Lot 248: Ford Fairlane Sunliner Convertible
Model 76B. 202 bhp, 292.0 cu. in. OHV V-8 engine, three-speed Ford-O-Matic transmission, coil spring independent front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 115.5 in. Ford entered 1956 with several new body styles: a Victoria hardtop coupe in the mid-range Customline series, a four-door Fairlane Victoria hardtop sedan, and a dressed-up two door Parklane station wagon. However, the sole convertible remained the Fairlane Sunliner, which the company said was far and away America's favorite convertible. They weren't wrong: with more than 58,000 built, it was 40 percent more popular than the comparable Chevrolet. Buyers had a choice of a six-cylinder engine or two V-8s. Most chose the 292-cubic inch Y-block V-8 with which this car is equipped, and a majority ordered the Ford-O-Matic transmission. A 12-volt electrical system was adopted company-wide. Power accessories were gaining a foothold in the low-priced field, as evidenced by this car's Master Guide power steering. Other equipment includes a pushbutton AM radio, a Magic Aire heater, dual outside mirrors, grille and trunk guards, fender stone guards, wire wheel covers, fog lights, and a Continental kit with its own wire wheel cover and a power top. Body contours and paint are excellent, and the doors shut well and have good alignment and even gaps. The convertible top is done in dark blue canvas, contrasting nicely with the Bermuda Blue and Diamond Blue paint, and has a boot cover matching the blue vinyl of the blue and white upholstery. Ford touted Luxury Lounge interiors in 1956, with deep-cushioned seats that were custom-tailored and color-harmonized. A new-design instrument panel featured a hooded cluster inspired by the Thunderbird. The engine compartment is very clean and nicely detailed, as is the rust-free undercarriage, though not highly detailed, but it evidences a body-off restoration. America's favorite indeed, it remains very popular in the collector community.
The John Staluppi Collection|
RM Auctions, Palm Beach, Florida
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