Classic Auto Mall
6180 Morgantown Road
1956 Ford Thunderbird Convertible
Ad men from the 1950's described the car using such terms as "A Mink Coat for Father" or "Light of Hand" (referring to the ease of handling and steering) and "6AM Thunderbird Time" featuring a pristine Suburban Upper Middle Class House, a jacket and tie husband leaving for work, passing the milkman on the way out as the family's Irish setter watches his master leave for work. Quintessential middle class success, but they had to work for it.
A nice earlier restoration example, in rarely seen Sage Green with a white convertible top and with a white hardtop and a porthole window within it. Much attention to detail has been paid during this earlier restoration, and it creates an excellent example of a Ford classic with an engine dress up kit, and rare locking pins for the porthole top. A multiple award winner at various shows and the original bill of sale, this California black plate car, also throws in the original owner's manual and lest we forget a booklet with information about the car's heritage tracked down to the original owner.
Step in for a closer look to find all the details firmly in place and ready to awe you. At the front, a stainless egg-crate grille rides between clean headlights, a delicate header emblem and a sculpted bumper that bends around peaked fenders. Between those fenders, a classy hood scoop leads the eye to a wraparound windshield that's reflected by dual chrome side view mirrors, cleared by satin-finished wipers and framed by thick chrome trim. When the weather stops being agreeable, a white canvas convertible top comes to the rescue while complimenting the body color for a striking look. There is also a matching white fiberglass hardtop with this one, allowing you to enjoy this classic bird year round. Below, sculpted door handles and stainless-trimmed fender skirts perfectly complement chrome fender louvers, small Ford emblems and glowing "Thunderbird" scripts that sit to the front of fender vents. The 56 has arguably the most memorable rear view of all the Thunderbirds with finned quarters capped by pointed taillights. This bird is accentuated by a Continental rear bumper with an extra bump out that houses a metal covered chrome banded and center chrome capped spare tire holder. Paint overall is in good condition, but some areas of the beginnings of bubbling are seen throughout. Gaps are nicely minded, and fender skirts frame Ford badged center capped wire chromed wheels on the back and these are also in front.
Dramatic styling was king in the 1950s and it certainly didn't stop on the outside. Between the doors of this Ford, a pleated Sage Green, and white vinyl are amazing in this interior, along with plenty of mixing in of stainless steel panels offers seating for two with plenty of period-correct charm. Nicely aged door sill plates clamp the corners of clean Sage Green carpet. In the center, a chrome shifter extends through the floor, free of any type of console. Seating is provided by a pleated white insert bench seat with Sage Green bolsters which show beautifully. At either side, matching door panels are dressed with attractive spin pattern aluminum pieces as well bright window cranks and door pulls. The dash in its padded glory, comes at you with its curved shape, and is covered in crack free green vinyl. The factory gauges monitor fuel, rpm, speed, temperature, and time from within a spin patterned aluminum bezel that looks great amidst the green painted surfaces of this dash, which neatly curves around and greets the door panels. Chrome pull knobs control accessories like lights and wipers while the Town and Country radio provides all the entertainment needed. In front of the driver, a nice green steering wheel extends forward, offering control over the front wheels. A lift of the rear deck lid we find solid pans beneath a correct plaid floor mat, and no rust here, and a neatly placed color correct spare tire in the very center of this space.
Tilt the lightweight hood forward to find one of Ford's overhead valve 312ci V8s. Factory heads topped with original valve covers, casted "Thunderbird" and horizontal ribs frame a factory intake, while a shiny chromed air cleaner assembly tops the 4-barrel carburetor. This nicely restored engine dress up kit adorned mill has a 3-speed Ford-O-Matic automatic transmission, and a 3.31 rear axle setup. All looking just fabulous under this forward flipping hood.
The original X frame structure is strong and true, with no surface rust and presenting as the suspension and drivetrain undercarriage parts, in shiny black. All this is framed by pristine rust free matte black floorpans and rockers. Independent coil springs for the front suspension, and leaf springs for the rear, are on as originally built, as are 4 wheel power drum brakes.
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