See how much 1950s Ford Thunderbirds changed during their first years on the road

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1950s Ford Thunderbirds

Note: This article may feature affiliate links to Amazon or other companies, and purchases made via these links may earn us a small commission at no additional cost to you. Find out more here.

The Ford Thunderbird was introduced in 1955, and quickly became a favorite with car buyers… but that didn’t stop Ford from making a lot of changes to the model during those first five years. Here’s a look!

Enchantment unlimited … the 1955 Ford Thunderbird

A distinguished kind of personal can that combines high performance and high style for a whole new world of driving fun.

The Thunderbird’s long, low, thoroughbred lines say “action”! And they speak the truth. A toe-touch on the gas pedal means no waiting.

There’s breath-taking Trigger-Torque performance with the new Thunderbird Special V-8 that’s specially mated with transmission and rear axle.

With a low center of gravity (from cowl to ground is just over three feet) and Ford’s Ball-Joint Front Suspension, the Thunderbird corners as if on rails. The fun doesn’t stop here, for the Thunderbird is long on convenience.

Two tops are available. There’s a removable glass-fibre hard top… and a smart convertible fabric top. Windows roll up. The extra-wide foam-rubber-cushioned seat moves forward or back, up or down, at the touch of a button.

The baggage compartment is ample. There’s a telescoping steering wheel. And you can have power steering, power brakes, and power windows… Fordomatic or Overdrive.

Why not call your Ford Dealer today and get complete details on this new and distinctive personal car, First deliveries of the thrilling Thunderbird are now being made.

1955 Ford Thunderbird (1954 debut)


1950s Ford Thunderbirds: That’s why the lady drives a Ford! (1955)

She loves that Thunderbird styling! She trusts that Trigger-Torque power!

Lovely to look at, delightful to drive — that’s what makes this year’s Ford the most wanted of all cars… the one most women have designs on.

Thank the Ford Thunderbird for patterning the young, poised appearance of the ’55 Fords. (Who doesn’t enjoy a bit of head turning?)

Thank the Ford engineers those far-thinking men — for creating the obedient Y-block V-8 engine, and building into it a new kind of trustworthy power — Trigger-Torque power.

See the new Ford. Select from 16 body styles. Choose from a brilliant array of color-matched interiors. You’ll agree that very few things are designed with the lady in mind like the 1955 Ford.

MORE: See the 1960 Ford station wagons, including Tudor & Fordor Falcon Wagons

1955 Ford Thunderbird cars


Anne Cole tells why women love the new Thunderbird (1959)

The young and vivacious Vice-President of Cole of California commutes to her office (and crosses the country!) in her new Thunderbird.

Anne Cole is one of the youngest, prettiest, and most successful executives in the world of fashion. Her name and her swimsuits are known to fashion-conscious women all over the country. One of the rewards of success for Miss Cole is her new Thunderbird.

“It’s a wonderful car,” says Miss Cole. “When I’m Los Angeles,  I drive from my home to my office every day. It’s only 20 miles — but you know L.A. traffic! Even so, I handle my T-bird as though I were the world’s greatest driver, which I’m not. It’s just that it’s so easy to handle. Its so easy, in fact, that I drive from the Coast to New York twice a year. That’s really traveling!”

“But do you know what I like best of all? The way I look in my Thunderbird! It makes me look glamorous. I feel glamorous in it. It’s that kind of car. And let’s face it — a car is an accessory these days. And accessories must be smart.”

“Next time you look at cars with your husband, let him see how you look in a Thunderbird. Let him see how he feels in a Thunderbird. Let him drive it around the corner — just once will do it — and he’ll buy it for you. You’ll have a Thunderbird all your own!

Why women love the 1959 Ford Thunderbird


There’s a touch of Thunderbird in every Ford

The way it looks… the way it goes… the way it’s built… everything about the 1955 Ford shows it was cut from the same cloth as the heart-stealing Thunderbird.

