Drop Down MenusCSS Drop Down MenuPure CSS Dropdown Menu

Saturday, June 13, 2020

The First Gullwing of Ford: Unveiling the Legacy of the Cougar 406

Hidden Gems - In the realm of automotive history, the iconic gullwing door-type often conjures images of the legendary Mercedes-Benz 300 SL from the 1950s to 1960s. Yet, hidden in the annals of American automobile innovation lies a lesser-known gem – the Ford Cougar 406. This concept car, born in 1962 under Ford's visionary gaze, brought a unique flair to the gullwing door legacy.
The Ford Cougar 406 futuristic concept car was debuting at the 1962 Chicago Auto Show featured top-hinged, electrically operated gull-wing doors. (Picture from: Kustomrama)
Internaly known as the D-523 "Cougar" was an experimental Ford built on a Thunderbird chassis, with fuel injection. The genesis of the Cougar dates back to Ford's experimental endeavors in the mid-1950s. Designed by Dean Jeffries in collaboration with Gil Spear’s studio in 1954 (largely by Samsen), this marvel was conceived as a response to Europe's burgeoning sports car market. The Cougar was more than a mere automobile; it was Ford's audacious foray into the realm of high-performance vehicles.
1962 Ford Cougar 406 designed by Dean Jeffries and uses a new 406 cubic inch V8 engine developed 405 horsepower and 448 pound-feet of torque. (Picture from: Kustomrama)
Interior view of 1962 Ford
Cougar 406 Concept. 
(Picture from:
Debuting at the prestigious 1962 Chicago show, the Ford Cougar 406 commanded attention with its avant-garde design. The pièce de résistance? Those mesmerizing top-hinged gull-wing doors, reminiscent of its German counterpart. Coupled with a robust 406 cubic inch V8 engine churning out 405 horsepower, this concept car promised a thrilling ride like no other.

Beyond its distinctive doors and powerhouse engine, the Cougar boasted other innovative features. Its swing-up headlights, discreetly nestled in the fenders, added a touch of futuristic charm

The Cougar's silver screen debut came in 1963, immortalized in the film adaptation of Frederick Brisson's beloved Broadway hit, 'Under the Yum Yum Tree.' Painted in a resplendent 'Candy Apple Red,' the concept car dazzled alongside Hollywood luminaries like Jack Lemmon and Carol Lynley, etching its legacy in celluloid.
1962 Ford Cougar 406 featured top-hinged, electrically operated gull-wing doors. (Picture from: Kustomrama)
As with many automotive treasures, the Cougar's current whereabouts remain shrouded in mystery. However, tantalizing clues suggest its residence in Detroit, Michigan, under the ownership of Joe Moridian. While sightings have dwindled over the years, the Cougar's allure as a symbol of American ingenuity and automotive artistry endures. 
Notably, this wasn't Ford's first dalliance with the Cougar moniker. A 3/8-scale model had emerged in 1956, and in 1964, the automaker also launched a follow-up concept called the Ford Cougar II Concept. This model was intended as a rival to the Chevy Corvette. Later, Mercury adopted the Cougar moniker for a sleek two-door hardtop pony car built on the Mustang platform in 1967.
The Ford Cougar II Concept is built by Ford Motor Company intended to be an equal rival model of the Chevy Corvette. (Picture from: Motorcities)
The Ford Cougar 406 transcends mere nostalgia; it represents a bygone era of boundless creativity and daring design. Its gullwing doors may echo a bygone era, but their allure lingers, a testament to Ford's indelible mark on automotive history. As enthusiasts and historians alike continue to unravel its story, the Cougar stands as a timeless icon of automotive innovation and imagination. *** [EKA [13062020] | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | CARSTYLING.RU | MYCARQUEST | KUSTOMRAMA | FORUM AACA | DEANGARAGE ]
Note: This blog can be accessed via your smart phone.