Lincolns of Distinction

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Lincoln Continental Mark II

A Classic Luxury Car

The Continental Mark II was penned as a convertible in 1953 by Charley Phaneuf. Hess & Eisenhardt was given the development task of sorting out the radically new "ladder" chassis. H & E built the first convertible prototype from the body of a 53 Lincoln. Hess & Eisenhardt was then given the task of developing the Retractable top that ended up on the 57 Ford Skyliner.

Hess & Eisenhardt labored to perfect a 6-foot folding metal roof. It was a sight to behold. When the Ford Board of Directors first saw it in operation they were speechless.

A Classic Luxury CarWhile the Retractable was being developed, H & E took the body off the frame of a black car with the serial number of C5681126. The frame was strengthened by adding 1/4 plate steel artfully cut to match the contours of the "cowbelly" frame. Heavy steel tubing was added to crossbrace the "A" and "B" pillars. Heavy band steel was installed in a "U" shape both behind the package shelf and spanning the "B" pillar lockposts. The floor was skillfully hammered to clear the additional frame bracing. The body was reinstalled on the reinforced frame. The top was cut away and the door gaps never moved. The rear package shelf was cut away to become the top stowage compartment and ductwork for the air conditioning.


At a later date the distinctive metal boot was fashioned. The boot flips open on torsion bar supports. A top bow assembly from an unidentified donor was fashioned to fit the width of the body of the Mark II. The Mercedes top fittings secure the front and rear of the convertible top. Mercedes fittings were commonly used on H & E funerary and ambulance vehicles.

The quarter windows were removed to make way for the top bows. The front window is cut on an angle to match the distinctive Continental convertible top. The back seat was narrowed but the center folding arm-rest was retained.

A Classic Luxury Car

This stylish piece of rolling sculpture comes with a mystery. There is no record of this car before 1963 yet it is authenticated as built for Ford in December of 1955.

The current owner and others in the Lincoln and Continental Owners Club will remind you that it is not a trueLincoln.

More Photos Here

A Classic Luxury Car


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