The Truth About Cars » ford fairlane http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Sun, 19 Oct 2014 11:58:25 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars editors@ttac.com editors@ttac.com (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars » ford fairlane http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/wp-content/themes/ttac-theme/images/logo.gif http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com Junkyard Find: 1970 Ford Fairlane 500 Station Wagon http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/08/junkyard-find-1970-ford-fairlane-500-station-wagon/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2014/08/junkyard-find-1970-ford-fairlane-500-station-wagon/#comments Wed, 13 Aug 2014 13:00:18 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=888105 We haven’t seen a Ford Fairlane in this series since this ’65 sedan, way back in 2010. We see station wagons here all the time, of course, the last couple being this ’66 Toyota crown and this ’86 Nissan Maxima. Our most recent Detroit station wagon Junkyard Find was this ’72 Pinto (or this ’60 […]

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18 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinWe haven’t seen a Ford Fairlane in this series since this ’65 sedan, way back in 2010. We see station wagons here all the time, of course, the last couple being this ’66 Toyota crown and this ’86 Nissan Maxima. Our most recent Detroit station wagon Junkyard Find was this ’72 Pinto (or this ’60 Valiant, if you don’t consider the Pinto to be a proper Detroit station wagon). This ’70 Fairlane is rare indeed; I can’t recall having seen any midsize Ford wagon of this vintage on the street or in the junkyard for many years.
17 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinThere’s a lot of nostalgia for the big American family wagons among some of us who grew up in the 1960s and 1970s, though most of those cars are the full-sized machines built on the Galaxie/Impala/Fury/Ambassador platforms, not the smaller midsize ones such as this Fairlane. My family never had a station wagon, preferring the Chevy Beauville passenger van as our family-outing-mobile.
10 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinWindsor V8 with an enormous AC compressor, the same thing you saw under the hoods of millions of Fairlanes, Montegos, Torinos, Cyclones, and Rancheros of the era.
01 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinThis one took kids to soccer practice 40 years ago.
05 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinGuam pride!
06 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinIt’s not rusty and wouldn’t be a huge challenge to restore, but the love of old wagons among Generation X types hasn’t translated into much real-world willingness to spend money and time fixing them up.

The ’68 was an earlier generation of this platform, but it had the same “action size” as the ’70.

01 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 02 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 03 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 04 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 05 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 06 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 07 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 08 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 09 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 10 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 11 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 12 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 13 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 14 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 15 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 16 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 17 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 18 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 19 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin 20 - 1970 Ford Fairlane Station Wagon- Down On the Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin

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Trio of Doomed Fords Destined To Become Geely Hysouls, Universe Keeps Expanding http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2010/12/trio-of-doomed-fords-destined-to-become-geely-hysouls-universe-keeps-expanding/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2010/12/trio-of-doomed-fords-destined-to-become-geely-hysouls-universe-keeps-expanding/#comments Wed, 08 Dec 2010 14:00:17 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=376148 After being away from the quick-turnover self-service junkyards of Northern California (where Guangzhou-bound container ships full of crushed vehicles leave the Port of Oakland every day) for a few months, I decided to check out one of the biggest when visiting from Denver last week. I found a ’62 Comet, a ’65 Fairlane, and a […]

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After being away from the quick-turnover self-service junkyards of Northern California (where Guangzhou-bound container ships full of crushed vehicles leave the Port of Oakland every day) for a few months, I decided to check out one of the biggest when visiting from Denver last week. I found a ’62 Comet, a ’65 Fairlane, and a ’72 Mustang huddled together in The Crusher’s waiting room.

I’ve always preferred the Comet to the Falcon, and not just because Charles Bukowski drove a ’62 Comet. The first-gen Falcon was built in Argentina until 1991, but early Comets— even six-cylinder sedans like this one— are quite rare. In a couple of weeks, the number of ’62s will be reduced by one, because Schnitzer Steel will be mashing this battered-but-not-particularly-rusty example into a cube and shipping it off to China.

As I contemplated the demise of the Comet, I saw the snout of another vintage FoMoCo product peeking out from the endless line of Tauruses and Tracers. Is that an early-70s Mustang?

Why, yes, it is! About 125,000 ’72 Mustangs were built, which makes it rarer than the ’62 Comet and much rarer than its mid-1960s predecessors. Still, a higher percentage of these cars survives today, plus many of the components on this one have been harvested to keep living examples on the road, so I’m still more bummed about the Comet sedan.

Holy crap! Whoever did the bodywork on this car must have bought Bondo by the 55-gallon drum.

Is it possible that there’s a third old Ford nearby?

This 1965 Ford Fairlane coupe, complete with V8 and Cruise-O-Matic transmission, looks like it was in fairly decent shape… before someone decided to take an orbital sander to the paint. How? Why?

One rainy Bay Area winter is all it took to complete the damage. Next stop, Chinese steel factory!

