PAINTED LIKE HOT ROD MAGAZINE COVER CAR FOR 1960, VERY SLICK THUNDERBIRD
If there was one car crying out for a custom makeover, it's the Ford Thunderbird of 1958-1961. With its many complex shapes and curves, this 1960 Thunderbird was the perfect canvas for a makeover designed to emulate the Larry Watson custom T-Bird that was Hot Rod Magazine's car of the year in 1960. For fans of the old-school customs, this one definitely delivers.
I'm sure Larry Watson's car was stunning in person, but this one lives up to the legend in every possible way. Never mind the custom work, we've never seen a "square Bird" finished to this level with show-quality paint and laser-straight bodywork. Obviously there was a plan here, and with the idea that they were going to create this awesome tribute, there was just no way they could do anything but make it as perfect as possible. As a result, the bodywork has crisp, sharp reflections, the paint is miles deep, and the sharp masking work for the silver accents is so crisp that it almost looks like a separate piece of trim. The base is correct code K Kingston Blue, which is this Thunderbird's original color, and like black, it doesn't really tolerate shoddy workmanship. Then there's all the chrome and trim, which remains completely intact on this car, including the massive front bumper and grille assembly that probably cost $5000 to restore all by itself.
The two-tone blue interior is fairly stock and beautifully executed, with stylish bucket seats and button-tufted upholstery that's the epitome of '60s cool. A white steering wheel provides contrast and there's plenty of chrome inside, too. Ford's fascination with aircraft styling shows in the large, round gauges with white faces in a bright chrome instrument panel with secondary switches underneath. The center console houses the controls for the factory A/C (a rather rare option), and the factory AM radio is joined by a vintage FM converter, so you know this is a legitimate old-school build. Power window switches on the center console are another cool touch that you don't see today and the carpets are protected by Thunderbird-logo floor mats. In back, there's a giant trunk outfitted with a reproduction mat set and full-sized spare tire with jack assembly.
Ford's sturdy and torquey 352 cubic inch V8 makes this big 'Bird an effortless cruiser and doesn't need extensive modifications to be entertaining to drive. Tilt the hood forward and you'll find a rather neatly detailed engine bay with an original air cleaner, chrome valve covers, and a correct expansion tank for the cooling system, all of which make it look very authentic. There's some new wiring and plenty of evidence of proper maintenance, and it was treated to a valve job with hardened valve seats just a few years ago. The carburetor is a 4-barrel and the electrical system was converted to a modern alternator for reliability's sake. A 3-speed Cruise-O-Matic automatic transmission powers a 9-inch rear end with 3.10 gears inside, so this Thunderbird is easy on the highway and always feels relaxed. The soft, smooth ride is something we'll never experience again and the custom dual exhaust system has a wicked cackle that's totally in tune with the custom vibe, although the lakes pipes are purely for show. Classic baby moon hubcaps are fitted for a period look and carry 205/75/14 Goodyear wide whitewall radials that definitely ride and handle better than any bias-ply original.
A very cool custom that delivers on the old-school look that's suddenly very much back in fashion. And underneath, you get a very clean, roadworthy Thunderbird as a bonus. Call today!
- AM/FM Radio
- Air Conditioning
- Power Seats
- Power Steering
- Power Windows
- Seatbelts (Front)
- Seatbelts (Rear)
- Vinyl Interior
- Build Receipts
- Restoration Photos
- Owner's Manual
- Interior Color
- Transmission Spec
- Front Brakes
- Rear Brakes
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