Tuesday, October 25, 2011

1960 Ford 4-door Ranch Wagon

"Loadspace so big that it resembles a bowling alley is what you get in these 1960 Ford Station Wagons! With tailgate open, floor length measures more than ten feet . . . floor width more than five feet! You get over 97 cubic feet of easy-loading cargo space — over five times the capacity of an average household deepfreezer! What's more, as America's wagon specialist, Ford has designed these 1960 wagons so they are easier to convert than ever. The second seat cushion simply folds forward on top of the bottom cushion. In 9-passenger wagons the third seat converts more easily, too. Even a child can do it! This is real wagon convenience!"

A year after Fidel Castro's troops declared victory in Havana, and up until the new government began to seize U.S. businesses and properties in mid-1960, american cars still reached Cuba by the shipload (thanks, Caristas). During that transitory period, probably no one ever imagined, that the new government would keep the island in its stranglehold for the next decades. Among the "late arrivals", a 1960 Ford is quite a frequent sight. Our pictured Ford Ranch Wagon from Cienfuegos might look battered, but it's still a capable transport.

The dawn of the new decade also marked a significant change in american car styling: suddenly the ornate and flamboyant forms of the 50s were gone, and the car companies embraced a futuristic and much cleaner styling direction. While others went through a transitory phase by merging old and new styling elements for a while, Ford soared into the 60s with a decidedly different look. The new fullsize Fords were large cars, and being even a half-inch wider than the 1959 Cadillacs makes them probably the widest passenger car ever sold in America. For the new lineup, Ford reduced the amount of chrome trim and abandoned the "50s-fashion" panoramic windscreen of the previous models by re-introducing straight A-posts. Especially these new A-posts and the full-width eggcrate front grille with its four integrated headlights made for a very clean and modern looking design.

Among the station wagons, the Ranch Wagon was the lowest trim level, sporting vinyl seats and rubber floor mats, instead of more luxurious "Nylon Pattern" seats and "Vinyl-Tex" floor carpet of the better appointed Country Squire models. But it shared the gigantic trunk space with them: rear seats folded down, you could load 97 cubic feet of luggage, or carry pieces as big as 126 x 62,8 inches (320 x 160 cm) with open tailgate. And knowing this, who minds rubber floor mats?

1 Kommentare:

Caristas said...

Always fun to see a 1960 model, especially when so many people think that no post-1959 American cars were imported. The straight front axle that's been added to this Ford certainly wouldn't improve the ride, but would help it stand up to rough roads.