Kudos to Mr. G. M. Quinsberry. Although you may be wondering who the f*&^ he was, he knew a good thing when he saw it the day he purchased a 1956 Ford Thunderbird new off the lot from Crouch Holland Ford in Irving-Dallas County, Texas. This dude had some good taste, as evidenced by its collectibility and popularity to this day.
The Thunderbird (or T-bird), produced between 1955-2005 has witnessed eleven generations come and go, but perhaps none is more coveted and beautiful than the first-gen offered from 1955-1957. Back in the day, the Thunderbird was conceived in response to Chevrolet’s newly minted Corvette. Although intended to be a retort to Chevy, the T-bird was marketed less as a sports car and more as a personal luxury vehicle, thus establishing a new class of car defined by Ford. Apparently, this strategy worked because Ford sold over 16,000 T-birds in 1955 compared to Chevy’s paltry 700 Corvettes. Ford would end up selling over 4.4 million units by the time production stopped in 2005.
This bird could fly, and for good reason. There are very few vehicles that are able to hit a homerun out of the gate, and the first-generation Thunderbird did it in spades. Although a modest overall performer, what the T-bird lacked in agility, it made up for in its sleek, futuristic, and incredible good looks. This car was Africa hot.
Perhaps no better representative of the breed could be offered than our featured 1956 black over red Thunderbird. This multi-award winner probably looks better than the day it rolled off the showroom floor. The paint and interior look flawless, including eye-searing brightwork, brand-new wire-spoke wheels, freshly refurbished tops (hard, soft, and tonneau), including a hard top with optional port hole, and restored mechanicals to ensure you can stop and start quickly enough to avoid all the gawkers stopped dead in their tracks after seeing this beauty.
Admittedly, I have a soft spot for T-birds as our family owned a mid-70s and mid 80’s version. But those cars could not hold a candle to the 1956, the only year that stored the spare tire externally of the trunk on the continental-style rear bumper. It is a distinct look that adds a special quality to this particular model. By virtue of the photos, it’s easy to see what puts the mint in Minter’s Thunderbirds, which is where you will find this rare and immaculate bird for $96,500.
Engine: 312 cu in. V-8
Transmission: 3-speed automatic
Mileage: 52,000 miles
Restoration per Original Factory Invoice and Data Plate
Limited Miles Since Restoration Odo. 52,000 Miles with Documentation
All 3 Original Tops
Fully Loaded with Every Power Accessory Available in 1956
Prev. Rebuilt 312-224 H.P. V/8 = 4BBL
Rebuilt Ford-O-Matic 3-Speed Automatic Transmission
Rebuilt Fords Master Guide Power Steering
Rebuilt Fords Swift Sure Power Brakes
4-Way Power Seat
Engine Dress Up Options
Town and Country Radio
5 New Thunderbird Real Wire Wheels
Rare Metal Continental Kit Splash Pan
Accessory Back Up Lights
Restored Original Black Hartz Cloth Canvas Late Style Convertible Top
New Black Tonneau Top Original Raven Black Port Hole Top
Aluminized Exhaust with Smitty’s Mufflers
Originally delivered to Crouch Holland Ford in Irving-Dallas County, Texas. Sold New to G. M. Quinsberry. Documentation of 3 Previous Owners. Most Important – Always owned in Southwest Dry climates with Low Humidity.
Total Mechanical Check in Minter’s Restoration Facility Insuring all Gauges and Instruments to Work.
Awards to this 1956 Thunderbird Credits:
Lots of Documentation Including Original 1956 Ford Factory Invoice