Drop The Top, Burn The Tires

For as iconic as they are, the classic American convertible is a type of car that often gets passed over when it comes to performance-oriented projects. When you think of an old convertible from the ’60s, you likely picture a stylish boulevard cruiser rather than a hardcore street machine, but this drop-top clearly fits into that second category.

It’s a 1964 Ford Falcon Sprint Convertible owned by Carl Foster of Bakersfield that I spotted at the 2016 March Meet last weekend, and it absolutely deserves a closer look.

March-Meet-2016-77 copy

Carl completely rebuilt the Falcon over a 10-year period during the late 1980s and most of the ’90s, and the car appears every bit as fresh today as it did when it was finished.

March-Meet-2016-78 copy

At a glance, the Falcon looks like your typical fixed up cruiser, likely powered by a variation of the Ford small-block V8. But then you notice unusual details, like the Ford Thunderbolt-style hood scoop.

March-Meet-2016-2 copy

As it turns out, the scoop is needed to accommodate the 427 cubic inch high-riser big-block complete with dual snorkels. It’s an engine not unlike the ones that powered so many Ford race cars to victory on drag strips and stock car tracks during the 1960s.

March-Meet-2016-4 copy

And while the automatic trans might be the choice for most vintage convertibles, the 427 is rightfully mated to a 4-speed manual gearbox.

March-Meet-2016-79 copy

What I really like is that despite the exotic engine setup, the bright red interior of the Falcon is extremely original, with only a few subtle aftermarket upgrades.

March-Meet-2016-5 copy

The chrome-finished roll-bar is a necessary addition for example, as are the Simpson racing harnesses mounted over the factory low-back bucket seats.

March-Meet-2016-7 copy

And you won’t find a better wheel choice for this car than a set of American Racing Torq Thrusts, wrapped with meaty Hoosier slicks out back. Also note the rear disc brakes.

March-Meet-2016-80 copy

It’s fast, it’s beautiful, and you can enjoy it all with the wind in your hair. What’s not to like about this very high performance take on the American drop-top?

Mike Garrett
Instagram: japanifornia_media



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This is beyond cool!


Isnt this the same Falcon from the 2012 article?


Falcons need more love than they get. Great car to restomod-light, they look great, and they share many parts with Mustangs so the aftermarket is huge. 

Also, I wanna know more about the Charger behind it.


@Guest http://www.speedhunters.com/2012/03/car-spotlight-427-falcon-droptop/
Same car, practically the same photos, same comments about the 427 engine that used to win in the 60s, 4 speed, Torq wheels and chrome roll-bar... 
At the very least give us something new, what has the owner changed in 4 years? If nothing, maybe give us insight how he's maintaining such a seriously built classic in such good condition over that time period. How about giving us an ET or at the very least give us a ride along to we can get an idea what a topless trip down the strip sounds  / looks like. 

It's a great car and I want to know more than I did 4 years ago is all!


shiftyXTI Damn, Mike. You just got busted.


D1RGE shiftyXTI Oh dear... XD


At least we know he is consistent in his tastes.


What's the red button on the shift stick? Nitrous?


D1RGE shiftyXTI Haha. I do remember mentioning the car although I completely forgot that it was a spotlight. Apologies.


Possibly ignorant question: the whole harness/seat set up seems a bit odd to me (=could be safer?), does the owner switch to buckets for "special occasions"?


Mike Garrett D1RGE shiftyXTI the big difference is the picture quality - now we have them all as wallpapers ;-)


EvolveWRC Probably a line lock. Front brake lock for burn outs


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