Price comparison 1957 & 1959

I am "new" to this T'bird world and wanted to buy a '57 as it is the year of my birth.
Since looking, I find most that are of a standard I require (considering my lack of mechanical knowledge to put things right) are out of my price range. (Trading around $30k).
However '59's of a simile standard appear $10k cheaper. I actually like the thought of a back seat (to treat friends to the intended experience of "Cruising around"), and '59 is my wife's year of birth!! From what I can gather an awful lot more were produced (being the 2nd model taking on board suggestions form the original launch), but there appears fewer of them "for Sale" and yet they do appear cheaper as stated.
Peoples thoughts and advice please? (I live in the UK, and advice on shipping equally received).
Thanks
Philip
 
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Ward 57

Well-Known Member
It's going to be a lifestyle choice. The '57 was designed as a 'Luxury sport car' that returning soldiers liked after coming back from Europe at the time and seeing sports cars that Detroit wasn't producing. It was a way to convince the wife a two seater would be fun and she would enjoy it also as apposed to the finicky European imports. Then they started having kids. The 4 seaters way outsold the baby birds so there are more of them and hence the lower price. Whichever you choose it will be an adventure.
 

Tater Salad

Well-Known Member
Buy what you want or what turns your wheels. I drive a 31 Chevrolet coach sitting on a mustang II. My 55t bird is no comparison. I wanted them both to be drivers. But for whatever reason, I can't do that with the t bird until it's perfect. I guess my point is, doo what feels good to you! And you can't compare any big birds to little birds (55-57)
 

Cuul59

Active Member
As you can see in my pictures attached, I have a 57 and a 59. 57’s are very classic and cool. There are a lot of parts available for them as well...which is a huge plus. 59’s are to the squarebirds (58-60) what the 57 is to the little birds (55-57). Of course just my humble opinion. The downside to the 59’s are fewer for sale as you have seen and parts are not as plentiful. I have to say that diving my ‘59 gets a lot more looks and thumbs up than my ‘57. Guess they are just that much rarer. If you have more questions, please feel free to reach out.
E0542802-0539-4420-94F3-F7646F3F4316.jpeg 9C4B912F-C9F9-4B95-BA9D-1EC340E871A1.jpeg
 
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My experience is my 57 was fun but drove more like a truck and longer distance was tireing plus no room for anything. I have a 59 convertable, when it was drivable it was alot smoother and having the back seat is very nice. My 66 is also a very nice driving car and I appreciate the looks of the 66. the most. Parts dont seem to be a problem for any of them. Cheers
 
It's going to be a lifestyle choice. The '57 was designed as a 'Luxury sport car' that returning soldiers liked after coming back from Europe at the time and seeing sports cars that Detroit wasn't producing. It was a way to convince the wife a two seater would be fun and she would enjoy it also as apposed to the finicky European imports. Then they started having kids. The 4 seaters way outsold the baby birds so there are more of them and hence the lower price. Whichever you choose it will be an adventure.
Thank you Mark... that all makes sense. I'm slowly learning the anomalies in this market. My 21yr old son just got a '65 Mustang (over 600,000 made and sold for $2.5k) now make $20k - $30k. My 23yr old acquired a '82 Collectors edition Corvette (around 2k of these made, sold for over $20k) but can be bought for the same price!! .... As someone has posted it is Personal taste that appears to determine this market...
 
As you can see in my pictures attached, I have a 57 and a 59. 57’s are very classic and cool. There are a lot of parts available for them as well...which is a huge plus. 59’s are to the squarebirds (58-60) what the 57 is to the little birds (55-57). Of course just my humble opinion. The downside to the 59’s are fewer for sale as you have seen and parts are not as plentiful. I have to say that diving my ‘59 gets a lot more looks and thumbs up than my ‘57. Guess they are just that much rarer. If you have more questions, please feel free to reach out.
View attachment 16271 View attachment 16272
I get the "head turns" for the '59 looking at these pictures. My wife loves that colour!!
Thank to Cuul59 (I think the clue is in your name !)
 
