1956 Ford Fairlane

Ford celebrated its 50th Anniversary in business in 1953. To mark the occasion, Ford released a hardcover book entitled Ford at Fifty, which both looked back at the company's history and ahead to the promising future. On the cover were the futuristic X-100 and X-500 show cars, both of which displayed Ford's growing emphasis on dream car-inspired styling and Worth More features enhancing passenger comfort.
Ford vehicles sold well during the early 1950s, offering customers strong value and conservative value. The flathead V-8 had reached its development peak and clearly a dose of innovation was in order. After the introduction of the all-new Y-Block V-8 engine for 1954, the 1955 Ford models were completely redesigned, with wider, lower, and longer bodies finished in two-tone finishes with distinctive brightwork and striking interiors.

Ford sold the Fairlane between 1955 and 1970, with its name being derived from Henry Ford's estate, Fair Lane, near Dearborn, Michigan. Initially, it was a full-sized car but later became a mid-sized car from the 1962 model year. The first generation Fairlane was sold in 1955 and 1956 and served as a replacement for the Crestline as Ford's top-of-the-line full-size offering. It included six different body styles including the Crown Victoria Skyliner which had a tinted, transparent plastic roof. Other body styles included a convertible Sunliner, Victoria hardtop coupe, sedan, and a Crown Victoria coupe. All were given the trademark stainless-steel 'Fairlane stripe' on the side. Power was sourced from a 223 cubic-inch straight-six and a 272 cubic-inch V8. An optional Y-block 292 CID V8, called the Thunderbird V-8, was also available.

Full-size Ford models were grouped along the entry-level Mainline Six and V-8, Customline Six and V-8, and the top-of-the-line Fairlane, also in Six and V-8 forms. Few outward appearance changes occurred for the 1956 Fairlane, instead, the focus was on the interior and under the hood. Styling for 1956 was essentially a mild update of the 1955 design. Safety was emphasized, with these production-vehicle enhancements called their Lifeguard Design. Features included a deep-center Lifeguard steering wheel which helped ensure the horn button would not cause injury in a crash, extra strong double grip door latches, Lifeguard padding (optional) for the dash and sun visor, and Lifeguard seat belts (optional). Other updates applied to the Ford line for 1956 included the adoption of a 12-volt electrical system and bolder 'Fairlane stripe' bodyside trim.

The overhead-valve six-cylinder engine had a Holley one-barrel carburetor and delivered 137 horsepower. The 272 CID V8 had 173 horsepower and the 292 CID had 200 horsepower. The wheelbase measures 115.5 inches and its length was 198.5 inches. A three-speed manual transmission with a semi-centrifugal-type clutch, three-speed helical gears, and synchronizers for second and third gears was standard. Three-speed with automatic overdrive was optional, as was the Ford-O-Matic automatic.

A total of 665,106 examples of the Fairlane were sold in 1956, accounting for nearly fifty percent of Ford's total US sales. The most popular body style was the Town Sedan which found 244,672 willing buyers. The Club Victoria had 117,735 sales while the two-door Club Sedan had 142,629 sales.

The top-line Fairlane series was very successful, and with it, Ford consolidated its market position during the challenging 1956 model year.


by Daniel Vaughan | Jun 2019

Related Reading : Ford Fairlane History

The name Fairlane came from Henry Fords Fair Lane mansion location in Dearborn, Michigan. The Ford Fairlane was introduced in 1955 as Fords full-size model and was available in six different body styles. The vehicle could be assembled as a 2 door club sedan, a 4 door town sedan, a Victoria 2 door hardtop, a Sunliner convertible, a Crown Victoria, or a Crown Victoria with a plastic top. There....
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1956 Vehicle Profiles

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner

The 1956 Ford was quite similar to its 1955 counterpart. There were some subtle exterior changes, including larger tail lights. The interior, however, was completely restyled for 1956. The instrument panel was completely redesigned and, in a nod to s....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

Six Series Sunliner Convertible

Ford's top-of-the-line Fairlane Sunliner, with an amazing production run of 58,147 units, was America's best-selling convertible in 1956. Part of its appeal was its affordable price, just $2,459 without options. Although the basic styling was similar....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Club Sedan

The Ford Fairlane Crown Victoria is easily recognizable by its distinguished chrome trim that crosses the roof and door pillar. This Crown Victoria features the optional 312 cubic-inch (5.1 L) 214/225 horsepower overhead valve engine which came out ....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner

