1956 Ford Fairlane Crown Victoria Skyliner 'Glass Top'
Sold For $165,000Inclusive of applicable buyer's fee.
RM | Auctions - HERSHEY 9 - 10 OCTOBER 2014 - Offered from the collection of Jeffrey Day
- Offered from the collection of Jeffrey Day
- One of only 603 Glass Top Crown Victorias built in 1956
- Beautifully restored by Crown Victoria expert Dan Pixler
- A Crown Victoria Association Best of Show winner
- Extremely highly optioned
202 bhp, 292 cu. in. OHV V-8 engine, three-speed Ford-O-Matic automatic transmission, coil-spring independent front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 115.5 in.
In 1953, Ford Motor Company celebrated its 50th anniversary with a lavish hardcover book, Ford at Fifty, which both looked back at the company’s rich history and ahead at a promising future. On the cover were the X-100 and X-500 show cars, both of which featured a tinted Plexiglas roof panel over the driver and front passenger, toning down light, heat, and glare and boosting Ford’s new image as a style leader with “Worth More” features.
The following year, production Ford Fairlane Victoria Coupes adopted the glass roof panel for a special model, which was dubbed both “the Ultra-Modern Skyliner” and the “glamour gal of the ’54 season.” As fascinating and dramatic as the feature was, it did have its drawbacks; namely, it turned the interior into a greenhouse in sunny weather, which was a problem that was eventually addressed with zip-in sunshades and widely ordered factory Select Aire air conditioning.
Total Skyliner production for the model year was 13,444 units, which was sufficient to continue the style to the handsomely restyled 1955 and 1956 models. Ford moved the “bubbletop” up market, making it a variant of the new, top-of-the-line Fairlane Crown Victoria, which had its distinctive non-structural chrome roof band, dubbed the “tiara” or “basket handle.” This final version of the Skyliner saw production of 1,999 units in 1955 and another 603 in 1956, after which the glass roof became a thing of future’s past.
Of the 603 Skyliners produced in 1956, few remain. They are the rarest and most desirable of all Crown Victorias, and they are one of the most fiercely sought-after Fords of the Fabulous Fifties.
Among those who sought one was Dan Pixler, of Luana, Iowa. Mr. Pixler, a professional auto body man, has been a longtime member and judge of the Ford Crown Victoria Association and is a well-known authority in Crown Victoria authenticity and restoration. The Skyliner offered today was Mr. Pixler’s personal car, much of which he restored himself, and as would be expected, it is utterly outstanding. It is finished to concours-quality throughout and wears beautiful Sunset Coral paint over laser-straight body panels that have outstanding fit and finish. Its interior is nearly brand new, and the undercarriage and under the hood are immaculate and correctly detailed. Even the manifolds were porcelained.
Options are abound, such as front and near nerf bar bumper protectors, a dual exhaust, an original Ford Continental kit, front and rear stone guards, stainless rocker panel moldings, fender skirts with stone guards, power brakes, power steering, a four-way power seat, power windows, map lights, a tissue dispenser, a rear window defroster, an AM radio with a rear speaker, an under-hood trouble light, stainless wire hubcaps, and wide whitewall bias-ply tires. This car also features two very important accessories, a zip-in sunshade, which is correct for the car but almost never found on restored examples, and factory Select Aire air conditioning.
Few Skyliners have been taken to a very high level, and fewer still are so heavily optioned with correct factory and dealer accessories. This car combines both, and accordingly, it is regarded as one of the absolute finest Glass Tops remaining. What is even more impressive is that it has held that high regard for a remarkable 31 years, during which time it has been continually maintained by Mr. Pixler and his successors in the same high-point condition in which it was finished in 1983. This former CVA Best in Show winner still appears as fresh and show-worthy as when completed, as it has just nine miles recorded on the odometer.
For the buyer seeking one of the most famous, scarcest, and desirable Fords of the 1950s, there is simply no better option.
Please note that this car was also formerly part of the highly regarded John Woodhead Ford collection in Minnesota, known for the beyond-reproach quality of its vehicles.