Custom 1963 Ford Thunderbird Le Mans Roadster

Here’s an impressive custom, going for what must be a fraction of the build cost. It’s a 1963 Thunderbird for sale here on Craigslist in Thomasville, North Carolina. It’s hard to imagine this extreme interpretation of the period T-Bird Roadster was built for anything less than six figures, but here it’s for sale at $29,500 or best offer.

Everything about the car is impressive, including the photography. The vendor describes it as a “one-off professionally built custom show car, street car, race car” and “a rotisserie build.” More detail would have been useful, but features include a built Ford engine, Corvette disc brakes all around, and British Racing Green paint that is described as “10 out of 10.”

Although the car has hood pins and is set up for racing numbers, it’s hard to imagine it as anything other than a very special boulevard cruiser. The ad mentions the 24 Hours of LeMans, but this beauty looks way too delicate for that brutal assignment.

The car appears immaculate and has only covered 200 miles since completion. “A lot of money and time invested,” it says. Definitely so, and I’m sure there’s a sad story attached. But this isn’t an unfinished project, it’s done, and in turnkey show condition for the right buyer.

Look at that interior, completely custom and gorgeous, with full instrumentation (all new) and a row of switches of uncertain function. That shifter stirs a four-speed manual gearbox that’s undoubtedly well-suited to the Ford V-8. The heavily bolstered buckets will keep you planted on quick cornering.

Other nice features include the racing windscreens seemingly borrowed from a period Austin-Healey, and sturdy rollbars. One assumes the outside exhaust is functional—watch your legs! The inspiration seems to be the 1960s race scene when big American cars like this sometimes shared tracks with Porsches, Triumphs, and MGs. How could it not be a good deal?

“There’s no way to understand or totally appreciate this car without seeing it in person,” the vendor says. And in this case that appears accurate, though the photography is mighty convincing.

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Comments

  1. poseur Member

    first T-Bird i’ve ever seen that stunned me.
    what a gorgeous and exciting creation this is!
    love every bit of it from the color to the interior to the wheels.
    amazing

    37
    • Jon

      had a ’62 coupe; bought in ’75 for $350. it was a cruisin’ fool. why didn’t i keep it?

  2. bobhess Member

    That’s just plain beautiful!

    18
  3. Gsuffa Gsuffa Member

    Great price, but who will find the ad? Shouldn’t the ad have Ford or Thunderbird in the title?

    7
    • Anthony in RI

      Honey, I put it put for sale, but didn’t get any calls….

      15
      • Grandpa Lou

        Nah, someone inherited someones dream car and now wants a quick sale.

        5
  4. Cadmanls Member

    Not too sure why someone built it, I know I have never seen anything like it, but it so cool! A Hotrod T-bird and looks to be done quite nicely.

    7
    • Barry

      Honestly it reminds me of one the alternative options on a Revell model from around that time when I was 11. At Woolworth’s in Gentility where I grew up, I recall losing one of the regularly held model building contests to creations much like this. That said this is so beautiful!

      4
  5. Slightly Askew

    I’d paint it black and while stopped at a light I’d look over at the jaw-dropped Prius driver and growl, “That’s right, I’m Batman!”

    17
  6. That Guy

    That is ridiculously cool. It should sell quickly at that price. I’m not really a restomod guy, but I would totally rock this crazy thing.

    10
  7. Bud

    Never cared for this era of T bird but , this one is cool .

    4
  8. TDM Member

    I swear it’s the prototype for the Batmobile.

    5
    • Gerard Harings

      ….ssssst don’t tel everybody….

  9. Bob_in_TN Member

    I wanted to not like this car, as it is not “my speed” with respect to classic cars. But after I took a look, I think it is cool and well-done. There has to be a ton of money in the effort.

    8
  10. Ralph

    Well thats one thing you can do with a coupe Tbird if no one wants it……

  11. ccrvtt

    I have commented elsewhere that just because you CAN do something doesn’t necessarily mean you SHOULD do something.

    I take that back in this case.

    I don’t know that given the skills, time, and money to do this that I would have done it, but it’s a case where a coherent vision coincided with the resources to accomplish a work of art.

    Underpriced at $29K, but more importantly undervalued at $29K.

    11
  12. JW454

    The rear wheel wells are a mess but, I like the rest of it.

    2
  13. Andrew Franks

    I’m not interested but what a lovely build. Well done.

    3
  14. Morgan Winter

    Maybe just a little bit over the top? Looks like fun, though…

    1
  15. Gaspumpchas

    ccrrvt, I agree. I’m sure the builder has a whole lot more than 29 k in this beauty. Love the imagination. Good luck to the new owner, Would love to run this beauty thru the gears!!