Buy what you want or what turns your wheels. I drive a 31 Chevrolet coach sitting on a mustang II. My 55t bird is no comparison. I wanted them both to be drivers. But for whatever reason, I can't do that with the t bird until it's perfect. I guess my point is, doo what feels good to you! And you can't compare any big birds to little birds (55-57)
Thank you Tater.... as you say it must be what suits the individual, not what the enthusiasts rave about.
 

57tbird57

Well-Known Member
I am "new" to this T'bird world and wanted to buy a '57 as it is the year of my birth.
Since looking, I find most that are of a standard I require (considering my lack of mechanical knowledge to put things right) are out of my price range. (Trading around $30k).
However '59's of a simile standard appear $10k cheaper. I actually like the thought of a back seat (to treat friends to the intended experience of "Cruising around"), and '59 is my wife's year of birth!! From what I can gather an awful lot more were produced (being the 2nd model taking on board suggestions form the original launch), but there appears fewer of them "for Sale" and yet they do appear cheaper as stated.
Peoples thoughts and advice please? (I live in the UK, and advice on shipping equally received).
Thanks
Philip
If you are patient and really want a 57, there are some very good deals to be had. Just because they are asking 35 to 40k does not mean they wont settle for a lot less. It is a buyers market right now with money being right now due to pandemic. Good luck on whatever route you choose. Be sure to look it over good in person as well. They almost always look better in pictures than they do in person
 
If you are patient and really want a 57, there are some very good deals to be had. Just because they are asking 35 to 40k does not mean they wont settle for a lot less. It is a buyers market right now with money being right now due to pandemic. Good luck on whatever route you choose. Be sure to look it over good in person as well. They almost always look better in pictures than they do in person
Certainly have found that the pictures can give a false impression.... really need high resolution to look at the parts of the picture that the poster may have captured unintentionally.
 

57tbird57

Well-Known Member
Certainly have found that the pictures can give a false impression.... really need high resolution to look at the parts of the picture that the poster may have captured unintentionally.
I just recently purchased another 57. I went and looked at a couple of them that were over a hundred miles away that looked really nice in the pics, but when you got up close and personal, there were alot of flaws that didnt show up. Looking down the sides of one of them you could see all the waves in the body work that would have required several thousand bucks to make it right. The other one was nearly as bad, plus half of the options didnt work.
 
I had a 1960 light blue T-Bird once. It had some electrical problems, but was a classy car. But remember if you live in a large city you will have little problem
finding a mechanic to work on it. The smaller the town the harder it is to find a good qualified mechanic and not just a parts changer. There is, per chance, a
1959 T-Bird for sale in Longview, Texas. It is yellow with a white top and sort of a beige interior. Appears to be good paint and nice interior - no A/C though.
I currently have a 1957 T-Bird, and getting it worked on locally is a pain. One shop will, but only in between other newer jobs, as they have time and it can take months. My 1957 has spent most of my two years of ownership in a mechanics garage - waiting for attention. The principal difference in these two cars 1957 nvs 1959 is the availability of parts. You can get almost anything new or rebuilt for a 1955-57 - not so much for the 1959-up. My favorite body style is the 1961 or 1963. I had both. I paid a local body shop in 2009, $7,500 to repair and paint it and they totally destroyed it. I currently have a black 1978 T-Bird, very reliable, rides great, have taken it to crusin' the coast three times, and it is new enough for local mechanics to work on it.
 
