Return to porthole authority homepage Diecast, etc...  Classic Ford Thunderbirds
1957 Thunderbird Diecast Models
A-H
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Click on highlighted words or thumbnails to view larger photos.  Am working on installing "thumbnail" photos. Distinctive characteristics for a 1957 T-bird:  Front Fender vents;   tail fins at 45o angle out from body; massive curved bumpers which do NOT include a continental kit or bumper extension; Hardtop may be porthole or non-porthole.
Any deviations from above are customs.
Scale Information

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NOTE: Some models will have the Continental kit added on along with a bumper extension to support kit - this was an after market accessory for the real car- not a stock 57 t-bird item. The proliferation of 57 models with continental kits derives from the time period of the late 70's when the TV show Vega$ aired and the star of the show drove a red 57 with a continental kit.  Listings are in alphabetical order by brand or  manufacturer. Listings cover diecasts, plastic molds, sand casts, etc... - any 3-Dimensional 1957 Thunderbird that rolls or appears to roll whether made to be decorative, as a toy, or for the picky collector.  Model Kits are on a separate page but listed here for your info.
Brand / Country Year Made Photos Name - Model # Scale Description

 
 

AMT / USA

1957 . Promotional 1:25 Hard Plastic; convertible; friction motor; from Ford Dealers ; red with cream & gold interior in box labeled "Free Gift from Ford" ~ see Alan Basile's  Promo Heaven site for more info; there are more colors ~ dusk rose,  willow green, , coral sand, colonial white, thunderbird bronze,  black, starmist blue. for some reason, Inca Gold was not made.
1957 . Remote Control 1:25 Hard Plastic; convertible; powered by batteries linked from hand held controller & cable - see Alan Basil's Promo Heaven site for more info
1957 . 1957 T-bird 1:25 Hard Plastic; convertible; various colors; retail version; see Alan Basil's Promo Heaven site for more info
early 60's . Slot Car 1:25 Hard Plastic; RED; non-porthole hardtop; no interior - flat surface with bust of driver figure; from a kit
1962 . Craftsmen Series J-257 1/25 see model kit list
1962 . 3 in 1 '57 T-bird #T2257-200 1/25 Model kit; plastic; all white pieces;
1966 . Trophy Series #2357-200 1/25 Model Kit; plastic; all white pieces;
1967 Elegant Trophy Series #3207 1/25 Model Kit; 
1968 . C103 1/25 Model Kit
1969 . Here comes The Judge #T235 1/25 Model Kit; plastic; molded in white
1974 . Modern Classics #T392 1/25 Model Kit; plastic; all black pieces
1979 . Vega$ #3105 1/25 Model Kit; plastic; all red pieces - with cont'l kit
AMT-ERTL / USA 1989 . 1957 Ford Thunderbird Hardtop/convertible #6516 1/25 Model Kit; plastic; all tan pieces - with cont'l kit
AMT-ERTL /  1993 Classics 1/25 Model Kit; includes 57 Tbird, 57 Ford hardtop, 62 Ford hardtop
AMT-ERTL / China 2003 Classics - 1957 Ford Thunderbird #31925 1/25 Model Kit; plastic; all light grey pieces; black with red interior photo on top of box lid 
AMT / USA 1979 ' 57 Ford Thunderbird hardtop / convertible #4801 1/16 Model Kit; plastic; all white pieces; blue on box lid
AMT-ERTL / USA 1989 . 57 Ford Thunderbird hardtop / convertible #6721 1/16 Model Kit; plastic; red topless on box lid
AMT-ERTL / USA ? . '57 Ford Thunderbird hardtop / convertible #6721 1/16 Model Kit; plastic; blue with white porthole top on box lid
AMT-ERTL / Mexico 1999 . 57 Ford Thunderbird Model KIT #30064-100 1:16 Model Kit; Plastic ; main parts molded in a light grey w/chrome parts; box top & ends show photo of full-size yellow 57 w/white porthole top; sides show photos of completed teal w/black top model; released August 99; reissue of older mold
American Muscle . . see Ertl . Future releases will be listed under Auto World

