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Edsel Retractable Hardtop?


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OK gang, I have a picture in my collection of what appears to be a 1958 Edsel Retractable Hardtop. I am well familer with the Ford Retractables from 1957-1959 but was not aware that Edsel had one too. Can anyone validate this for me or do you think this may be a doctored photograph.

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No factory Edsel Retactables. I'd say there were several Edsels converted into retractables over the years, as there was even more Edsel Rancheros made up. I believe they would have started out by using the station wagon body to make the retactable and the Ranchero would more than likely started with a '57 Ford Ranchero. I seen one of these made up retactables years ago.

Rick

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You can see vestigial fins in the photograph, along with 1958 Ford-ish taillight pods. Possibly a factory one-off with Edsel components, based on a 1958 Skyliner?

Edsel, supposed to be Ford's gadget division, maybe something like this would have helped it. Always felt like Edsels got a bad rap. McNamara can't sidestep blame for its failure either. If he hadn't helped destroy Edsel, he'd have surely succeeded in destroying Lincoln.

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  • 13 years later...

There is ONE 1958 Edsel Hardtop convertible that was made in the factory from a 1957 Ford Skyliner. I know the former owner (Car is now in a museum). Here are photos showing the 1958 Edsel station wagon taillights fit into the 1957 Ford taillight space. He told me  it was converted by the factory to appear as a '58 Edsel, but the VIN is still Ford-sourced. 

1958 Edsel Skyliner, dash.jpg

edsel skyliner top up.jpg

1958 Edsel Skyliner front.jpg

1958 Edsel Skyliner side shot.jpg

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  • 5 months later...

I believe there were actually 2 Edsel retractable roof cars.  The other one was called Edsel Corsair Skyliner.  Very blue.  1959, formerly the Calmulet collection.  Now on Long Island, saw it today at Huntington's Hecsher Park, 9/15/2019 at a Studebaker / orphan car show.  Near perfect condition.  Top was halfway as a demonstration.  Factory a/c, 303 HP.  https://rmsothebys.com/en/auctions/AF18/Auburn-Fall/lots/r0079-1959-edsel-corsair-skycruiser-retractable-hardtop/692979.  Makes you forget everything you think you know about Edsels.  See the link.

IMG_0354.JPG

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I believe there were actually 2 Edsel retractable roof cars.  I believe that the other one was called Edsel Corsair Skycruiser, though I've also heard Skyliner.  But on the top (left side of top) it actually says Skycruiser.  Very blue.  1959, formerly the Calmulet collection.  Now on Long Island, saw it today at Huntington's Hecsher Park, 9/15/2019 at a Studebaker / orphan car show.  Near perfect condition.  Top was halfway as a demonstration.  Factory a/c, 303 HP.  https://rmsothebys.com/en/auctions/AF18/Auburn-Fall/lots/r0079-1959-edsel-corsair-skycruiser-retractable-hardtop/692979.  Makes you forget everything you think you know about Edsels.  See the link.  Plus, I never thought I would see an Edsel that I actually liked.  Today I did.  Though I have to say that the comments, form over function, do partially hold up - with the top down the entire massive trunk area is apparently quite full.

IMG_4810.JPG

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It would be possible to build one, as the Edsel Ranger and Pacer shared a body with Fords. You could take a Ford retractible, bolt on the Edsel front clip, and use the Edsel station wagon tail lights and rear fender chrome which were made to fit the Ford rear fenders. Then you would have to swap out the dash board, interior, and possibly engine. This seems to be what the factory did when they created the first car shown.

 

A Corsair or Citation would be much harder to do, as they were based on the Mercury body and there was no Mercury retractable.

 

The Canadian one may be made from a Ford body with Edsel front clip, and Edsel rear fenders.

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I saw what appeared to be a 1958 retractable at the International Edsel Owner's meet in Charlottesville, Virginia I in 1989 but it appeared to have the instrument panel, steering wheel, and rear seat of a 1957 Ford.  The owner claimed it was built at the factory but I leave you to draw your own conclusion.  I know what I think I saw and it was not a 1958 Edsel.  If I'm wrong, I'm wrong but that's the way I see it.  I was also at the 1984 meet and the 1999 meet and saw nothing like that at either one.

1958 Edsel fake Charlottesville VA Aug 5 1989  020.jpg

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As you can see in the photos, it says it's a Skycruiser.  The auction house described it as a one off.  The impression I got was that it was built by Ford to see for itself what it would come out like.  But I don't know.  Hey, I'm not even big on Edsels - I'm a Packard guy.  

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