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Not a hitchhiker’s guide to the Galaxie either

April 13, 2016


It was made long ago but the Ford Galaxie 500 convertible that I saw on Monday, April 11, wasn’t far, far away; it was conveniently located in the Fairview neighbourhood, parked on the south side of the 1600 block of West Broadway Avenue.

I was riding my bike in the eastbound lane when I saw it so all I had time to do was block traffic briefly so that I could take a few quick snapshots of the backend of the copiously chromed quinquagenarian (50-something).

How many light years old is this thing?


The car is 53-years-old this year. The age can be pinned down exactly from the body styling, specifically the way that the top curve of the rear quarter panels match the curve of the perfectly circular red taillights.

Ford Galaxie 500 tail lights: 1962, 1963 and 1964.

The telltale tail lights of the Ford Galaxie 500, for 1962, 1963 and 1964.

This is a design detail unique to the 1963 Ford Galaxie 500, which was restyled as a sleek, slanted fastback, apparently to help Ford win with it on the the NASCAR racing circuit.

Must use an astronomical amount of gas!

The 1963 Ford Galaxie 500 Sunliner convertible is 5,331 mm in length and has a curb weight of 1,782 kg. It uses a six-cylinder engine—Ford’s second-generation straight-six (“Mileage Maker Six”) and has an average estimated fuel consumption of  17.1 l/100km, or 5.9 km/l.

In comparison, a 2014 Honda Crosstour EX-L V6 SUV, also with a six-cylinder engine and an identical curb weight, averages 10.6 km/l, which is a shade under twice as good as the five-decade-old Galaxie 500. Click the images to enlarge them.

  1. Rodney Clarke permalink

    Less artfully and if you really want to block traffic you can get up close and read the last two numbers of the code molded into the bottom edge of the tail light lens to confirm model year. This works for most American cars from the ’50’s – ’70’s and some from the ’80’s/’90’s, with exceptions – notably the ’65 and ’66 Mustang show “64 on the tail light.

  2. Rodney Clarke permalink

    You’re welcome but I still prefer your method. That Galaxie on the left just winked at me!

    • That one does look frisky but it might just be dust in the air. Happens all the time when I’m looking up at the stars in the Milky Way “Galaxie”.

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