With over 1000 cars on display, the 34th Annual Fabulous Fords Forever show in Orange County, California is one of the largest one-day car shows in the nation. This year, to increase its capacity and spectator parking, the free event moved to Angel Stadium in Anaheim and the weather was SoCal perfect.
2019 Fabulous Fords Forever Photo Gallery
You can’t have a Ford car show without a bunch of 1950s Thunderbirds, and you don’t get any more ’50s than Robert Schrag’s pastel blue 1955, which he drove over from Manhattan Beach.
Hank Williams bought his 1965 Shelby Cobra 289 brand new, the original sticker price was $6,376.27. Williams still owns CSX 2227, which is unrestored and completely original. Today the car is worth about one million dollars.
With their wild paint jobs and shag carpet, we all remember custom vans from the 1970s. Well they’re gaining popularity once again and there were many cool vans on display. This beautiful orange 1972 Ford E100 Econoline belongs to Conrado Perez of Moreno Valley, CA.
Marilyn Wiersma of Garden Grove, CA owns this perfect 1966 Shelby Mustang GT350. Shelby built about 2378 of this model in 1966 but only 305 were painted Ivy Green like Wiersma’s Mustang. It also wears the optional aluminum 10-spoke wheels.
One of the more radical new 4x4 Ford F150 pickups on display belonged to Haro Derkrikorian of Rancho Cucamonga, CA. His truck was decked out with a lifted suspension, body modifications, auxiliary lighting, and massive 22-inch wheels and tires.
Jerry and Christie Spear brought out their beautiful 1954 Ford F-100 pickup. Jerry’s great grandfather was the original owner of the truck. He bought it in April of 1954 in Stockton, Missouri for $1,891.81, which includes an extra $65.53 for the optional heater and three percent sales tax.
There were plenty of Mustang Bullitt editions on display, all paying tribute to Steve McQueen’s 1968 movie, which features the greatest car chase ever filmed. This 2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt is parked next to a very authentic and beautifully restored replica of McQueen’s movie car owned by Jeremy and Marisa Scott of San Pedro, CA.
First generation Ford Broncos, built from 1966 to 1977, have become extremely popular over the last 10 years. These trucks are one of the hottest segments of the collector car hobby and there were dozens displayed this year from restored stockers to radical customs. One of our favorites belonged to Marie Dolson from nearby Fullerton, CA who has owned the 1972 Bronco since 1978.
This massive car show even brings out many Ford models from Europe and Australia that weren’t sold in the United States. Our favorite was this 1992 Ford Escort RS Cosworth, which Ford built to homologate the model for European rally racing. This is just one of just 2500 “big turbo” models ever produced.
Of course there were more modern Mustangs on display than we could count, ranging from factory fresh examples to extreme customs. One that caught our eye was Ed Mendez’s orange muscle car with its tasteful body modifications, lowered stance, Borla exhaust and deep dish wheels.
With its wild paint scheme and massive chrome supercharger, Brian and Nicki Davis’ Pro Street 1969 Mustang fastback drew a crowd all day. The Mustang, which the couple calls Optical Illusion, has been featured in magazines and it’s a regular at Southern California car shows.
If you were young and cool in 1930, this is one of the cars you would have lusted after, Tony and Kathy Catroppa’s 1930 Ford Model A Deluxe Coupe with a Rumble Seat. The car would have cost $525 when new and the couple is only the Ford’s third owner. The restoration is perfect and as close to original as possible.
A California doctor originally owned this 1949 Mercury Eight Station Wagon for over 50 years. He bought it new for just $2,643. Now the Woody is owned by Scott and Chris Couchman and features a rebuilt Flathead V8. Incredibly, the car has been repainted only once and its leather interior and dash are original.
In the 1980s and 1990s many of America’s police drove 5.0-liter Mustangs so they could catch the bad guys. These cars were equipped with a Special Service Package, and have become very collectible. This 1992 Mustang was used by the police department of Inglewood, CA, however, now it belongs to Phil Colonnelli of Escondido, CA who displays the Mustang with its police radio and dashboard mounted shotgun.
Fernando Meraz of Riverside, CA owns five first-generation Ford SVT Lightning pickups and he brought out four, including this clean red 1994 model. Powered by 351 V8 engines, Ford built these muscle trucks from 1993-1995, and they’re gaining popularity once again. Just 16,839 were built. Lady Gaga is often seen driving hers around Los Angeles.
Galpin Ford is one of America’s largest Ford dealers and its Galpin Auto Sports has been modifying cars and trucks since the 1960s. Its display was massive and included a new Ford GT supercar, many modified Mustangs, a tricked out 2019 Ford Ranger pickup and sitting high above the crowd, a 1970 Shelby GT500 with the 428 Cobra Jet V8.
Another Ford GT was drawing crowds to Ford’s huge display, which also featured a new 2019 Mustang and many of the automakers SUVs and pickups. Inside the tent was a new Explorer, an Ecosport and several trucks including an F-150 and Ford’s new midsize Ranger pickup.
