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Old 07-16-2008, 12:48   #1 (permalink)
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Plain Jane, Peformance 63 Fairlane?

Found this site inadvertantly, but since I owned a 63 Fairlane with some unusual characteristics, I thought I'd post and see if anyone knew anything about this type of car. In 1968 I bought a 1963 4 door Fairlane 500 with a 260 V-8 and 3 speed. Not too unusual until you opened the hood and found two things, first a factory stock 4-barrel and second, fiberglass fenders. It also had oversize by one size tires, but they could easily have been put on after market. I bought the car from Worthington Ford, Worthington Minn. a dealership owned by my wife's uncle. He had sold the car originally for use by a salesman for a cookie company (Sathers) in Round Lake, Iowa. It was a high mileage car with 110,000 on it when I got it, but ran like it was barely broken in, all highway miles. Once when in for service (blow back through the PCV valve, common in 63's), I talked to one of the mechanics that had worked on the car since it was new. He swore that both the carb and fenders were 63 options and had always been on the car, he showed me some tags glued to the inside of the fender near the front, with Ford ID's on them. I can understand the carb, since the 260 was the same engine as a 289, and lots of 289's had 4 barrels, but the fiberglass fenders surprise me. I understand that late in the model run you could special order 2 door post Fairlanes (like the ones used in the 64 Thunderbolts), with fiberglass fenders and lots of deletes, but it really surprises me to have had them on a 4-door. In 63 2 and 4 door models supposedly used the same front fenders. Maybe they did it for gas mileage, it got 24 mpg on the highway, and the faster you drove the better the mileage. We used to crusie across South Dakota at 85 and got even better mileage. My wifes uncle did not remember anything about the 63's, nor were there any records at the dealership, so we couldn't find the original order. Since it was a company car, and the company didn't keep any records on "old" cars that they traded in, they were of no help. They had lots of info on current cars and trucks (all from Worthington Ford), including original purchase orders, but threw it all away when the traded them in. It was 1970 when I got really curious and tried to find out some things.
Unfortuneately in 1969 we traded it in on a 69 Mercury Montego MX Wagon (again with some wierd performance options) with a 351 Windsor, bad move in 69, we should have kept the Fairlane. It was purchased by the mechanic who had worked on it, and 4 years later when the dealership was sold and closed he was still driving it.
If anyone has ever heard of this kind of strange stuff on the 63 Fairlanes it would sure satisfy my curiosity.
I now live in Arizona and have a chance to buy a 63 2 door post with the same characteristics, but I want it to be original, not after market, so I need to find out if these things really did ever exist, or were they early Speical Operations vehicles.
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