    Cheers
    GPC

    3
  16. 86_Vette_Convertible

    This is one gen of T-Bird’s I like. I figured if they cut it up or screwed it up, so be it. Well I can’t say I like it, but I can’t say I hate it either. I think it would take some time to for a positive or negative response for it. What I see, looks to be well done, so that’s a start.

    1
  17. Snotty

    Beautiful accomplishment! And a manual gearbox also. Would enjoy this very much.

    3
  18. Skippy

    Well…first off, it is a chopped-off hardtop car, not a convertible. And the interior on the ’61-63 t-bird is one of the most beautiful interiors ever and a cardinal sin to tear up. So this was a junker that somebody had fun with. That said, this is an “interesting” retro-styled build. Only 200 miles since the build? So somebody just did this. Wow. I’m sure somebody will buy it.

    4
  19. Morley Brown Member

    What engine???? What size, just anything, Used cars sales men never mention engines or show them, I would think this is the essence of a car like this. The seller is not a car person. I love the car but with no info, I am out. Morley

    2
    • Chasman358 Chasman358 Member

      Most were equipped with a 390 ci – 300 Horsepower engine. Single 4 bbl carburetor. A few had a “High Performance”
      390 – 340 Horsepower engine.
      The valve covers have “Thunderbird” stamped on them and this usually indicates a 390-300

      This is a Beautiful car. The fact that it’s a 4 speed makes it very special IMO.

      1
  20. Mark Epperson

    Gorgeous! Ford should buy this T bird and keep it their museum. Best lookin T bird I have even seen.

    4
  21. lbpa18

    Normally, this year/style of T-bird was uninspiring for me. But with oversized tires and some clips and styling, this is beautiful with very clean lines. Wish the seller had provided some outside pictures, especially from the sides, but its a looker for sure. I’ll be it’ll go for close to the asking price. Im sure it has more than that in it.

    1
  22. The one

    My favorite body style!! Looks like a jet aircraft from the rear..

    3
  23. rod444

    Ive seen about a million show cars but that floating hood mount is pretty unique… I love this thing. The attention to detail is far above average. The wheel flares make it a 12 out of 10 for me.

    2
  24. Andrew S Mace Member

    One has to admire both the vision and the craftsmanship that went into this! That said, any suggestion that this could have any connection to a 24-hour endurance race is…well…like saying the same of a similarly named Pontiac Tempest…. ;)

    1
  25. TimM

    It’s not for me but man is it cool!! The body lines and the color!! Those tail lights look like they should shoot flames out!! Almost a better version of the bat mobile!!! Coolest T-bird I ever did see!!!

    2
  26. Comet

    NICE T-Bird! Someone’s gonna lose a boatload of money at 29K.

    2
  27. The one

    But gain a carload of fun!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2
  28. Rustytech

    It wouldn’t be my first choice of what to do with a 63 T-Bird but kudos to the guy who’s vision and skill created this!

    1
  29. jake

    Awesome build, normally this type of car is not my thing but other than the fake looking wood on the console – love it as it is!!! Wish I had the cash as for the amount of work the price tag is a steal!!!!

    1
  30. Brian Ach

    Looks like a spectacular build and interesting car, and at that price, a sweet buy.

    “Everything about the car is impressive, including the photography.”

    How are photos of a car lit by fluorescents in a garage impressive?

    • Gsuffa Gsuffa Member

      Go see the 72 BMW auction.

  31. Lance Nord

    I love it… I hope it finds a good home.

    1
  32. JeffCh

    Too bad the seller didn’t list it on Bring A Trailer. Probably would have gotten a lot more attention.

    • rod444

      OUCH! Pretty salty, JeffCh.

  33. bobhess Member

    Just caught it but this car has a full competition front to back roll cage in it. Makes you wonder if the cage is part of the build or part of the history.

  34. KEVIN L HARPER

    Interesting build. Thomasville is in the heart of NASCAR country, and with Nascar being a bit in the doldrums there is a lot of talent available around here for doing stuff like this. I don’t think the LeMans connection is as far off as you would think. Holmann Moody built the thunderbolt which did very well at Goodwood in the past few years and there was an early T-bird this year. So while LeMans is a bit of a fantasy it could do very well on a road course and be a lot of fun.
    I do wonder who built it and would not mind going to take a look, but I would feel a bit guilty about wasting their time as I don’t have a place for it.

    1
  35. The one

    Ya gotta be careful of those lake pipes, they get awful hot! May burn a calf or two..

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