This surf green beauty comes from the land of New Zealand. This 1962 Ford Thunderbird is the most magnificent one we have seen in a long time. It’s owned by Alistair Davidson of NZ Rodder and Petrolhead magazines. Davidson was never a big fan of Thunderbirds, he never cared for their stock appearance. However, after seeing a shaved one at a car show he was inspired to build one of his own.
Davidson found a 1962 Thunderbird for sale online. The car looked great in the photos, it had a clean body and a nice interior, which was a good a selling point for him. He sent his friend Steve from Kiwi Shipping to look at the car and take it for a test drive. Steve drove the car and purchased it on Davidson’s behalf.
When Davidson received the car, he parked it in his shed, stripped the chrome off and began grinding away the paint. While grinding, he discovered the body wasn’t in as great of shape as he’d thought; he discovered several large holes and plenty of body filler. To paraphrase Davidson “Originally the plan was to strip the chrome, fill the holes and be cruising. It became an 80 month mission to complete car.”
To help with the body work, Davidson called his buddy Craig from Kiwi Beat. Craig removed all of the annoying filler and patched the big holes while Davidson MIG welded the smaller holes. Kiwi Beat then shaved the exterior of the car, removing the door handles, the mirrors and the trunk lock.
Davidson prepped the car for paint himself and the car was painted by Cascade Autofinish. They applied Lechler epoxy body and Roth Flake on the body and Spies Hecker Subaru green on the roof.
Powering this Bird is a rebuilt Ford 390 with a Holley 600 carburetor. The 390 exhales through twin 2-1/2 inch Flowmaster mufflers. Underneath the bird is an Air Ride suspension that contains Ridetech Shockwaves up front and Air Over Leaf rears out back. The T-Bird rides on four 15-inch steel falcon wheels with ’53 Olds caps spun by Phil Hutty. These wheels are wrapped in Coker American Classic Wide Whites.
For a guy who wasn’t big on Thunderbird’s, Davidson’s has built one of the nicest we have seen. This car is perfect for cruising the mountainous roads of New Zealand. How does it make you feel about old ‘Birds?