window
  Deluxe Tudor Sedan
  Deluxe Fordor Sedan
  Coupe 5 Window
  Coupe 3 Window
  Tudor Sedan
  Fordor Sedan
  Touring Sedan
  Convertible Sedan

1935 Was A Banner Year For Ford

The year 1935 was very special for Ford Motor in as much as they overtook Chevrolet in sales. It was the first time this happened since 1930. As mentioned above, the space inside the vehicle was increased by using a boxed side rail frame and increasing the distance from the firewall and the rear axle. The 1935 model's doors were larger, making access easier. The cars also offered a new roll-up window device.

1935 Ford Deluxe Sedan Specifications

This automobile is powered by a 221 cubic inch Flathead V-8 with aluminum heads. The engine delivers 85 horsepower which was the same upped HP that came out with the 1934 models. The four cylinder engine was finally discontinued in 1935 leaving the Flathead V-8 to power all 1935 Ford models.

An interesting side note regarding Ford's V-8's of the early 1930's involves the infamous bank robber Clyde Barrow of the Bonnie and Clyde duo. Supposedly, Clyde sent a letter in 1934 directly to Henry Ford in praise of the powerful new Ford V-8 which enabled him to outrun many police vehicles of the day. Ironically, the 1934 Ford V-8 ended up as the car riddled with a hundred bullets that ended the lives of Bonnie and Clyde.

Gearbox was a three speed manual.

Brakes were mechanical four wheel drum.

Suspension was a solid axle on a transverse leaf spring front and rear. This was an old suspension design that actually came from the old Model T's. Ford Motor Company would stick with this type suspension for years afterward.

Ford Fordor interior photo

35 Ford Model 48 dashboard

Dimensions for the 1935 Ford Deluxe Fordor included a wheelbase of 112.0 inches and an average weight is about 2,600 lbs.

The 1935 model year of course was in the middle of the Great Depression and automakers were scrambling to sell cars. The Ford Fordor Deluxe featured in this article had a new car price of about $640. The Standard model was priced at about $575.

The new 1935 design was very attractive and the price was right. Ford sales were excellent pushing the automaker ahead of Chevrolet for the 1935 model year. In fact 1935 Ford sales was almost twice what 1934 was. Total Ford 1935 production was 820,000 units. Total 1935 Model 48 production was 787,000. Out of that amount, 105,150 were Deluxe Sedan models.

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ford fordor deluxe sedan

Newly designed rear with sloping spare wheel and integrated trunk

The 1935 Ford Collector Car Values

Most will agree that the 1935 Ford is a very popular collector car. Current values are different depending on model but the higher priced would most likely be the Phaeton, Convertible, Woody Wagon and Three Window Deluxe Coupe.

Degree and age of restoration along with originality will of course influence value. The range of retail prices for these 1935 models are from perhaps $7,000 to $28,000. You're likely to find convertible models significantly higher than this range. Any vehicle fully restored will obviously garner higher values.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)