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Auto-Biography 7: Awakening http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2007/03/auto-biography-7-awakening/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2007/03/auto-biography-7-awakening/#comments Sat, 10 Mar 2007 11:40:19 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=3296 220se-again.jpgAs an immigrant back in the days of the “melting pot,” I was as eager to assimilate as a wide-eyed frat pledge amongst his potential brothers. I tried to forget German, made futile efforts to learn baseball and remained deeply smitten by American automobiles. I repressed memories of my abandoned European flames: Porsche, Mercedes and Jaguar. But my jilted lovers found me hiding in Iowa, and began to torment me with their seductive powers.

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220se-again.jpgAs an immigrant back in the days of the “melting pot,” I was as eager to assimilate as a wide-eyed frat pledge amongst his potential brothers. I tried to forget German, made futile efforts to learn baseball and remained deeply smitten by American automobiles. I repressed memories of my abandoned European flames: Porsche, Mercedes and Jaguar. But my jilted lovers found me hiding in Iowa, and began to torment me with their seductive powers.

My violin teacher drove to school in a baby-blue Porsche 356 Cabriolet she’d picked up in Germany. (The Teutonic roadster still wore its white oval export plates.) Her profession was auto-appropriate; the boxer’s piston quartet con blower performed its concerto wherever she drove. I could hear the Porsche’s siren song from blocks away as I walked home from school.

One rainy afternoon, my teacher offered me a ride home. Oh, those tan stitched-leather seats! The exquisite VDO instruments. The impeccable steering wheel with its Porsche coat of arms. That sound. If it weren’t for her mustache, I would have prayed for a kidnapping.

When new neighbors moved in down the street, they brought a shiny black Mercedes 220 SE sedan with them. Comparisons between the doctor’s imported German sedan with our domestic Ford Fairlane were inevitable. They were both black and similarly sized. Both cars sported red interiors and questionable finlets on their hind-quarters. Beyond that, there was a world of difference between them.

The Mercedes’ deeply-tucked, anatomically-correct front buckets and back seat made the hard plasticky slabs in the Fairlane look and feel like the benches at our local Greyhound bus station. The Merc’s well-wooded and padded dash, with its beautiful plated castings protruding from its surface, dripped with German Kunstwerk.  The Fairlanes’… didn’t.

In the engine room, the Mercedes’ fuel-injected OHC six bristled with alloy castings, making the Ford V8 look primitive. Adding insult to injury, the little six made more horsepower than the eight.

More painful observations: The Mercedes automatic had four speeds; the Ford-O-Matic had two. And a glance under the rear revealed a sophisticated low-pivot IRS and coils, versus a solid axle and leaf springs.

A brisk ride in the neighbors’ 220 SE made the sum of its advanced parts all too obvious. Instead of wallowing along, this baby felt planted down, rock solid. The well-damped long-travel suspension soaked up the frost heaves and expansion joints like a black leopard on the run. The nervous six’s raspy warm-up scales around town turned into a silky soprano aria at speed.

The doctor’s other car was a black Ford Model A, which he drove to work when the whim struck. It was already an antique. We played “The Untouchables” in it for hours on end. As I got to know the Model A and the Benz better, I began to have a creeping realization that our Fairlane had a lot more in common with its Ford progenitor than I wanted to admit.

The final blow was the great modeling showdown with my older brother. One Saturday, we bought car models at Kresge’s. I picked a modest-scale 1962 Corvette. He grabbed a brand new model: a magnificent large scale red Jaguar XK-E.

My brother was blessed with a surgeon’s hands. He collected broken radios, disassembled them, and created new electronic devices from scratch. My hands fell more into the farmer/carpenter vocational arena. They were clumsy executors of my “the more the better” philosophy regarding cement. The fact that my ‘Vette model had about one-tenth the parts of his superbly complex XK-E only underscored the lopsided-ness of this sibling rivalry.

Never having seen a Jaguar XK-E in the flesh, his model blew me away. Its deliciously-long front end was like a well-sucked cherry Popsicle on a hot summer day. Flipping up the plastic bonnet revealed that worship-inducing cathedral of an engine, surrounded by a spider’s web of tiny chromed or shiny black parts, punctuated by the exclamation marks of the knock-off wire wheels.

Turning over the model and looking under that red mini-skirt rear end was like opening your parent’s family medicine book and seeing things you couldn’t have even imagined. The Jag’s complex erector-set conglomeration of struts, springs, shocks, in-board disc brakes, u-joints and half-shafts was a complete revelation.

I knew all too well that my Corvette’s cement-pocked body hid a pathetic cart axle and leaf springs. Before long, it too was consigned to another pyrotechnic “accident” in the drive-way.

I felt beat-up. The new ’63 Sting Ray was soothing balm on my wounds. But my unconditional love for American wheels was never quite the same again.  The flame flickered on and off for another twenty years, until it was finally snuffed out that day in 1985 when I traded in my Ford T-Bird Turbo Coupe for a new Mercedes 300E.

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