Unbelievably Original: 1960 Edsel Ranger

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There’s a great story that goes along with this 1960 Edsel Ranger that is currently located in Redding, California. The current owner bought it from the original owner, who was the Parts Department Manager for the Redding Edsel dealer. This survivor is listed for sale here on eBay where bidding has not yet met reserve.

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By 1960, the Edsel had largely gone away from the vertical grille that so polarized the buying public, so the styling was at least a little more mainstream. You can see the original black plate in the front along with the original dealer plate frame. Yes, this car is an original survivor. (that’s three “original” references in two sentences, and I’m not done yet!)

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It seems that Earl (the parts manager) was persnickety about his Edsel. So much so, in fact, that this is the original paint gleaming in these pictures! The car is even said to have rarely spent a night outside. All that chrome and stainless? No dents, dings, tarnish or corrosion! This car is truly a survivor, with only 44,435 careful miles. When Earl sold it to the current seller in April of 2004, it hadn’t even hit the 40,000 mile mark yet.

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Apparently Earl was just as particular about the original upholstery, carpet and dashboard as well. The plastic covers over the seats have been on since new. Yes, those covers just like your grandparents (or their parents) put on their cars’ seats. How about those original Edsel floor mats?

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Unbelievably, that is Earl’s work coat! And of course, he ordered the full maintenance manual; after all, he was the parts manager, right? How many opportunities do you ever have to purchase a car with this kind of history and provenance? Even if it were an ordinary car, which it isn’t, this would be an exceptional opportunity.

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Of course, the engine compartment is just as original as the rest of the car. Looking at the tiny dent in the header tank, I find myself hoping that it happened after Earl’s ownership, as I’m sure he would have agonized over any damage to this car. Are you the one to take over from these two careful owners and carry on Earl’s legacy?

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Comments

  1. Roselandpete

    I always liked the Edsel. I think it was just ahead of its time.

  2. piper62jT

    Wow.. Never seen one before.. almost looks like the 61 full size Ford sedan.. Almost..

    Great shape and very different.. Someone’s going to get a nice show car and should sit on it for a few more years so the value will head upward..

    Great find and a real nice car..

  3. piper62j

    Here’s a nice one..

    • Texas Tea

      Really nice car. Interesting how the body lines were similar to other cars of the same year.

      This is my 1960 Chevrolet Impala and has similar body lines that sweeps from the front to the rear of the car. The jet age of the time period had a big influence with that look. Including the tail lights that resembled jet exhaust.

      • JW454

        Tex,
        Nice looking Impala. I drove a red ’60 like it to high school in the early seventies. The thing is many cars look similar today too but, instead of looking like jets, they seem to resemble jelly beans. You can’t tell one from the other. The nice part is, I really don’t care which is which anyway.

  4. AMCSTEVE

    Super cool

  5. Rex Kahrs Member

    When I see these 50s era cars, I am always astonished at the details. Chrome hubcaps with matching paint, AND a painted black center…How did they make money on such a labor-intensive car? Especially when they were changing models radically each and every year in those days. How did they do it? Discuss.

    • JW454

      Rex,

      According to Edsel.com the base price for a ’60 Ranger 4 door was $2697.00. That’s only $21,700.00 in today’s dollars. So I don’t know how they made any money either.

    • Blyndgesser

      They didn’t make money on them. That was the problem.

      • Johnny Gibson

        Still is a problem

    • Pfk1106

      Competition was different, pacific rim cars weren’t here yet, and only a few European cars; British sports cars, Benz and volvos. Fit wasn’t as good either, so they made up for it with chrome, molding and multi color paint jobs. Thinking back to the street I grew up on, everybody seemed to buy a new car every 3-5 years. It was a cornucopia of cars, with several cars each week on this site reminding of my working class row homes in Baltimore .

  6. Ed P

    Edsel’s are interesting just for the oddity factor. I had a newspaper route in 1963 and one of my customer’s had a ’60 Edsel 4 door. Even by ’63 their car did not look this good. My Dad had a ’60 Ford and I must say, they piled a lot more chrome on the Edsel. The limited production of ’60 Edsels makes this even more interesting.

  7. Kenny

    I didn’t realize Edsels had electric cooling fans with rat’s nest wiring.

    • Wayne

      Kenny, who cares if it’s got a non standard electric fan? Certainly wouldn’t bother me. A bit of the green eyed monster coming out?

