(Found In) Northwest Berkeley (Berkeley, California) : 1970 Ford Thunderbird Landau Sports-Back Coupe

img_6719The Ford Thunderbird saw many persona changes to cope with the changing times throughout its life as a personalized chariot for a select few. From luxurious sports personal convertible to overwrought George Barris Custom to fascinatingly land bound ode to space and air travel, to suburban bordello on wheels, where was the Thunderbird by the time it turned sweet 16?

In reality, it faced its first true identity crisis. Due to some new beauty standards in the field, the Thunderbird underwent a major dose of rhinoplasty to keep up with newer, fresher faces influenced by a new boss from a new studio. As the Thunderbird transitioned to adulthood, we look at what the awkward adolescence looked like.

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(Found In) Claremont (Oakland, California): 1966 Ford Thunderbird Convertible

24160339594_3a70c0783d_kThe Thunderbird legacy started as a top down thrill. However, the thrill was a bit muted in some ways. To give the original Thunderbird a leg up over a host of sports cars, the Thunderbird was marketed as a “personal” car. As such, comfort and convenience was built in from the beginning.

Featuring an optional Hardtop, and a slew of convienience options, the open air quotient always seemed to be an optional one. Ford flirted and fielded the idea of closing off the full free-breeze feeling as early as 1960 with an option of a sliding metal sunroof for Hardtop Coupes. But by 1966, the writing was on the wall within the confines of the Private World of Thunderbird.
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(Found In) Alberta Arts District (Portland): 1962 Ford Thunderbird Landau Two Door Hardtop

11830178_10152970839432201_804884135_nThe truth of the matter is, even if the Ford Thunderbird wasn’t the absolute best choice in its field, it definitely found itself being a trend setter. Although I don’t consider it the first and foremost Personal Luxury Coupe it did carry the sales torch in that genre for more than a decade.

Glittering gadgets, glamour and unique styling were one way that the Thunderbird stayed ahead of the rest of the personal nests from the best of the manufacturing world. In 1962, Ford tested two distinct oceans of taste. One of those was an homage to the baby bird stages of the Thunderbird’s life, and another that would see it through many years of middle aged bloat before it became a fit senior citizen.

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