Lot #2523 - The rarest of "Birds." Serial #005 was produced at the Michigan factory on September 9, 1954. This car came equipped with the 292 Y-block. Ford-O-Matic transmission, power steering, windows and seats. The wheelbase is 102". The BHP rating is 193 and the weight of the vehicle is 3,250 pounds. One of the first performance road tests of the newly created Thunderbird car was by a national magazine was tested on this same car. Sports Illustrated did an article October 4, 1954, entitled "Testing the Thunderbird," and this T-Bird was used as the test vehicle. Ford verified the status of this car in 1966, designated as the most valuable T-Bird in existence. This car has captured the attention of writers, collectors and car buffs throughout the United States and globally. This car has been featured in magazines, books, promotions, blogs, television shows and more. It has also made many special appearances at various museums, car shows and special events, like the 1984 Olympics. The Ford Motor Company commissioned the car, usually in its private trailer, to various events such as their national conferences and car shows including Ford headquarters in Dearborn, MI. It has been pictured with generations of Ford executives and celebrities such as Carroll Shelby, Barbara Streisand and Jay Leno, to name a few. The history of the Thunderbird dates back to the early 1950s, when a few individuals at the top of Ford's organizational chart conceived the idea of a sports car. Designer Frank Hershey fathered the idea of the sports car program that became the Thunderbird. The real history of this car dates back to 1965, when a well-admired gentleman and car buff by the name George Watts came across what he called "a needle in a haystack." After Ford officially verified the status of his car as the first production Thunderbird, he meticulously restored the "original" to original. After documenting every step with photos, it appeared three years later — as if it just rolled off the assembly line. The rest is history.