Our featured automobile is the top of the line 1963 Ford Fairlane 500 Sports Coupe. The Fairlane 500 was the top trim level.

ford fairlane sports coupe specs
1963 Ford Fairlane 500 Sports Coupe

This was the second model year for the downsized Fairlane. With the Fairlane downsizing, the model became an intermediate placed between the Falcon and the Galaxie. It’s interesting to note that the 1963 intermediate Fairlane was about the same size as the full sized Ford from 1955.

Convertible Fairlanes were not offered until 1966. Without a convertible, those buyers who wanted a sporty type style with the Ford Fairlane would gravitate to the Sports Coupe with it’s bucket seats.

Ford Fairlane’s Historic Name

The Ford Fairlane automobile was named after Henry Ford’s 56 room, 31,000 square foot Fair Lane estate in Dearborn, Michigan, a Detroit suburb. According to henryfordfairlane.org ,” Henry and Clara Ford built the 31,000-square-foot Fair Lane as their dream home on 1,300 acres, just a couple miles from where they both were born. At a time when Henry was skyrocketing to global fame after the success of Ford Motor Company and the Model T, Fair Lane was their sanctuary.

1963 ford fairlane 500 photosIt was their 15th and final home – where they enjoyed entertaining their grandchildren and many friends, including frequent visitor Thomas Edison, for whom they reserved a suite of rooms”.

As of this date, the historic structures are closed for restoration however the grounds and gardens are open for visitors daily from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. May 1-September 30. The grounds are open 8 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays only and closed on weekends from October 1-April 30.

1963 Ford Fairlane Styling

No significant changes for the Fairlane line for 1963 other than Ford introduced two pillarless hardtop coupes for that year. These were in Fairlane 500 and Sports Coupe trim. For 1963 and later Sports Coupe models, the center console, which had come from the Falcon in 1962, was changed to be similar to that of the Ford Galaxie.

Front end styling for the 1963 models was very similar to the big Galaxie models, but the rear end kept the small tailfins and “pieplate” tail lamp. Speaking of tailfins during the 1950’s, Ford did not put the same amount of emphasis on the tailfin in the way General Motors and Chrysler did, they held onto the concept it longer than most automakers.

Ford Engines for the 1963 Fairlane and Car Specifications

Standard engine for the 1963 Ford Fairlane was a 170 cubic inch straight six with 110 HP.

Buyers were given two V8 options for the 1963 Fairlane. These were a 221 and a 260 cubic inch power plant. The 221 V-8 would be pulled after 1963 due to its 145 HP couldn’t compete during the 1960’s where more and more horsepower seemed to be the theme. What Ford did do in mid year was to bring out it’s 289 cubic inch V-8. The Ford Motor Company promoted the 289 and it’s 271 HP version as a powerful drag strip winner although the Fairlane with it’s 289 V-8 really didn’t stand out as a winner at the drag strip. Ford’s 289 lasted six model years, from 1963 to 1968, but it’s still known as a very good engine, especially in K-Code “High-Performance” trim.

The standard Fairlane gearbox is a three speed manual with an option for a two speed Ford-O-Matic automatic. The 1963.5 Fairlanes with V-8’s, those minus the 221 V-8’s, offered the four speed manual on its V8s, both the 260 and the 289.

Brakes are four wheel hydraulic drums.

ford fairlane 500 sports coupe 1963Front suspension is independent coil springs and rear with a live axle and semi-elliptic leaf springs.

Dimensions included an wheelbase of 115.5 inches, overall length of 197.6 inches, width 71.3 inches, height 54.3 inches. Curb weight came in at 2980 lbs.

Total Ford Fairlane 1963 production was 246,450 vehicles.

See these additional Auto Museum Online articles found on the links below…

1963 Chevy Impala SS Convertible

1963 Ford Falcon Ranchero

1957 Ford Fairlane Convertible

Reference material for this article included..Ford Fairlane Performance Portfolio 1955-1970...Full Size Fords 1955-70 Sedans Wagons Book Six Cylinder To 429 V8 Engine by author David W. Temple…Ford Motor Company Fairlane Archives.

1963 Ford Fairlane 500 Sports Coupe Collector Values

The Ford Fairlane’s of the early 1960’s can now be seen as original restored beauties as well as highly customized examples with big V-8’s, customized exhausts and air scoops. You’ll likely run into the whole gamut at local car shows.

1963 ford fairlane 500 sports coupeBecause vehicle condition, mileage, originality, and degree of restoration, if any, dictates collector value, there’s a wide range of asking prices for 1963 Ford Fairlane 500’s and 500 Sport Coupes. As of this date we see asking prices from $7,500 to $30,000. Low end values require a lot of restoration and the high end represents excellent restoration examples.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)