Photo Feature: 1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Sunliner Convertible | The Daily Drive | Consumer Guide® The Daily Drive


1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Sunliner Convertible

Observe: The next story was excerpted from the February 2016 difficulty of  Collectible Car journal

Using the aggressive benefit of an all-new and enticing design, Ford was in a position to produce America’s best-selling 1957 vehicle. The push to ship 1.67 million copies of its expanded lineup included vital contributions from two physique types that had traditionally been segment-leading sellers for Ford: station wagons and convertibles.

Extra from Collectible Car Journal

1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Sunliner Convertible

The 5 wagon choices within the ’57 Ford catalog tallied a brand-record 321,170 assemblies, or 19.4 p.c of all that yr’s full-sized Fords. Convertibles, too, reached a brand new peak. The 77,726 conventional fabric-topped Fairlane 500 Sunliners added as much as the clear favourite within the subject. Nonetheless, 1957 was the yr that Ford added the Skyliner with a steel high that might be retracted underneath the automotive’s uniquely formed decklid. One other 20,766 Ford homeowners signed up for this mechanized marvel. With greater than 98,000 droptops in circulation, Ford outsold the subsequent three largest ’57 convertible producers—Chevrolet, Oldsmobile, and Buick—mixed!

Nineteen fifty-seven Fords got here in two sizes, however even the “small” 116-inch-wheelbase sedans and wagons have been longer and decrease than their predecessors. Fairlanes and Fairlane 500s have been on a 118-inch stretch, and featured extra dramatic styling due to skinny canted fins that flared out of the rear quarter panels. (Customs and Customized 500s had extra subdued fins and a smaller rear bumper than the higher-series automobiles.)

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1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Sunliner Convertible

Beneath every little thing was a redesigned body that was a couple of foot wider halfway down the body rails. Underslung cross members earned the chassis the nickname “cowbelly” however additionally they allowed for ground pans to nestle between the body rails. This permitted designers to decrease the automotive whereas sustaining first rate passenger room. Revised ball-joint entrance suspension, outboard mounted rear springs, and 14-inch-diameter wheels (which changed 15-inchers) have been new.

Reverse-canted A-pillars changed the vertical windshield posts of 1955-56. A brand new instrument panel featured a fan-style speedometer. Closed-body Fairlane 500s featured nylon-and-vinyl upholstery and loop carpeting however the Sunliner had all-vinyl trim in a alternative of 4 colour mixtures, and color-keyed vinyl-rubber ground overlaying. 

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1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Sunliner Convertible

John Kingston of Novato, California, has owned the 1957 Sunliner featured right here since 2010. His buy quantities to one thing of a homecoming for the automotive, which was inbuilt Ford’s San Jose, California, plant. Kingston says the Flame Pink and Raven Black ragtop had its first dwelling in Texas, ultimately wound up in Arkansas for restoration, then returned to the Lone Star State, which is the place he purchased it.

When new, the Sunliner began at $2605 however Kingston’s automotive is filled with choices that might have added about $600 to the delivered value again in ’57. Most notable of the extra-cost objects is its “Thunderbird Particular” 312-cid V-8. (Fairlanes got here with a alternative of a 223-cid inline six or 292-cube V-8 as customary gear.) With a four-barrel carburetor and twin exhausts, it makes 245 hp. It’s hooked to an optionally available Fordomatic three-speed computerized transmission.

The automotive cruises simpler with energy steering and energy brakes. Look and safety objects embody wire-spoke wheels on whitewall tires, a continental package, rear fender skirts, twin exterior mirrors, a grille guard, and brilliant rocker-panel trim.

Picture Characteristic: 1963 Ford Thunderbird Italien

1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Sunliner Convertible

1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Sunliner Gallery

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1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Sunliner Convertible

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