Johnny Taylor's 1958 Ford

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Johnny's Ford at an indoor car show.
The Johnny Taylor Ford as it sat when it was advertised for sale at the Newport Beach Auto Gallery in 2013. Photo courtesy of John Gilbert.
Photo courtesy of John Gilbert.
Photo courtesy of John Gilbert.
Photo courtesy of John Gilbert.
Photo courtesy of John Gilbert.

1958 Ford restyled by Art Lehner of Art Chrome Body Shop for Johnny Taylor. Johnny's real name was actually Johnnie Taylor, but after the misspelling in Rod & Custom May 1963 the car has always been called Johnny Taylor's 1958 Ford. Art set the headlights of the car back 1 inch in the 4 inch extended fenders. The grille opening was also modified and fit with a 1959 Imperial grille. The rear fenders were finned 10 inches, the rear pan was rolled and the car fit with eight 1959 Cadillac taillights. Round rod was frenched to body for the taillight housing. The side trim on the car was fit with 800 hand made chrome buttons. The roof was restyled featuring two functional scoops. Art Lehner's son Bud Lehner painted the car once the bodywork was complete. The roof was painted in Lavender metalflake, and the rest of the car in a purple metalflake.

Inside the car featured an interior by Loveland Custom Upholstery. Up front the car featured Thunderbird bucket seats upholstered in white pearl Naugahyde and purple tufts.

The stock engine was swapped for a 390 CID Ford engine featuring an Edelbrock triple carb set-up.

There is some conflict about who did what on Johnny's car, but according to its current owner Chris Yates, Larry Watson of Watson's House of Style painted the car. Chris has had this confirmed by Larry himself.

The car is still around, and is currently owned by Chris Yates og Hawthorne, California. Chris who has restored the car, has owned it since 1983. Joe Perez redid the interior when the car was restored.

June 27, 2010 the Johnny Taylor Ford was sold at the Barret-Jackson Orange County 2010 Auction. Sale price included buyers commission was $23,100. [1]

In 2013 the Johnny Taylor Ford was advertised for sale at the Newport Beach Auto Gallery.[2]

Jimmy and Sharold Souza bought the old custom in 2013.[3]

Magazine Features

Rod & Custom May 1963
Rod & Custom August 1990


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