Ford’s final offering of the first-generation Thunderbird in 1957 is considered by many auto enthusiasts to be a fitting close to the company’s end of two-seat passenger cars. Aided by an extended sales period due to delays in the production of the 1958 model, Ford sold 21,380 units of the car many credit for creating the personal luxury car market we still have today. The 1957 models featured redesigned front and rear bumpers, doors and rear fenders as well as new tail lights and instrument panel. There were also new upholstery designs for the seat and door panels.
Officially the Ford company line was that the Thunderbird was not intended to be a direct competitor to Corvette, marketed by General Motors as a sports car, the reality was that the many similarities of the two vehicles invited comparison by the motoring public. Ford’s decision to add higher performance engines for the 1957 models as options seemed to encourage that comparison despite the company’s official stance. It has been suggested that the performance options, coupled with the cosmetic changes, gave the Thunderbird a more masculine feel and appearance.
There were four engine options for the 1957 Thunderbird, engine all based on Ford’s Y-block V8. The 292 cubic inch (C code) was standard equipment, while a higher displacement 312 cubic inch powerplant with a single four-barrel carburetor (D code) was the most popular choice on the order form. There were 1,499 Thunderbirds equipped with a 312 cubic inch engine that featured two four-barrel carbs (E code) and just 188 units were built with the coveted supercharged 312 cubic inch engine (F code). Both the E code and f code cars are significantly rare, as their combined sales account for just less than eight percent of total production.
This car is one of the 1,499 F code cars built for the 1957 model year, built in Ford’s Dearborn (MI) assembly plant on December 13, 1956. The trim tag data indicated the car left the factory in Flame Red with a matching Flame Red interior, while the car’s VIN proves the car was built with the 272 horsepower E code powerplant.
The present owner acquired this vehicle in January 2004 and it has been driven very few miles under his ownership stored in a humidity-controlled environment. At some point prior to that purchase this vehicle was treated to a body-off rotisserie restoration evidenced by a binder of photos documenting different parts of the restoration process that came with the car. Also included in that binder is a car with cam specs so we assume there was engine work done at the time of restoration but cannot say to what level. The car presents beautifully today with the correct Red Flame (Code V) paint and proper Flame Red (Code XH) interior and the brightwork is excellent. The car is equipped with a black convertible top and a porthole hardtop matching the exterior color. The car is optioned with power steering, power windows, automatic transmission and the engine dress-up kit. The optional wire spoke wheels are wrapped with period-correct wide whitewall tires. We are unable to ascertain the true mileage on this vehicle and in accordance with statutes regulating licensed Missouri auto dealers the vehicle will be sold “mileage exempt” due to age. All aspects of this car present well for a vehicle whose restoration is approaching 20 years old
Evergreen Digital Showroom offers this wonderful example of a rare first-generation Ford Thunderbird at $84,900 USD. Pre-purchase inspections are welcomed and encouraged. We will be glad to arrange transportation for this vehicle at buyer’s expense or will work with the shipper of buyer’s choosing. For additional information or to make an offer on this vehicle contact sales manager Steve Russell at 417-532-8000.
Because of the number of vehicles we represent we cannot drive every vehicle for long distances. These vehicles have been part of static displays for long periods of time, in some cases for decades, and are subject to the flaws and imperfections consistent with that. While we do our best to disclose all issues we known about a vehicle in our advertising, these are old cars and something that has always worked in the past might not function properly today. Please check the requirements of your state regarding the licensing and registration of classic vehicles and make sure the vehicle you are looking at meets those if applicable. Unless otherwise noted, all vehicles represented by Evergreen Digital Showroom possess a clean (non-branded) title which will be provided the new buyer when purchase funds clear our financial institution. Virtually all our vehicles are sold as mileage exempt due to their age. We do not warranty any vehicle, nor any part of the vehicle including air conditioning systems, brake systems, electrical systems and gauges, fuel systems, accessories or powertrain components.
These are old vehicles and it is very common for them to require certain maintenance and upkeep for them to be operational. In many cases issues with leaks may develop when being driven after a long period of not being used. This is common, as classic cars at some point will leak fluids. For this reason, we do not encourage buyers to attempt driving their purchase home as we cannot guarantee functional reliability of these vehicles. We strongly encourage prospective buyers to be sure they are comfortable with these issues before purchasing a classic car.
Descriptions of vehicles represented by Evergreen Digital Showroom are intended to be informational in nature and do not in any way constitute any sort of warranty, expressed or implied. Again, these vehicles are presented “as-is, where-is” without guarantee or warranty. Vehicles manufactured prior to 1981 will likely not be included in the databases of companies such as CarFax and AutoCheck that provide vehicle history information to consumers. If you have specific questions regarding a vehicle we urge you to contact us at 417-532-8000.