Sports & Classics of Monterey

12-14 August 2010


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Lot 108

1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Skyliner Retractable Hardtop

Sold for $49,500

245 hp, 312 cu. in. “Thunderbird Special” V8 engine, four-barrel carburetor, Ford-O-Matic automatic transmission, independent front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 118"

- Industry-leading fully retractable hardtop

- Powerful drivetrain, power steering, A/C and more

- Recently serviced top mechanism and detailed engine bay

In mid-model-year 1957, Ford introduced the first-ever mass-produced retractable hardtop convertible, the Fairlane 500 Skyliner. The brainchild of Ford engineer Gil Spears, this innovative design was originally intended for the 1956 Lincoln-Continental Mark II. However, the skyrocketing development costs of the Mark II prohibited the retractable hardtop’s application, with the idea picked up by the Ford division instead.

In 1957, Ford beat Chevrolet in sales for the first time in decades, by a substantial 10 percent margin at that. While only 20,766 Fairlane 500 Retractables were sold, compared with total Ford production numbering 1,655,068 vehicles, they certainly contributed to Ford’s success by pushing the engineering and stylistic envelope further than competing marques. Most importantly, throughout its three-year production cycle, the Skyliner consistently drew large crowds into Ford showrooms, which came to witness this space age engineering marvel in action.

Well-sorted and continuing to benefit from a high-quality older restoration, this 1957 Fairlane 500 Skyliner is a great example of the most-expensive Ford model for 1957, originally priced from $2,942. With a black finish and a red and white two-tone interior that remains in very nice condition, the Skyliner also features a powerful “Thunderbird Special” 312 V8, a Ford-O-Matic automatic transmission, power steering, rear fender skirts, air conditioning and dual fender-mounted rear-view mirrors. The top mechanism was recently serviced, and the engine compartment was detailed. It presents very nicely. All this 1950s dream machine requires is a new owner and an open road.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

Cameron Smyth

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Cameron Smyth joined RM Sotheby’s as a Car Specialist in 2015, working out of our corporate office and providing assistance on c... read more

David Swig

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more