’57 Ford Fairlane Starliner

Submitted by Markydoodle October 23rd, 2011
Certifikitsch WinnerClassique d Camembert

The long trunk tells the story as it approaches the passenger pick up at PSP.  It’s a ’57 Ford “retractable” hard-top convertible.  At first I tried to be stealthy about taking pictures of this black beauty.  Then I saw these young ladies in their Palm Springs attire ready to board, and it all came together.  People that know what they’re doing, maybe they’ll be friendly.Loading the luggage in the trunk, aka the top storage, so the door opens backwards when the metal roof disappears into it.

Then when faced with the notion of them pulling away, I ran up and asked if I could take pictures (after I’d taken all the others, how low class of me.)  She was gracious enough to agree.  This person was so gracious.  Truly one of the Beautiful People of the Desert.  Thank you so much for the picture!  You and that car made my day!

8 Responses to “’57 Ford Fairlane Starliner”

  1. Allee Willis

    Once again, so jealous of this vehicle I could die. I’ve never actually seen one of these in action. But I think I always thought that it was the roof that was retractable. It looks like it’s the trunk. Does the roof then fly it into the trunk or is it just the back that opens. How well did these sell?

    I could have predicted that the owner of this car was one of the Beautiful People of the Desert. Who else would have the sense to drive around in anything like this? And she’s certainly dressed to match the car.

  2. Mark Milligan

    Thanks for the C d’C Allee! I hope the nice lady comes to join us on here, I gave her the web address, and I heard her repeating it, so we may have comments from her too!

    Production numbers from Ford are 1957-20,766, 1958-14,713, and 1959-12,915. The idea was fantastic, but there were issues with the mechanicals being reliable at times.

    I Love Lucy doing a commercial for this great car.


  3. windupkitty


    Wow, I am so glad to see this car so well loved and preserved! I’ve never seen one in person either…wow. just, wow. You have great car spotting karma, Mark!! And I really respect your restraint…I would have thrown myself in front of it, gotten down on one knee, professed undying love and proposed marriage…how can you look at a car like that and think she’s not the THE ONE!?!?!?

    Totally hilarious post too….love the the “stealth picture” who was hiding from who!?!?!?!

  4. Mark Milligan

    That makes me wonder how many are left around. I have friends back in Nebraska that still have theirs, been kept in a barn all these years. I don’t think they’ve restored it, but they never drove it much even back in the 60’s, when the guy brought it to our house to show it to me. He was crazy about one of my older sisters, and knew I was crazy about cars. I made him put the top down and back up again two or three times.