Merlot Metallic
Tan
302 V8
3 Speed Automatic
  • Frame off restoration
  • Ford 302cid V8
  • C4 automatic transmission
  • Ford 9-inch rear
  • Power brakes
  • Power steering
  • Custom leather interior

When Ford returned to civilian production after WWII, they applied the same logic as most U.S. automakers – facelift a pre-war model. Thankfully, Ford's pre-war offerings had been genuinely good cars and the facelift was more than enough to satisfy an auto market with over four years of pent-up demand. In the 60+ years since their introduction both the collector market and the aftermarket have been good to post-war Fords, making room for the creation of cars like this 1948 Ford Deluxe convertible. The beneficiary of an extensive frame off restoration, this blue oval combines its classic looks with an upgraded chassis, 302 V8 and a tastefully customized interior making this the most refined '48 we've ever offered. If you're looking for the perfect classic to cruise on summer nights, this Ford is the perfect pick.

The exterior retains most of its stock appeal with its sturdy lines and fat fenders fully intact. With the exception of the trunk trim and lock, nothing has been shaved or modified. The panels have been expertly straightened to levels the Ford Motor Company assembly line simply couldn't achieve in 1948. Those freshly massaged body were then sprayed with Merlot Metallic, a color originally mixed for the last generation of Thunderbird. It resembles Pheasant Red but varies just enough that any blue oval aficionado will immediately know something is different. Panel fitment is above average with decent gaps all the way around. The restoration was completed in 2011, so every bit of it still looks fresh.

Since the aim was a classic look, almost all the trim was either restored or replaced. Up front, the sturdy horizontal grille that was the cornerstone of the post-war facelift looks showroom fresh with an equally clean chrome bumper, free of bumper guards, sitting just below it. Above that grille, a pointed hood sits in front a split windshield with chrome wipers just below. All glass on the car is show quality with a light layer of tint on the side and rear windows. Along the sides, thin stainless strips flow the length of the car. The same trim is reflected across the fenders and once again along the rocker. Out back the shaved decklid slopes down between two correct taillights and another show quality chrome bumper that houses the license plate. When the weather gets rough, a new tan convertible top by Kee fits snug and looks brands new.

Open the hood and you'll find a well-dressed 302 cubic inch V8 where the famed flathead once lived. Up top, a chrome open element air cleaner cover conceals an Edelbrock 4-barrel carburetor mounted to an Edelbrock Performer Z89 intake. At the sides, cast iron heads are dressed with chrome valve covers and chrome breathers. From the front of the engine, the distributor sends spark through blue Taylor wires. There are plenty of accessories running off the belt drive system including a polished alternator, air conditioning compressor and power steering pump. Up front, a tall factory style radiator looks at home in front of the 302. The set up breathes through a set of stainless headers that connect to a dual exhaust system featuring Xerator performance mufflers.

Behind that 302 is a C4 three-speed automatic transmission with a Lokar kickdown for effortless downshifts. Power is transferred to the road through a Ford 9-inch rear that spins a set of 15”x7” painted steel wheels wrapped In 215/75 white wall radials. Up front, the original I-beam setup has been scrapped in favor of a Fat Man Fabrications sub frame that anchors the upgraded double A-arm front suspension. Out back, traditional leaf springs keep the rear end planted. Fords of this era offered some of the best brakes on the market and this one continues that tradition with the addition of power discs up front and power brakes in the rear. Power steering has also been added to make the cruising experience even easier. With plenty of power on tap and tons of modern conveniences, few '48s possess this level of road manners.

The 1948 Fords offered comfortable interiors to begin with but this one takes the idea to another level. Up front, a split-back bench seat wrapped in tan leather have been modernized with individual head rests. The back seat resembles a small love seat and offers passengers plenty of room to relax. The door panels are covered in the same tan leather with chrome hand controls for the doors, windows and vent windows adding some contrast. From the driver's seat, gauges by Omega Kustom Instruments housed in a billet surround keep tabs on voltage, fuel, temperature, oil pressure, speed and revs. In the center, a modern JVC head unit sends signal to Pioneer speakers for some in-car entertainment. Look a bit lower and you'll find controls for the Vintage Air air conditioning system which blows cool air through vents tucked under the dashboard. The dash itself is a factory-appearing steel unit painted the same Merlot Metallic as the exterior. In the center, a chrome grille with small ashtrays on either side adds some retro flair. The driver is connected to the road through a Lecarra Mark 10 steering wheel that sits atop a painted steering column with a chrome gear selector. Down low, fresh tan carpet covers the floor and rounds out the cabin. The trunk offers the same level of detail with leather panels and matching tan carpet covering the floor.

Documentation for this car shows what a labor of love the build was. There is a huge stack of receipts, manuals and handwritten notes that cover nearly every piece of this car. Also included are photos that show the car during various phases of the build.

With its strong 302, smooth-shifting C4 and plenty of conveniences like power brakes, and power steering this Ford a great runner. The tasteful leather interior, stereo system and air conditioning make it a car you can take the whole family out in without any complaints. If you're looking for a Ford that hits all the right notes, don't miss out on this one!

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