1963 Ford Galaxie 500 Lightweight
In the middle of 1963, Ford ordered the construction of 200 lightweight Galaxies that were intended for the dragstrip. Ford’s 1963 Galaxie 500 and 500XL Sports Hardtops had already proven themselves, winning the 1963 NASCAR Championship.
With their fastback profile, the 1963 Galaxy sold considerably well. Nearly 5,000 cars were sold with the legendary 427 engine and some of those with the R-Code, dual-quad 425-horsepower version of the 427 V8. Going even further 212 of those were specially prepared for drag racing.
Ford merchandising manager V.P. Motto issued a memo calling for the construction of the 200 cars. This included the new 427 NASCAR engine, an aluminum-case T-10 four speed, fiberglass body panels, aluminum bumpers and a stripped out interior. All but one car were delivered new in Corinthian White with code 95 Red vinyl interiors.
Inside the car had Bostrum lightweight bucket seats, Rubber floor mats, thin cardboard sun visors, floor panels with no armrests. Futhermore several components were deleted like the heater, radio, clock, roof cross support, courtesy lights, dome lights, sound deadening and body seam sealers.
Along with a lightened steel frame, many body panels were replaced by fiberglass. This included the front fenders, inner fenders, hood and trunk lid. Furthermore the front and rear bumpers were made from thin aluminum. Other small alterations included deleted trunk spring torsion bars, hood springs, side mirrors and back-up lights. About the only part beefed up was the heavy duty suspension and brakes.
Chassis & Sales.
This example was sold at Dana Mecum’s 2009 Spring Classic Auction for $105,000 USD. Described as “The 1963½ Galaxie lightweight offered here has a confirmed history as a Tasca Ford car. It saw competition at Pomona Raceway and still bears a 1964 Winternationals decal. Still sporting its oval air cleaner, dual four-barrel carbs and aluminum intake, the 427 is mated to an aluminum T-10 and bellhousing, and surrounded by fiberglass hood, fenders and fender liners.The interior presents the most obvious signs of this car’s intended use. Bostrum lightweight buckets replace the stock bench seat; the heater, radio, clock, armrests and dash pad are all missing, and the shifter sprouts from under a thin rubber mat rather than carpeting.
Especially well documented, this original 1963½ 427 Lightweight Galaxie is exactly as V.P. Motto specified it 46 years ago.
3N66R142720-Sold at RM Auctions Automobiles of Arizona event for $110,000 USD. Described as “This particular Galaxie is one of these very rare Factory Lightweights, fitted with the R-Code, 425-horsepower big block motor. A recent inspection confirmed its authenticity as a correct, authentic Factory Lightweight. The massive 427 cubic inch engine is mated to a Borg-Warner T-10 four-speed transmission with an Ansen NHRA scatter shield and heavy duty nine-inch rear end with 4.11 gears. The car rides on 15X5.5” Kelsey-Hayes steel wheels with an extra heavy duty center spider, dog dish hubcaps and heavy duty brakes, shocks and leaf springs. Special components include the fiberglass trunk and Thunderbolt-style high-riser hood, which has been signed by legendary Ford racing drivers Dick Brannan and Phil Bonner.
|type||Series Production Car|
|block material||Cast Iron|
|fuel feed||Dual Holley four-barrel carburetors|
|displacement||6997 cc / 427 in³|
|power||316.9 kw / 425 bhp|
|specific output||60.74 bhp per litre|
|body / frame||Steel Body w/Fiberglass fenders, hood, trunk over Factory Lightened Frame|
|transmission||Borg-Warner T10 4-Speed Manual|
Auction Sales History
1964 Ford Galaxie 500 Lightweight – did not sell for $175,000. Galaxie Lightweight. 1 of 25 produced with an automatic transmission. Fiberglass tear-drop hood. R-Code 427/425 HP engine. High rise intake manifold. Dual Holley carburetors. Heater and seat belt delete. Fully restored in Wimbledon White with Red interior. Period Firestone Lightning Drag cheater slicks. Listed in the Ford A/Stocker memo. Delivered new to Vels Ford Sales in Torrance, California. Sold new to Allen Besselievre Jr. in San Diego. Documented with the Owner Card and copy of window sticker. Accompanied with Ford memos and telegraphs about the 427 Galaxies. Auction Source: The Daytime Auction in Monterey by Mecum