You’ll see the resemblance in the graceful flair of Ford’s long, low lines… and in the skillful harmonizing of interior colors.

1955 There's a touch of Thunderbird in every Ford


The ’56 Ford Thunderbird

And now: the latest version of America’s most exciting car: Ford Thunderbird for ’56

Ready to give you a new lease on driving fun, this newest version of America’s favorite dream car is more stunning in style… more thrilling in power… more luxurious in comfort.

Here, poised for flight you see what many people hardly dreamed possible: a more beautiful, more powerful, more distinctive Thunderbird.

The graceful contours of its long, low lines… the unique flair of its new spare-tire mounting… the dazzling sheen of its new two-tone colors are but a hint of its newness.

It is when you put the selector in drive position and nudge the gas pedal of a Fordomatic model that the new Thunderbird will really take you by the heart. Nestled beneath that sleek hood lies a new 225-h.p. Thunderbird Y-8, ready to revise all your ideas of how a car should respond. 

Now, you may choose hard top, soft top or both. There’s a glass-fibre hard top and a foldaway fabric lop. Now, the interiors are richer — more beautiful than ever.

Now, you get the added protection of Ford’s exclusive Lifeguard design. Now, the ride is smoother — the cornering is flatter than ever.  And, as always, you may have optional power steering, brakes, windows and seat. 

ALSO SEE: 1954 Ford Ranch Wagons: 2-door double-duty dandy

1956 Ford Thunderbird


America’s most individual car — 1950s Ford Thunderbirds (1958)

Even the most gregarious man can be a Thunderbird man now, Family? Friends? Take ’em along!

Take them in style — Thunderbird style! The new T-bird has four of the most comfortable, most luxurious full-sized fine-car seats you can imagine. Plenty of room all around. H

ead room. Leg room. Shoulder room, And enough trunk room to take care of the full luggage requirements of four people on a cross-country trip!

All this comfort, all this room, in a car that’s all T-bird in spirit. in power, in performance! As always. the new Thunderbird handles deftly and parks easily. It maneuvers and corners like a sports car!

Your Ford Dealer invites you to see and drive this excitingly different car. He’ll tell you the most startling news of all: You can own the new 4-passenger Thunderbird for far less than you would pay for other luxury cars!

1958 Ford Thunderbird cars

ALSO SEE: Ford Edsel: See all 18 models of the 1950s car that failed disastrously & lost more than a quarter billion dollars


“America’s most becoming car” (1959)

(and it’s just right for you… in every way!)

Like a bit of flattery? Flattery is what you’ll get in your new Ford Thunderbird. This jewel of a car has an unmistakable eclat that sets it — and you — quite apart. And, joy of joys, it’s just right for you…in every way. It’s your size!

It seats four people in the most elegant comfort, vet it handles and parks with far greater ease than other luxury cars. Thunderbird is, in fact, the only luxury car a woman can really call her own. And it costs far less than other luxury cars.

Pink 59 Ford Thunderbird - America's most becoming car


The car that’s all the things you are… (1959)

The new Ford Thunderbird.

It’s you stepping out — Your new Thunderbird might have been specially designed for gala evenings: it has a flair and distinctive elegance all its own. And its doors are so wide you can sweep in and out with bouffant gown unruffled — and your poise intact!

It’s you in your play mood — Smart, original, versatile… your new Thunderbird is in the mood for fun when you are. This car is always fun to drive because, bless its heart, its just your size! It’s roomy yet compact, a joy to handle… and so easy to park!

It’s you, the Leader — You set the style. you set the pace wherever you go, driving the prestige car every woman would love to own. Yet the 1959 Thunderbird actually costs far less than other luxury cars. See your Ford dealer. Drive this jewel of a car!

(costumes by Arnold Scassi)

The 59 Ford Thunderbird classic cars

DON’T MISS THIS: See the hot Ford Thunderbirds from the ’60s

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