1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Retractable Hardtop

Ford wasn't the first auto manufacturer to offer a "retractable hardtop", but their iconic Skyliner is certainly the most famous "flip-top". Chrysler's '40-'41 Thunderbolt sported a retractable hardtop, but on a very limited-production vehicle. In the early 1950's Ford Designer Gilbert Spear began working on a retractable hardtop design and in 1953 secured approval from management to move forward with plans to offer it on the upcoming Lincoln Continental Mark-II. But the final design and engineering weren't completed until 1955 which was too late to be included on the new Mark-II. After an extensive re-design, the retractable hardtop was scaled down to fit the smaller Fairlane chassis and Ford premiered a 1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Skyliner Retractable hardtop at the New York Auto Show in December 1956. This prototype was well received and the Skyliner joined Ford's Fairlane-500 line-up for 1957. While sharing many features with a standard 1957 Ford Fairlane 500 hardtop, the Skyliner is longer and heavier and uses unique sheet metal from the cowl on back. The Skyliner's "convertible hard-top" is an amazing feat of engineering that uses over 610 ft. of wiring and countless electric motors, screw jacks, servos and switches to raise the hardtop, fold down the front portion and then tuck the entire top assembly into the trunk. To fit the "Hide-Away Hardtop" into the trunk, the Skyliner's gas tank was re-positioned to behind the rear seat (with the filler neck on the side) and the trunk lid bulges up slightly, compared to a normal Fairlane. When stored in the trunk, the hardtop and it's supporting framework of arms, mechanics and motors allow for very limited luggage space, which is restricted to a 30"x24"x15" metal box that can only be reached from the sides of the car. The 1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Skyliner embodies pure style and luxury and despite it's quirks and idiosyncrasies, is a beautiful and amazing marvel of engineering that always attracts a crowd at any Classic Car Show or Cruise Night.
Length: 210.0"
Height: 56.0"
Width: 78.5"
Weight: 3916 lbs.
Wheelbase: 118"
Production: 20,766 units
Base Price: $2945
Wheel Size: 5.5x14"
Tire Size: 8.00x14"
Ground Clearance: 7.5"
V8: 272 ci (190 bhp)
V8: 292 ci (212 bhp)
V8: 312 ci 4bbl (245 bhp)
V8: 312 ci 2x4bbl (270 bhp)
V8: 312 ci Supercharge(300 bhp)
1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Skyliner
Beautiful Red Interior in
1957 Ford Skyliner Retractable
1957 Ford Retractable Flame
Red M0644, Colonial White M0524
1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Retractable
Top Partially Raised
Classic Front Grill on
1957 Ford Fairlane Skyliner
1957 Ford Fairlane-500 Skyliner
Hood is Hinged at the Front
1957 Ford Fairlane painted Flame
Red(M0640)/Colonial White(M0524)
1957 Ford Skyliner Retractable Top
Automatically Stows in Trunk
1957 Ford Fairlane Skyliner in
Cumberland Green #M0755
1957 Ford Skyliner Retractable
Hardtop Showing Fairlane Gold Trim
1957 Ford Fairlane Retractable
With Awesome Continental Kit

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