HomePick of the Day1958 Lincoln Continental convertible

1958 Lincoln Continental convertible


The over-the-top styling of the ’58 Continental doomed it to future obscurity
The over-the-top styling of the ’58 Continental doomed it to future obscurity

It’s tough being the middle child, especially when your older and younger siblings have made major successes of themselves. So it goes for the 1958-1960 Lincoln Continental, whose baroque styling makes it much less memorable than the classic and coveted 1956-57 Continental Mark II or the Mad Men cool squared-rigged Continental that arrived in 1961.

But there are those among us, myself included, who find a certain funky appeal in the over-the-top design of these Lincolns, which were known as the Continental Mark III, Mark IV and Mark V, designating each of their three years of production. (Even Ford seemed to ignore the existence of these cars, coming back in the late 1970s with a new lineup of Continentals repeating the names Mark III, IV and V.)

Those slanty quad headlights, jutting fender sections and wildly complex derriere, which speak of the anything-goes optimism of that era, look either bold or wacky, or more likely a combination of the two.

The heavily chromed rear design is amazingly complex
The heavily chromed rear design is amazingly complex

The Pick of the Day is a gleaming example of the top-of-the-line model, a 1958 Lincoln Continental Mark III convertible in rich black finish and bright-red interior, a desirable color combination that seems to tone down the styling excesses. These cars are most-often seen in the popular pastel colors of their day, which makes them appear all the more outlandish.

OK, I admit I came within a hair’s breadth of buying a 1958 Continental in pinkish choral a few years back, a coupe that looked even wackier than the convertible because of its inward-slanted rear window. Oh yeah, it was weird. Its owner named it Dame Edna. I eventually came to my senses and passed on it.

The Belleview, Washington, classic car dealer advertising the convertible on ClassicCars.com says in the skimpy description that the Continental is in “gorgeous” condition and was previously part of the Rogers Classic Car Museum of Las Vegas. That entire collection of more than 200 cars was sold by Mecum Auctions in February after the death of the proprietor, Jim Rogers. His surviving family donated the proceeds to local charities.

Chrome wire wheels add a classy touch
Chrome wire wheels add a classy touch

The ’58 Continentals were the largest unibody cars built, powered by the massive 430 cid V8 that summoned 375 horsepower, which sounds pretty meaty for even this 5,000-pound behemoth. The ultra-luxury car was equipped with all the top-drawer features of the day.

The asking price is right up there at $69,950, although in line with the current price guide averages for the model. Those fine chrome wire wheels also enhance the value.

Sure, the ’58 Continental is an acquired taste, but this color combination seems to nail it. And you’re unlikely to encounter too many other survivors of this largely forgotten model.

Bob Golfen
Bob Golfen
Bob Golfen is a longtime automotive writer and editor, focusing on new vehicles, collector cars, car culture and the automotive lifestyle. He is the former automotive writer and editor for The Arizona Republic and SPEED.com, the website for the SPEED motorsports channel. He has written free-lance articles for a number of publications, including Autoweek, The New York Times and Barrett-Jackson auction catalogs. A collector car enthusiast with a wide range of knowledge about the old cars that we all love and desire, Bob enjoys tinkering with archaic machinery. His current obsession is a 1962 Porsche 356 Super coupe.
  1. I’ve always been a fan of this generation of Lincoln. This ’58 sports the one year only front bumper and front fenders. The concave sides of the bumpers blend into the concave sides of the front fenders. Lincoln abandoned this styling treatment after the ’58 model year as it was extremely difficult to manufacture and costly which is unfortunate as it was an attractive styling treatment.

  2. I am 81 years old and in 1973 I bought a ’74 Mark 4 (white on white) with all the goodies and wish I had never sold it. Best car I’ve ever owned. I’d love to have another just like it! Spence Graves ( [email protected] )

  3. It’s a Beauty in my Book,, Maybe I am prejudiced as a owner of 1959 Continental Town Car. These
    are not any more over the top than the 1958 GM lineup.

  4. I liked the 1957 Red Lincoln with White interior and the big fins! I knew a really attractive High School Cheerleader that drove one back in the Day. They were a beauty!!,

  5. I have a 1959 mark 1V convertible , red, black interior, it is a great car and crowd pleaser, also 59 Edsel convertible, and a 1929 ford limo town car. , and three Ford woodies. I love them all.

    • I love the 1958 to 1960 Lincolns. I have a 1959 Lincoln Continental Town Car. Formal padded roof original.

  6. I live in newfoundland,canada, the 10th province on the east coast. I have a 1959 lincoln 2 dr diamond blue in color. Love the lincoln, never understood why they were not more popular.

  7. I had two 1958 Lincolns One hard top the other convertible. These are beautiful cars I currently don’t own one now. But I’m looking or a affordable one. My Dad purchased a 1949 Lincoln cosmo in 1951 we restored it 25 years ago and I still have it. The hard top Lincoln I drove in High School. the Convertible I drove as an adult it just barely fit in the garage but was my favorite car .

  8. The 1958 thru 1959 Lincolns were sculptured behemoths that at the time were in direct competition with Cadillac for customer ownership. The trick 14″ hubcaps that got my attention were the “turbine gold anodized fin” style and I am looking for same if they are out there. Please respond to : [email protected] if you know of any available. Thank you.

  9. Just got back from Hershey, great week, so a 59 mark 4 Conv priced at $65,000.00 , I have a red one that is sharp and nice. I love it
    Dale Watson

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