 

American Plastic Toys / USA 

1990
Fashion Doll Car #8045 17" Plastic convertible w/ room for 11.5" doll; colors of pink or hot pink;  M.O.M 02/00 - wheels chrome. 
1990
'57 T-bird #8042 17" Plastic convertible w/ room for 11.5" doll; colors of yellow or red-orange
1992 Fashion Doll Fun Set - Rock 'n' Waves #8095 17" Plastic convertible with "aqua jet"  & trailer; Hot pink; yellow wheels ; dark smoke windows
199? Champion Spark Plug Fashion Doll Car 17" Plastic convertible in hot pink with yellow wheels
Aurora 1965 . "57 Bird Rod," Slot Car,  1:48 Plastic; cream; aqua, yellow, tan, blue or red w/black porthole top;  "driver"; slot car chassis; boxed= #1865 or carded.
AutoTech / China 1999 Transformer #11D 1/70 Plastic; Black with Gold Top; opens to reveal "red weapons" - part of transformer called "Little Head"; comes in set with 4 other classic cars that transform to build "Little Head"; Old San Francisco Toy Company 
Auto World
(from Ertl mold, see below) / China
2009 . 1957 Thunderbird  1/18 Gunmetal Gray with red interior; grey porthole hardtop with red liner; GUNMTL license plate; wire wheels; numbered, limited edition of 500
2010 1957 Thunderbird 1/18 Inca Gold with white porthole hardtop; black interior with white seat inserts; white wall tires; wind wings, radio antenna, opening hood and trunk; released in April. Limited to 500.
2015 1957 Thunderbird 1/18 See Ertl (Auto World)  released in January
2016 1957 Ford Thunderbird
Holiday Muscle Edition #3
1/18 White with all red interior, porthole hardtop is red. Detailed chassis; license plate reads "Merry Christmas"; limited to 1002; serial # on chassis; 
2017 . 1957 Thunderbird American Muscle
60th Anniversary edition
1/18  Coral Sand with black removeable hardtop; wire wheels with white wall tires; black seats with white inserts, white sunvisors; antenna; white steering wheel. limited editon of 750.
2017 1957 Thunderbord American Muscle
60th Anniversary edition
1/18 Coral Sand with gray removeable hardtop; wire wheels with white wall tires; black seats with white inserts; white sunvisors; white steering wheel; antenna; limited edtion of 252 
Barbarino - see Wolper 70's/80's? . . . Lite blue with figure head of Barbarino glued to hardtop;  From Welcome Back Kotter TV series
Brooklin / England 1994 - 2005 . BRK 13A 1:43 Convertible; detailed interior; see Brooklin article for specials
2001 . Speed Weeks Set 1:43 blue Battle Bird on trailer pulled by blue 52 Ford wagon
2007-present ROD. 16 - 1957 Ford Thunderbird Convertible 1/43 grey metallic; black interior; see Brooklin page;
Buddy L / Japan 1981 . T-Bird #458G 5" 1981 ©; Red tin  w/ white plastic porthole hardtop & chassis; chrome bumpers & set-in cont'l kit.  This was the first model out.
Buddy L / Macau 1985 . '56 T-Bird #458N 5" Red or Peacock Blue tin w/ white plastic porthole hardtop & chassis; chrome bumpers & set-in cont'l kit. 1980 © on chassis;  This is the 2nd production phase.\ despite chassis date
1989 . Classic T-Bird #458Q 5" Red or Peacock Blue tin w/ white plastic porthole hardtop & chassis; chrome bumpers & set-in cont'l kit. 1980© on chassis; This is the 3rd production phase dispite chassis date.
for CokeCola / China 2001 . 2001 Coke Coca Cola Holiday T Bird Carrier Truck 1:43 Plastic (new mold), Red truck with covered trailer; black 57 with white hardtop & interior with continental kit; Coca Cola logos on cars; with 55 white tbird; licensed product of Coca Cola(DL)
Color Brights / China 2009 See Golden Wheel Diecasting below .  code 2 models
Conquest / England 1980's to present . 1957 Thunderbird 1/43 red w/white porthole top or white w/blue porthole top;or black topless with red interior;  very limited production; very heavy; made in England for the Dutch market -- MOTM-05/00
Corgi 1980 - 1988 . Corgi Jr. Ford Thunderbird 1:64 Convertible with extended rear bumper & cont'l kit; opening hood; various colors
# 56128, #56092;  This mold was used by Hot Wheels in 96 and 97.
1980 - present . Ford Thunderbird 1:43 Convertible or w/plastic soft top; with extended rear bumper & cont'l kit; hood and trunk open. various colors
. . . . . .
Brand / Country Year Made Photos Name - Model # Scale Description
Danbury Mint 2007

