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The 1955-1960 Ford Thunderbird Automobiles

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Ford Thunderbird
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Detroit, MI

The 1955 Ford Thunderbird was The Ford Motor Company's answer to the Chevrolet Corvette. Ford advertising claimed the Thunderbird was a "personal car of distinction" and not a Sports Car.

The Thunderbird had the same wheelbase as the Corvette, 102 inches. It was far more luxurious and practical with its steel body, convenient roll up windows, soft top or hard top and 193 horsepower V-8 engine.

With American comfort and European styling the Thunderbird was appealing to Ford customers. Sales commenced on October 22, 1954 and at $3,000.00 without options Ford sold over 16,000 units in its first year, 1955. The 1955 Thunderbird was equipped with a 292 cubic inch V-8 that developed 193 horsepower with a three speed transmission. Or 198 horsepower with the Ford-O-Matic automatic transmission.

Photo        PHOTO
1955 Ford Thunderbird

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1956 Ford Thunderbird

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1957 Ford Thunderbird

1955 Thunderbird styling features included a functional hood scoop, chrome trim accents, a selection of power extras and a rear bumper that contained the exhaust outlets. 1956 Thunderbirds got a few minor updates including glass wind wings and port holes. 1956 thunderbirds cost $3,038 and 15,631 were produced. The '57 Thunderbird had a removable hard top and was the last two seater Thunderbird. Cost was $3,145.00 and 21,380 were made.

1958 Ford Thunderbird

The 1958 Ford Thunderbird debuted with seating for 4 instead of 2. Sales nearly doubled in 1958 to 34,758 hard tops and 2,134 Convertible Coupes. Styling changes included new bumper and grille, quad headlamps and large round taillamps. A 352 cubic inch 300 horsepower or a 430 cubic inch 350 horsepower V-8s. The new '58 Thunderbird was nick named the "Squarebird".

1959 Ford Thunderbird

The 1959 Thunderbird was a solid hit with only minor changes but increased cost to about $4,000.00. Changes included a honeycomb grille, non functional hood scoop and new tail lights. 1959 production included 57,195 hard tops and 10,261 Convertible Coups. 1960 was the end of the "Square Bird" styling. Very few changes were made on the 1960 Thunderbird and they were confined to the grille.

1960 Ford Thunderbird

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