There are all kinds of things that make a collector car stand out, and sometimes, it’s all about the roofline. Such is the case with the Pick of the Day, a 1961 Ford Starliner with one of the most splendid hardtops ever devised.
Sure, the full-size Ford is otherwise a handsome and well-equipped car, loaded with style and performance. But it’s that sweeping roof with its huge panels of windshield and rear glass, and sparkling chrome accents, that makes it special.
Ford was coasting alongside Chevy with the bubble-top style when it produced the Starliner, the fastback version of the flagship Galaxie, for the 1960 and ’61 model years. Emblematic of the slim and aerodynamic look of Jet Age design, they seem special indeed for today’s collectors. The Starliner brand gave way to the Galaxie 500 in 1962.
The Ford, advertised by a Clarksville, Georgia, dealer on ClassicCars.com, is described as benefiting from a “beautiful restoration on solid car,” powered by its original Thunderbird 390 V8 and a “3-on-the-tree” column shifter for its manual transmission.
“Interior restored back to original condition,” the ad says. “All glass is nice as is chrome and stainless. No rust on detailed undercarriage and beautiful trunk.”
The hardtop roofline does set apart the overall styling of this classic Ford, making it look sporty and evocative. The long roof is characterized by distinct creases along the sides that flow into the rear pillar, which gets a set of chrome flourishes.
The Ford 390cid V8 was an optional engine for the Starliner, newly introduced for the Thunderbird and with the top performance setup delivering 375 horsepower. The dealer notes in the brief description that the engine is fed by a 4-barrel carburetor and has “460 cast-iron headers.”
This Ford runs as good as it looks, the dealer says, with stopping performance provided by power brakes and the shifting described as smooth. Photos of the underside show the very cleanly restored chassis and suspension.
Just under 30,000 Starliners were produced for 1961, making them relatively rare compared with the nearly 350,000 Galaxies produced that year.
The asking price for this attractive classic Ford is $32,000.
To view this vehicle on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.