I had a 1960 light blue T-Bird once. It had some electrical problems, but was a classy car. But remember if you live in a large city you will have little problem
finding a mechanic to work on it. The smaller the town the harder it is to find a good qualified mechanic and not just a parts changer. There is, per chance, a
1959 T-Bird for sale in Longview, Texas. It is yellow with a white top and sort of a beige interior. Appears to be good paint and nice interior - no A/C though.
I currently have a 1957 T-Bird, and getting it worked on locally is a pain. One shop will, but only in between other newer jobs, as they have time and it can take months. My 1957 has spent most of my two years of ownership in a mechanics garage - waiting for attention. The principal difference in these two cars 1957 nvs 1959 is the availability of parts. You can get almost anything new or rebuilt for a 1955-57 - not so much for the 1959-up. My favorite body style is the 1961 or 1963. I had both. I paid a local body shop in 2009, $7,500 to repair and paint it and they totally destroyed it. I currently have a black 1978 T-Bird, very reliable, rides great, have taken it to crusin' the coast three times, and it is new enough for local mechanics to work on it.
Gosh John, Thank you for all that information...a bit frightening I must admit....I have no mechanical knowledge at all (but do intend to spend my retirement in learning!). I was dead set on having a '57, but I think the '59 with the back seats will now be my choice. I have an eye on one in El Passo. Just trying to get some decent pictures of it. still can't get my head around the difference in price, but you have confirmed others suggestions of lack of parts.
Your help is much appreciated.... you don't live close to El Passo by any chance??
Thanks Philip
 
I had a 1960 light blue T-Bird once. It had some electrical problems, but was a classy car. But remember if you live in a large city you will have little problem
finding a mechanic to work on it. The smaller the town the harder it is to find a good qualified mechanic and not just a parts changer. There is, per chance, a
1959 T-Bird for sale in Longview, Texas. It is yellow with a white top and sort of a beige interior. Appears to be good paint and nice interior - no A/C though.
I currently have a 1957 T-Bird, and getting it worked on locally is a pain. One shop will, but only in between other newer jobs, as they have time and it can take months. My 1957 has spent most of my two years of ownership in a mechanics garage - waiting for attention. The principal difference in these two cars 1957 nvs 1959 is the availability of parts. You can get almost anything new or rebuilt for a 1955-57 - not so much for the 1959-up. My favorite body style is the 1961 or 1963. I had both. I paid a local body shop in 2009, $7,500 to repair and paint it and they totally destroyed it. I currently have a black 1978 T-Bird, very reliable, rides great, have taken it to crusin' the coast three times, and it is new enough for local mechanics to work on it.
Do you have a link and price for the '59 in Longview
 
Gosh John, Thank you for all that information...a bit frightening I must admit....I have no mechanical knowledge at all (but do intend to spend my retirement in learning!). I was dead set on having a '57, but I think the '59 with the back seats will now be my choice. I have an eye on one in El Passo. Just trying to get some decent pictures of it. still can't get my head around the difference in price, but you have confirmed others suggestions of lack of parts.
Your help is much appreciated.... you don't live close to El Passo by any chance??
Thanks Philip
Nope! I live about 800 miles away in Deep East Texas. But here is another thought. See what size wheel 14 or 15 inch that is on the year that you are looking for.
Virtually no one carries much for the 14 inch tires with any selection any more, especially white walls.. You can get 14 inch tires via Coker, Hancook, Universal, etc.
But if you ever plan to upgrade to front disk, it is virtually impossible, and expensive. Just had disk put on my 57 last year. Thought that I found a disk kit that they said would work, but no so. Guess that it also depends on the expertise of you mechanic. I had to go 15's in order for the disk to work, and used 55-56
hubcabs - looks good. May go to Kelsey-Hays wire wheels later. I had regular drum brakes on my 1963 T-Bird and drove it for more than ten years and they worked just fine. I have also heard talk that a 14 inch disk wheel kit taken off a early model Ford Granada will possibly work - enjoy your ride!.
 
I have found this '59 for sale in Texas ($22k) it appears in excellent shape. No rust etc BUT, Apparently the front of the car was a coupe, and it was adjoined to the back half of a soft top. It's been inspected by a reputable person who says it is basically undetectable. However if I buy this to be brought into the UK the VIN will not comply with the view of the vehicle. What's peoples thoughts?
Cheers Philip
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