1956 Ford Crown Victoria Custom - $49,900
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The modifications are not radical-no chopped top, no custom bodywork-but they make this Crown Vic look special.

Custom car builders are like magicians—you can see the final result, but the details involved in the trick aren’t as clear. The best customs hide their details so well that you almost need a standard car next to them to see all the tricks. This 1956 Ford Crown Victoria is one of those awesome cars that’s both instantly recognizable and neatly customized to be totally unique. It’s also traditional, using techniques that have been passed down since the late 1940s, so it looks the way a custom is supposed to look. Not over-done, not ridiculous, not crazy just for the sake of being crazy, but instead an artist’s take on what was already a gorgeous car. With expert workmanship and a lot of neat little things to make it stand out, it’s a car you could spend hours examining and not see it all.

The two-tone candy pearl paint is the first thing that jumps out at you, and we’ll be the first to admit that the fluorescent lights in our studio doesn’t do it justice. The purple areas are deep and vibrant and the white is actually a pearl that has a bit of a purplish tint to it when the light hits it just right, so it looks like a million bucks. The modifications are not radical—no chopped top, no custom bodywork—but they make this Crown Vic look special. The most obvious change is the grille, which is a sleek tubular setup that neatly fits in the original opening and works with the nosed and decked hood to make it look very clean from the front. The spectacular Crown Victoria trim remains and it’s not like anyone could do better than the factory in that regard, and it defines the car’s look from any angle. However, you will also note the window sill trim from a ’55 Mercury Montclair, the twin frenched antennas in the quarter panel, and shaved door handles just to clean it up a bit. Most of the emblems were deleted as well, although the ‘Crown Victoria’ emblems remain on the doors, a nice touch. Out back there’s a continental kit, which should probably be standard equipment on all Crown Vics, as well as white taillight lenses that let the jet-like fins inside the housing become the prominent styling feature. Add in smoothed bumpers with those etched flowers (something everyone who visits the showroom finds remarkable) and you have a Crown Vic that looks familiar but unique.

The interior is a bit more radical, featuring a custom center console and power bucket seats from a late-model. Everything was wrapped in pleated vinyl for a familiar ‘50s vibe, but aside from the dashboard, none of it is 1956 Ford. Factory gauges are joined by a trio of aftermarket dials built into the console, and Vintage Air A/C was added using discreet ducts under the dash. You’ll note a controller for the Air Ride suspension tucked in next to the console, along with switches for the under-car lighting system. There’s also an AM/FM/cassette stereo head unit in the dash, which also has controls for the 10-disc CD changer in the trunk. Appropriately purple accent lighting under the dash continues the theme and it includes beautifully tailored floor mats that match the carpets. Other features include power windows, speakers built into the kick panels and rear package shelf, and a pair of custom bucket seats in back. Workmanship is impressive, with above-average fit and finish, and while the car has been driven and enjoyed, the fact that the hand-made interior is holding up so well is a testament to the quality of the job. Nice work! It’s also a great car for road trips, because the trunk is still giant and includes a spare tire so you don’t have to wrestle with the spare in the continental kit.

The engine appears to be the car’s original 312 cubic inch V8, which has obviously been dressed up for show. Matching purple paint on the block, heads, and intake, plus the accessories, makes the Y-block V8 really pop in the white engine bay. Things like the A/C compressor and hoses were tastefully hidden down low in the engine bay and the power steering system uses a Saginaw pump and a modern rack-and-pinion, so the steering feels quite natural. Customs are not about all-out speed, but the well-dressed V8 moves the Crown Vic without seeming to work very hard and it’s an easy cruiser at today’s highway speeds. You may also spot some custom pinstripes on the radiator shroud, a giant electric fan for warm days and effective A/C, and the remote buttons for the door solenoids so you can easily get into the car. This is the right way to build a custom: fully functional.

The chassis is mostly original Ford components, although it does have upgrades like power disc brakes and the aforementioned steering system. It’s painted black for low maintenance and the floors have a coating of rustproofing compound to help control noise and sound, but it’s not hiding anything—we can see two small patches in the floor but nothing that seems unreasonable for a car like this. The tubes on the inner rockers are purple neon lights that work pretty well with the custom look and you’ll note that even the driveshaft was painted to match the bodywork. There’s a new gas tank out back, air springs to help adjust the rear end’s attitude (perfect if you have passengers in the back seat), and fresh shocks all around that ensure that it rides as well as it looks. 15-inch wheels are fitted with Cadillac hubcaps (another traditional customizer’s trick) and 215/75/15 whitewall radials that handle well.

I don’t know who built this car, but he knew what he was doing. The bodywork is exemplary, the interior is beautifully finished, and it works like a real car. It starts easily, everything works properly including the A/C, and it isn’t so radical that it’s a challenge to drive. A few thoughtful touches will make it stand out just about anywhere it goes and you’ll never see another one quite like it. If you like your customs to be usable while still being gorgeous, we haven’t seen it done better than this Ford. Call today!

Vehicle: 1956 Ford Crown Victoria Custom
Price: $49,900
Stock Number: 116017
Mileage: 55,187
VIN: P6EW181481
Engine: 312 cubic inch V8
Transmission: 3-speed automatic
Gear Ratio: 3
Wheelbase: 116 inches
Wheels: 15-inch steel wheels with hubcaps
Tires: 215/75/15 wide whitewall radial
Exterior Color: Purple and White
Interior Color: Purple and white vinyl
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