Feature Vehicle of the Month
1957 Ford Fairlane 500 Skyliner Retractable Hardtop
Owners: Clayton & Billie Jo Elliott, Florida Region members
The Elliott’s bought this car in 2000 at the International Ford Retractable Club (IFRC) National Meet in Indiana. They’ve driven (not trailered) this car to 9 National IFRC meets in the United States since they’ve owned the car.
This 312 cubic inch (5.1 liter) V–8 engine with 4 barrel carburetor develops 245 horsepower. The generator was upgraded to a 100 amp one wire alternator.
The black fabric interior is called “black air weave” and has silver thread woven into the fabric. They added an aftermarket under dash air conditioning system.
The car’s self storing metal top takes up the entire trunk area except for the rectangular storage box in the photo. There is no hydraulics used in the top operation, it is ALL electrical with 7 electric motors, multiple relays, various cables, springs, screw jacks and pivoting arms. It takes around 60 seconds to fully open or close the top. A safety benefit of the “retrac” model was the gasoline tank was moved to behind the rear passenger seat.
The car rides on P215–75R14 “Diamondback” tires. The Skyliner’s tail lamps and modest tail fins echo those of the 1957 two–seat Thunderbird. With a wheelbase of 118 inches, a length of 17 feet, 7 inches the car drives and rides very smoothly down the road.
Next Club Meeting...
The Florida Region of the Antique Automobile Club of America meets the 2nd Monday of each month at 7 P.M. at the Kress Memorial Church of Seventh-Day Adventists, 746 Formosa Av, Winter Park, Florida 32789. Located 2 blocks south of Fairbanks Avenue.
Next Club Activity
December 14, 2014 (Sunday)