1953 FORD VEGA ROADSTER 'GARDNER SPECIAL' - 15632 Sold* at Scottsdale 35th Anniversary 2006 - Lot #1276 1953 FORD VEGA ROADSTER 'GARDNER SPECIAL' https://cdn.barrett-jackson.com/staging/carlist/items/Fullsize/Cars/15632/15632_Front_3-4_Web.jpg
Lot #1276   1953 FORD VEGA ROADSTER "GARDNER SPECIAL"
Auction Scottsdale 35th Anniversary 2006
Reserve NO RESERVE
Status Sold
Price
Lot 1276
Year 1953
Make FORD
Model
Style VEGA ROADSTER "GARDNER SPECIAL"
*Includes Buyer Commission
Details
VIN 001
Exterior Color SILVER
Interior Color BROWN
Cylinders 8
Engine Size 136
Transmission
Description
Lot #1276 - This "one off" prototype was commissioned by Ford Motor Company and financed by Henry Ford II. Willys Wagner, stylist for the International Division of Ford Motor Company and the legendary Indy racecar designer Frank Kurtis awarded the project to automotive designer Vince Gardner. Vince's resume includes Studebaker, Ford, Budd car body manufacturer, and most notably, the Auburn Automobile Company design department under the direction of Gordon Buehrig, the design team responsible for the famed Cord 810.Vince's influences from his days at the Auburn Automobile Company are clearly evident in the Vega's (Cord like) disappearing headlights. Vince spent over 2 years building the lightweight aluminum bodied roadster. Henry Ford would check on the progress and sometimes bring his celebrity friends, Groucho Marx and Red Skelton. Howard Hughes also paid a visit. Upon the cars completion, Ford Motor Company summoned the "one off" Vega roadster back to Dearborn to celebrate the firms 50th anniversary. Ford displayed the Vega for several years at its Rotunda Exhibition Hall in Dearborn. Then it slipped into obscurity. However, not before a seed was planted. While strolling through the 1953 Paris Auto Show, Henry Ford II, first acknowledged interest in building his own two seat roadster, which would become the 55 Thunderbird. *TITLED AS A1953 GARDNER*
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