Chassis Num: M6FC215633

For 1955, the Ford models were completely redesigned with longer, lower and wider bodies and offered with a broad range of V8 engines as well as distinctive brightwork and elegant interior treatments. The Fords were mildly restyled for 1956 including....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Town Sedan

This 1956 Ford Fairlane is of exceptional quality from the body, to the paint and chrome. Replication of the Original Interior. The car has the original engine, transmission and suspension. Restoration of the exterior and interior took 1 1/2 years....[continue reading]

Six Series Sunliner Convertible

Chassis Num: M6LC108231

Ford 1956, Ford emphasized passenger safety and all their cars had deep-dish steering wheels, and seat belts and padded dashboards were optional equipment. ....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Crown Victoria

Chassis Num: M6RC128665

This 1956 Ford Crown Victoria is one of only 603 produced by Ford in the last year of the glass top. The V8 engine displaces 292 cubic-inches and offers 202 horsepower. It has an automatic gearbox, zip-out headliner, power steering, power brakes, and....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Club Victoria

This Ford Fairlane Victoria Hardtop is finished in Peacock Blue and Colonial White and has been given a rotisserie restoration. It is powered by a Thunderbird 312 cubic-inch V-8 with a 3-speed manual transmission. It is nicely optioned inside and out....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner

Chassis Num: M6RC-119932

This Ford Fairlane Sunliner Convertible is finished in Mandarin Orange and Raven Black and is one of 58,147 produced for 1956. It was purchased new by a lady in Zila, Washington. The next owner would put the car into storage for a decade until it was....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner

Chassis Num: M6GC166664

The 1956 Ford models had a 12-volt electrical system, 18-millimeter anti-fouling spark plugs, an all-new interior, an upgraded grille and trim, and improved safety. Ford added a padded dash, a sun visor, and a newly shaped steering wheel. ....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Crown Victoria Skyliner

Chassis Num: M6KW160585

The Ford Motor Company celebrated its 50th anniversary in 1953 with a hardcover book, Ford at Fifty, which both looked back at the company's rich history and ahead at its future. On the cover were the X-100 and X-500 show cars. The following year, pr....[continue reading]

1956 Ford Fairlane vehicle information

V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner

Chassis Num: M6GC135515
Engine Num: 292

This 1956 Ford Fairlane Sunliner is an all original, rust free, example finished in its original color of Bermuda Blue. It has been restored and is powered by the original Thunderbird engine, and automatic transmission, both completely rebuilt. Optio....[continue reading]

V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner
 
Six Series Sunliner Convertible
 
V-8 Club Sedan
 
V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner
Chassis #: M6FC215633 
V-8 Town Sedan
 
Six Series Sunliner Convertible
Chassis #: M6LC108231 
V-8 Crown Victoria
Chassis #: M6RC128665 
V-8 Club Victoria
 
V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner
Chassis #: M6RC-119932 
V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner
Chassis #: M6GC166664 
V-8 Crown Victoria Skyliner
Chassis #: M6KW160585 
V-8 Convertible Coupe Sunliner
Chassis #: M6GC135515 

Recent Vehicle Additions

Performance and Specification Comparison

Price Comparison

1956 Fairlane
$2,500-$16,795
1956 Ford Fairlane Price Range: $2,045 - $2,500

$1,750 - $1,895

Model Year Production

#1#2#3Ford
1961Ford (1,338,790)Chevrolet (1,318,014)Volkswagen (807,488)1,338,790
1960Chevrolet (1,653,168)Ford (1,439,370)Toyota (1,068,321)1,439,370
1959Chevrolet (1,462,140)Ford (1,450,953)Volkswagen (575,407)1,450,953
1958Chevrolet (1,142,460)Ford (987,945)Volkswagen (451,526)987,945
1957Ford (1,676,449)Chevrolet (1,505,910)Plymouth (726,009)1,676,449
1956Chevrolet (1,567,117)Ford (1,408,478)Buick (572,024)1,408,478
1955Chevrolet (1,704,667)Ford (1,451,157)Buick (738,814)1,451,157
1954Ford (1,165,942)Chevrolet (1,143,561)Plymouth (463,148)1,165,942
1953Chevrolet (1,346,475)Ford (1,247,542)Plymouth (650,451)1,247,542
1952Chevrolet (818,142)Ford (671,733)Plymouth (396,000)671,733
1951Chevrolet (1,229,986)Ford (1,013,381)Plymouth (611,000)1,013,381

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