      • Kenny

        Obviously you’ve never showed survivor or restored vehicles. Anybody who was thinking about purchasing this car should care about the non-stock cooling system. The car is not original, as described in the Ebay listing. The only reason someone would install an electric fan was if there was a problem with the original cooling. What was that problem..and what other problems did it cause? If the seller neglects to disclose the altered cooling system, what else are they neglecting to disclose?

        Like 1
  8. piper62j

    Car manufacturers back in those days were producing AND making money based on the value of the dollar at that time.. If they couldn’t make money, all of the big three would have been out of business..

    I believe there was a time back then (mid 70s maybe) where Ford quality was so bad that sales dropped into the dumper and dealers were closing their doors..Imports were beginning to out-rank domestic cars.

    Here we are in todays dollars, looking back on those times and cherishing these older cars that fell apart, rusted or didn’t last, on average. Worth big bucks today..

    The current dollar is vastly inflated if you compare it as far back as the 1940s. It’s the same dollar, but buys you far less.. We won’t go there though..LOL

    • Ed P

      The quality of American cars was in the dumper in the mid to late 70’s. Between the low quality and poor fuel economy gave the Japanese makers their chance to dominate the American market.

  9. Wayne

    Love it……

  10. Brakeservo

    Those black plates couldn’t have been installed prior to 1963. This means that the original yellow ones are AWOL.

  11. David Frank David Member

    Although the original concept for the Edsel was a seperate division with its own factory, by the time it was produced the Edsel had been reduced to just paint options and special trim and was built with other Ford models on Ford’s production lines. The assembly workers resented the extra time it took to make the trim changes transforming Fords to Edsels so quality was often lacking. The 1960 Ford’s styling was a unique one year look, not really a transition between the 1959 and 1961 Fords. I think the 1960 Ford made for the best looking Edsel. Gone was the horse collar grill.

  12. Ed P

    The 58 Edsel line was just to ambitious. Ford produced a short wheelbase car and a long one. The two different cars bracketed the lower priced Mercury. If Ford had only built the lower priced line, things may have been different. But, hindsight is always 20/20.

  13. Ikey Heyman

    The Edsel was one of the biggest, if not the biggest, debacles in U.S. manufacturing history. In today’s dollars, I think the cost to Ford was well over 2 billion $$. I only found out a few years ago that the 1960 Comet was originally designed to be a “compact” Edsel model.

    • Bill McCoskey

      The Comet came out just after the Edsel line stopped building cars. There are several Comet pieces that began as Edsel parts. The easiest ones to spot are the taillights. Take a close look at the Comet emblem — a stylized letter “C”. Look at the Edsel emblem with a stylized letter “E”. It’s easy to see that FOMOCO simply changed the E to a C by eliminating the center line in the E.

  14. Roselandpete

    The 59/60 Impala was especially labor intensive to make that rear curved wing fit.

  15. Jim Marshall

    We all realize the 60 Edsel is nothing more than a 60 Ford with a different nose and vertical tail lights grafted into a horizontal quarter panel that always looked out of place on the car to me. The overall look of the car outside of the strange tail light application wasn’t that bad but it was to little to late and after a few months production stopped. The rarity alone makes this car collectible. The convertibles bring big money and look nice except again the tail light application.

  16. ric Parrish

    Tex, You hit it with that jelly bean similarity, I have been looking for a a way to describe the Japanese inspired look of modern cars for years. A jelly bean with wheels. And for Jim Marshall, the incredible rarity of the Edsel way overpowers any complaints about the styling.

  17. Ed P

    “A jelly bean with wheels” is nicer than most of the ways I have described modern cars.

  18. Lion

    When I first saw a new 60 Edsel I saw a 59 Pontiac grill and 59 Pontiac tail lights. I thought it was a great looking car but wondered why they copied Pontiac.

  19. Wayne

    Kenny, maybe they didn’t like the noise of the original fan, or the fact that they suck horsepower, even when the engine doesn’t need cooling. I’m sure the original owner didn’t accessorise his car hoping it would meet your approval, but built it because it met his.

  20. alan r leonard

    Kens point is well taken tho..if it’s advertised ORIGIONAL, then that means thats the way it came off the assembly line…..this car is NOT origional……(from a guy that shows ORIGIONAL Edsel’s!!)

    Edsel Al

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