Ford Falcon1962 details photos and video

Ford Falcon1962 details photos and video

1962 Ford Falcon was manufactured by the Ford Motor Company as part of the first generation of Falcons produced from 1960 through 1963. The 1962 model proved to be a hallmark year for the Falcon with the introduction of the faux wood-paneled station wagon, the sporty Futura and its frame serving as the foundation for the Ford Mustang prototypes, with the production model arriving in 1964.

The 1962 model was a product of a new direction by Ford. Traditional one-car families were growing in popularity as early baby boomers reached driving age in the early 1960s. Wives wanted their own cars, a recession in 1958 made economical cars desirable and the Volkswagen Beetle was becoming a popular alternative to Detroit's behemoths.

By 1959, smaller cars like the Chevrolet Corvair were prepared to be debuted. The Studebaker Lark was already on sales lots and the Chevrolet Nova was preparing to launch in late 1961. The Falcon, however, was somewhat of a wallflower with its understated styling. The Corvair got a lot of attention due to safety issues. The Lark would die with Studebaker in 1966. That left the sexy Nova and the Plain Jane Falcon.

While the Falcon did not have the sharp styling of the Nova--nor its performance pedigree--it was already in production and immensely popular by the time the Nova arrived in 1962. The 1962 Falcon came as two-door coupe, four-door station sedan, three-door station wagon and a five-door station wagon. Engine options were a 170-cubic-inch straight V-6 or a 260-ci V-8.

The four-door station wagon, dubbed the Squire, debuted in 1962, and was popular with its faux wood-grain trim on the door panels and fenders. The sportier Futura model was Falcon's high-end version for 1962, with plush interior, seatbelts and special chrome touches like spears and new Falcon emblems. Later in 1962, the roofline was changed in a nod to Thunderbird styling.

The Futura was a watershed moment in Ford history because it transformed a somewhat pedestrian model into a modest performance car. Most notable were the floor-mounted four-speed transmission and vinyl roof option. More than 17,000 Futuras were sold in 1962.

The 1962 Falcon ultimately fathered the Ford Mustang. Ford was eager to launch a sporty mid-size car to capture the Baby Boomer market. Design and implementation of the Mustang, however, had to be performed economically. Designers chose the 1962 Falcon frame to test the Mustang prototypes. The 1964 production Mustang ultimately used second generation 1964 Falcon components, including chassis and drivetrain.

By the end of 1962, more than a million Falcons were sold. Perhaps the most under-appreciated model of the year was the lowly paneled delivery wagon based on the Falcon station wagon. Largely ignored by buyers, the delivery wagon was never marketed properly as a commercial vehicle. Only 1,988 models were sold in 1961, and that figure dropped to just 1,588 in 1962 despite receiving the same facelift as the coupes and sedans. The delivery model hung on until it was discontinued in 1965.

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