Classic Auto Mall
6180 Morgantown Road
1956 Ford Fairlane Sunliner
Ford used the Sunliner name on many of its full-sized convertibles through the 1950's and 1960's. The Lifeguard safety package consisting of seat belts, a padded dashboard, a deep-dish steering wheel, and a breakaway rearview mirror was introduced. This option was a slow-seller. Fords for 1955 and 1956 also featured the panoramic windshields. With this panoramic windshield the A-pillars have a vertical angle, giving the driver more panoramic visibility.
Take some large steel panels and fashion them into a large slab sided automobile with lots of class, give it a shot of two tone paint, then adorn it with lots of chrome, and just for extra fun, make it a convertible, and we are in suburban driveway heaven, all in with this wonderful example of the 1956 Fairlane Sunliner.
In 1956 the swoop spear side trim was all the rage, and on this example we can definitely see why it was a cool as the white "T" shirt with the cigarette pack rolled into the short sleeve, or the "DA" combed greaser hair. For this 1950's icon, it becomes the centerpiece of the car's design, used as a delineation line between the upper Fiesta Red, and the lower Colonial White. This triple ribbed bar of polished stainless steel begins atop the front quarters at the headlights and moves rearward taking a sharp dip at the doors. It reaches its low point just below the belt line, then takes another sharp turn upwards, and just as quickly runs straight to the mid taillights on the back. Here it ends into round taillights with a small inverted V peak adorned with a small round red running light, and a white backup light, also integrated to form a small fin. Just below we see a shiny bumper with dual exhaust ports in either side, and a central chevron with Fairlane badging in your grandmother's handwriting. Cool fender skirts are attached to the rear quarters, and these are hiding wide whites which wrap knockoff style spoked chromed wheels. These same beautiful wheels are up front where a rectangular egg crate grille is flanked by a single headlight on either side. Below this egg crate grille is a shiny mirror like bumper. Noted on this car all brite-work has slight dulling which could be also called graceful aging. A clean white canvas convertible top which works just great tops off this boulevard cruiser.
You say potato, I say potahato, you say two tone, I say dual colors, either way we are referring to this interior which is bathed in both red and white vinyl and paint. Safety was the buzzword which Detroit was catching on to it at this time, and it is proven by a wraparound panoramic front windshield which allows for full view, and a deep inset style steering wheel. Red and white metal play with each other in the design of this one arched rounded front metal dash top, with a streak of white which houses the instrument cluster, knobs and controls and top of glovebox. Just below is an AM push button radio and hanging down from the dash front are two aftermarket gauges monitoring oil pressure and water temp. Two tone red and white vinyl seats in split bench form upfront, and a solid bench in the rear provide the seating, and these seats are in excellent condition. Door panels match and are very nicely presenting as well. Black clean thick pile carpet covers the floors, and a look into the trunk and this appears to be all buttoned up as original with original spare and lug wrench spinner, and slightly stained and dirtied plaid vinyl trunk floor covering. A matching tonneau cover in red is supple and fits over the downed top very nicely.
A 292ci V8 makes it happen under the hood. This is nicely painted with an orange block and intake manifold, and Thunderbird ribbed valve covers. On top is a single 4-barrel carburetor, and a Ford-O-Matic (don't you just love these 50's techno terms?!) 3-speed automatic. In the rear axle are 3.22 gears.
Some surface rust, and invasive rust cracking his seen underneath. The cracking is mostly confined to the rear of this vehicle and involved metal panels and their respective undercoating which is also cracked. Side body hangers are rusted away at different points. X frame is sound and floorpans have some cracking on them as well as prior repairs. Independent coil springs for the front suspension, and leaf springs for the rear. Power drum brakes are all around
She started right up and ran just beautifully. Good acceleration and a comfortable cruiser putting out little effort to stay up to highway speed. Braking was solid, and overall it provided a good experience. Noted the horn and radio are inoperable, and this is a heater delete car so bundle up for wintertime driving.
Certainly, a nice car, but certainly a driver with a few faults around within the paint, and undercarriage body hangers should be addressed sooner rat
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