Ford also brought out a 2020 Shelby Mustang GT500, which was recently revealed at the Detroit Auto Show in January. When it goes on sale later this year, the supercharged Mustang will have over 700 hp, making it the most powerful Mustang of all time.
A Ford Ride and Drive was also part of the program and it was popular. Fans could drive several new models including a 2019 Explorer, an F-150, a Ranger and a Mustang. Also popular was the drifting exhibition put on by professional drifters in their Mustangs. It was easy to find, we just followed the clouds of tire smoke.
In 1969 and 1970, Ford built about 1,357 Boss 429 Mustangs with an engine so big it couldn’t even be installed on the assembly line. This rare 1969 model was originally purchased in Alabama by Captain Hunter Jones, an Army Helicopter pilot. It was his daily driver and weekend drag racer and has been driven just 64,000 miles.
Charles Tayler of Villa Park, CA bought this 1968 Shelby GT500 KR 4-speed convertible in 2010 and spent two years restoring the classic muscle car. Shelby only built 518 KR convertibles and 318 with the 4-speed transmission. Very few were Highland Green.
One of our favorite hot rods on display belonged to Richard Smith of Anaheim, CA. His fenderless 1932 Ford is an example of the quintessential hot rod, with its dropped stance, staggered wheels and tires, and chopped windshield. Ford introduced the Flathead V8 in 1932 and this model has been the hot rod to have every since.
Early Saleen Mustangs from the 1980s are becoming very collectable. This 1989 model is in the Saleen Owner’s Registry and belongs to Alejandro Negrete of Gustine, CA. It’s one of just 17 built that year painted Cabernet Red with a Grey interior, silver graphics and an optional 3.55 rear axle gear.
Steve Saleen is still modifying Mustangs and his latest 2019 model was displayed in his expansive display. Saleen, who was on hand signing autographs, says his supercharged 302 Black Label model packs 800 hp. It costs $78,945.
Also on display was Saleen’s latest supercar, the S1. The mid-engine two seater debuted at the 2017 LA Auto Show and features an aluminum chassis, carbon fiber body, 20-inch wheels and a turbocharged 2.5-liter four-cylinder making 450 hp. It weighs just 2,685 lbs. Saleen claims 0-60 mph in 3.5-seconds.
Custom SUVs were everywhere at this years show, but none were larger or more wild than Eddie Dominguez’s Excursion. The V10-powered behemoth drove in from from Long Beach, CA and features metal flake paint, a new F-250 grille treatment and massive 30-inch wheels and tires.
This is a very rare and special car. In 1969 Mercury built just 218 Cyclone Spoiler II Dan Gurney Specials, all were white with blue graphics and a blue roof. The car was named for one of America’s greatest drivers who won in many forms of racing including NASCAR, Indycar and Formula 1. This one was even displayed with a Dan Gurney For President bumper sticker, which was a campaign started by Car and Driver magazine in 1964.
Not every car at this show is a big buck restoration or custom. We found Richard Gutierrez and his young daughter eating chicken fingers and fries off the trunk of his unrestored and well worn 1965 Mustang fastback. He has owned the car for two years and he’s slowly fixing it up. Most of that red paint is original.
One of our favorite Ford Raptor pickups at the show was this brand new modified 2019 model. This white Raptor is lifted and rides on 20-inch wheels and 37-inch tires. It also has a blacked out grille, Prerunner-style bumpers, and its twin-turbocharged engine has been tweaked for an extra 70 hp.
One of the coolest Mercury muscle cars of all time is the 1969 Cougar Eliminator. Derek Humphrey is the car's third owner, and he has owned it since 1995. The car’s original owner purchased the 351-powered machine in Atlanta, Georgia, paying just $3,094.82. He owned it until 1985. It is one of just 2,250 built in 1969 with the Eliminator package. Only 715 were yellow.
This was high style in 1968, the Mercury Parklane Convertible with the rare factory Colony Park wood paneling. Approximately 200 were built with this option and only 23 are known to exist. This restored example, which is powered by a 390 cubic inch engine, was purchased new in Inglewood, CA for $4,996.10. Today, it is owned by Mitch Braiman.
Mid-engine mania. The Superformance GT40 in the Gulf Racing colors is owned by David Miyasako of Buena Park, CA. It’s powered by a fuel injected Roush small-block 427 making 460 hp. The yellow 1971 DeTomaso Pantera isn’t stock either. Its 351 V8 has been upgraded with an Isky cam, Keith Black pistons, an aluminum intake and a big Holley carburetor. The owner says it makes 432 hp. The car weighs just 2900 lbs.
Even Eleanor showed up. Although the remake of Gone in 60 Seconds with Nicolas Cage hit theaters nearly 20 years ago, the movie’s star car, a modified 1967 Shelby GT500 Mustang, remains as popular as ever. This is the car many credit with launching the restomod era and the best Eleanor replicas still sell for well over $100,000. This one looked pretty darn good.