39,127 original miles. Dearborn Award winner. Spectacular survivor that runs and drives like new. Incredible preservation, everything works, the very best 1951 Ford convertible available anywhere.
The color is called Hawthorne Green Metallic, and it’s a wonderful soft green with just a touch of blue in it and it’s extremely handsome in person. 80% of the paint is original, with the only repainted areas being below the side trim because the hydraulic cylinders for the convertible top failed at some point and ate through the paint just ahead of the rear wheels. There’s a soft shine that only original paint can offer and the remarkable lack of nicks, scrapes, and other signs of use is testament to both the low mileage and the outstanding care that the car has received all its life. The doors open easily and close with a soft but solid click, the trim fits and lines up beautifully, and everything has a precise feel that often gets lost in a restoration. That’s why good original cars are so special—they provide a benchmark to remind us just how good cars were back in the good old days. Of course, the chrome and stainless trim remains in excellent shape, having been polished and kept out of the elements. Accessory fog lights add a little contrast to the nose, and the wonderful hood ornament with its Plexiglas wings has a bit of very minor yellowing, but no cracking, chips, or spalling in the plastic. Remarkable!
There’s some modest wear on the front seat upholstery, some comfort marks in the leather, but no splits or tears, no major cracks, and no issues that would make replacement necessary. The back seat shows some age, but little wear, and like the front seat, replacement would probably be a crime. Originality only comes once and this is as good as original cars can get. The door panels are strikingly handsome, with a light-colored leather insert to add some contrast, and while the stitching is starting to come undone, nothing is loose or hanging, and in the interest of preservation, they, too, should be left as-is. The gauges are arrayed around the speedometer and they all work—in fact, EVERYTHING in this car works, including the clock and the AM radio, which pulls in signals loud and clear. There’s a little tarnishing here and there, but it’s just beautifully preserved overall. Overhead, there’s a tan canvas top and this has been replaced once, several years ago. The trunk is neatly trimmed and carries its original cocoa mat, something that has never been available as a reproduction and is probably worth several thousand bucks all by itself. There’s also a bag for the boot and a matching fifth radial tire and wheel assembly with jack.
The 239 cubic inch flathead V8 really needs no introduction other than to say that of the dozens that have passed through our hands over the years, this one is the best-running we’ve ever experienced. You can stand next to the car when it’s cold, reach in and turn the key, and the car will start almost instantly and settle into a nearly silent 500 RPM idle. It’s quite extraordinary. The copper engine enamel was probably freshened at some point, but then again, maybe not because this is a low-mileage survivor that has enjoyed the best of care since new. It wears correct Ford script hoses, correct plug wires, and even the hose clamps are factory-issue. There’s plenty of pep at any speed and the throttle response is quick and light, so the car feels agile going down the street. There’s a new stainless steel exhaust system that has a hushed burble and thanks to the stainless construction, it’ll outlast us all.
You could get a variety of transmissions in 1951, with this wonderful ragtop sporting a 3-speed manual transmission with a column shifter. Ratios are ideally chosen and the car will step off from a stop at barely more than idle, and you can guide it through the gears with just your fingertips. Clutch action is light and the car accelerates with enthusiasm at any speed. The brakes and suspension are as good as they were in 1951, with a smooth ride and confident stopping power, more signs of an enthusiastic owner who always kept his hardware in top condition. Seriously, cars this nice just don’t come along that often. The wheels are original color-matched steel wheels with hubcaps (trim rings were optional and this car never had them), and it has been recently fitted with 205/75/15 whitewall radials that have a period look with more up-to-date handling.
1951 Fords aren’t all that rare, but a car that has been this meticulously maintained and remains this much originality is truly a unique find. Please, go drive all the others, then come try this one on for size, because the difference between even a restored car and this remarkable survivor will really open your eyes. A car that has been loved this much rises to the top of the field and the next owner will be sure to love it just as much. Special cars are like that. Call today!
For more details and photos, please visit www.HarwoodMotors.com