Today’s car is a 1951 Ford Victoria but it is a 1950 Ford Fraud owned by Tony Miller. Yes, it is a 1951 Ford made to look like a 1950 Ford with a bunch of tastefully subtle custom changes. I photographed this car at the 41st Annual Outriders Picnic, that is invitation only event that I was lucky enough to score a ticket, it is one of the most popular car events in Southern California. The car is finished in Cadillac Polo Green with a Butterscotch leather Interior. It is powered by a 345 hp, 350 cu in, Chevrolet ZZ3 V8 crate engine with aluminum heads and intake manifold with a Rochester 4bbl carburetor. It is mated to a 700R4 4-speed with overdrive automatic transmission with 3.31:1 rear axle. Slowing this beauty down are disc brakes in the front and drums in the rear. It has independent front suspension using a Camaro front clip that has been stepped down 4″. The rear suspension is solid axle with longitudinal semi-elliptical leaf springs that have been lowered 5″.
Let me give you a little of Tony’s notable automotive background. Tony studied at ArtCenter College of Design with a Transportation Major, the Bavarian Motor Works (BMW) and studied Automobile Body Design and was the Vice President of Design for Hot Wheels. That leads me to the question. Why did Tony want to make his 51 look like a 50? Tony did not like the glitziness of the 51. He liked the simplicity of the 1950 as his starting point for this project. Some of the obvious changes are the 1950 hood, grill, bumpers, trim, dash board, trunk handle and taillights. A couple of not 1950 Ford changes are the 1949 hood ornament and the 1952 headlight trim rings that give the car that frenched in headlight look. He had to have 50 holes filled when he removed all of the 51 trim. The biggest changes are to the top, a 2 1/2 inch chop, the rear window went from a 3 piece wrap around window to a single window adopted from a 1952 Ford station wagon rear window. The rear quarter windows were reshaped changing the rear edge to a 45 degree slope and lengthened them to the rear of the car by 3 inches. The front fender wheel wells have been raised 2″ that adds to the perfect stance. The 51 truck lid was left as is since it was cleaner with the already hidden hinges. The catch is that you could not get a 2 door hardtop (Victoria) in 1950! I think that this cars subtle changes and color choices make it one of the nicest Shoe Boxes that I have ever seen.
The total 0f 1951 fords produced were 1,013,391 units with 110,286 of them being Victoria’s. The MSRP was $1,925.00. It has a published top speed of 83 mph with a 0-60 mph time of 16.9 seconds. What a beautifully executed custom car that makes you look twice to see the subtle looking changes that keep you looking to see if you missed anything. This eye catching custom is a great car to take to car shows, Cars and Coffee events or just cruising around town. Thanks for riding a long. Frank