The Ford Thunderbird was introduced in 1955 as a sporty, luxurious two-seat car to compete with the Chevrolet Corvette. The original designs featured either a powered soft-top convertible or a removable fiberglass roof, with restrained lines and more modest fins than most cars of the era. T-Birds, as they were often called, soon overtook Corvettes both in sales and speed. The Thunderbird’s standard V8 engine was able to reach 114 mph, and could reach 60 mph in under 10 seconds.

While not a true sports car, the T-Bird caught on as a personal luxury vehicle, despite its limiting soft springs and low-geared steering. The Thunderbird’s 1957 update added clunkier rear fins, and in 1958 the entire vehicle was altered for a boxier, low-riding four-seat design. After 1961, the Thunderbird took on a sleek, bullet-shaped look, although the model was actually much larger than '50s T-Birds.

In the 1970s, Ford incorporated larger engines, power side windows, and air-conditioning to the standard Thunderbird models. The 1975 design became one of the first American cars to offer power disc brakes on all four wheels. Ford ultimately created 13 different generations of Thunderbirds until officially ending production of the car in 2005.


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Vintage Comparison Test: 1979 Corvette vs. 1979 GMC Prototype Sport Truck
Super Chevy Network, February 4th

Corvettes have appeared frequently in Motor Trend magazine, often as the subject of comparison tests. In the Vette's earliest years the magazine liked to compare it with the other two-seat personal car on the market, Ford's Thunderbird. Later, as the...Read more

Downtime: Under the hood of landlords' car collection
RichmondBizSense, January 29th

The couple sold an old Ford Thunderbird they'd had in college to scrounge up the funds to buy their first piece of real property – a house in Lakeside. Decades later, their collection of vehicles and ... They keep the vintage cars stored in garages...Read more

Modern landscaping and outdoor living
The Desert Sun, January 28th

The gem of this tour is a rare opportunity to visit an iconic estate in Thunderbird, neighboring the Gerald R. Ford house. ... At Blue Skies is an eye popping transformation of a vintage double wide into an exciting new home featuring all the bells and...Read more

Sy in the Sky
Easy Reader, January 27th

Merlyn “Sy” Symons' hanger at the Torrance Airport was adorned with war medals and seven decades of photos, antique airplane parts, and tools, all housed around his cherished midnight black 1947 Beechcraft Bonanza V-tail airplane, the only airplane he...Read more

Vintage Ferrari once owned by Nicholas Cage on display at Michigan ...
MLive.com, January 27th

Spezia also brought along a "split window" 1963 Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray and a 1963 Studebaker Avanti, a sport coupe built by Indiana-based Studebaker to compete with the Corvette and Ford Thunderbird. While the show also features a "Million Dollar ...Read more

The HYT H2 Tradition: Timeless In A Surprisingly Steampunk Way
Quill & Pad, January 24th

For people of that mind, car companies have built retro-looking vehicles on modern platforms such as the final generation of the Ford Thunderbird or the Nissan Figaro, both of which harken back to the 1950s with body styling and details reminiscent of...Read more

Joe Jonas takes a spin in classic Thunderbird convertible in LA
Daily Mail, January 19th

The 26-year-old manned a 1960 Ford Thunderbird convertible with a male friend, cruising the streets of Los Angeles. The singer looked focused while behind the steering wheel, donning a bright blue vintage inspired bomber jacket. Scroll down for video...Read more

10 things you should know about the Starbird-Devlin car show (+video)
Wichita Eagle, January 13th

Randy Hazen of Mulvane holds a model 1964 Thunderbird while standing in front of the T-bird his parents bought new in '64 at the Starbird-Devlin Rod & Customs Charities Car Show at Century II. Ford dealerships .... If you look closely, you'll see that...Read more