Ford Thunderbird 1/24 Dusk Rose; black "convertible" soft top that is removeable; Opening hood & trunk; removeable skirts; opening vents & gas flap; active suspension; steering wheel turns; front wheels turn to righr or left; radio antenna moves up and down; detailed engine; Instructions; retail value $140 (edition is now sold out)
Ertl / USA pre '85 Replica Series #1615  1:63 medium blue
Ertl / Hong Kong 1980 #26 1:63 med. blue w/black interior; non-porthole hardtop with emblem; some have opening hoods; base
pre '85 . American Classics #1741 1:63 medium blue
Ertl / ? pre '85 . Cars of the World #1913 1:63 medium blue
Ertl / China 1989 . Vintage Vehicles 1957 Ford Thunderbird #2082 1:43 blue w/ white porthole top; nicely detailed; box comes w/57 t-bird print. History of t-bird on back of box;base marked #17 in series of Vintage Vehicles from Ertl
1990 . Classic Vehicles #2082 1:43 White w/ white porthole top; as above
1993 . Classic Vehicles 1957 Thunderbird #2802 1:43 Black w/ white porthole  top; as above
Ertl - MTH / China 1997 Rail King Classic Auto Transport #30-7613  1:43 
on 0/0-27 gauge 
tracks
Willow green w/white porthole top - 2 identical cars on flatbed rail car; MY Favorite Color of T-bird!!! Part of series of classic auto transport  flat cars.

 
 

Ertl Co. Inc. / China

1997 . American Muscle Cruisin' Series
Dolly's Drive-In
1:43 White w/white porthole top; in set with '65 black Shelby Cobra and Detailed diner w/5"x7" art print by Bruce Kaiser.
1999 . Tennessee VOLS 1957 
 Thunderbird / #19629
1:43 orange w/ white porthole top; Large white "T" on doors; from  Collegiate Products
2000 . Union Pacific Auto 
 Carrier w/T-Birds
1:43 black w/ black interior; 4 cars on double decker "O" guage railcar ;   special issue from TTOS Southwestern Division
2002 Ford Precision 100 Series - 1957 Thunderbird 1:18 StarMist Blue with 2-tone blue interior; white porthole hardtop; very detailed! inside & out
2002 . Ford Precision 100 Series - 1957 Thunderbird 1:18 Red with white porthole top; all red interior; detailed inside and out. late entry for 2002
2003 . Ford Precision 100 Series - 1957 Thunderbird 1:18 Dusk rose with white top
2005 American Muscle 1957 Ford Thunderbird 1/18 Bronze with white interior; bronze removeable hardtop
Ertl (RC2) / China
now owned by RC2
2007 Matco 1957 Ford Thunderbird MM2705 1/18 Black with black & white interior; black removeable hardtop; 1 of 1200
2007 American Muscle 1957 Ford Thunderbird 1/18 Red with red & white interior; white removeable hardtop; enclosed card
2007 American Muscle 1957 Ford Thunderbird 1/18 Red with black & white interior; Black removeable hardtop - "Chase" vehicle - 1 of 217; enclosed card exactly like above model.  marked on base as a chase car.
Ertl (AutoWorld) / China
now owned by Auto World above
2009 American Muscle Authentics1957 Ford Thunderbird AMM926 1/18 Gunmetal Gray with red interior; grey porthole hardtop with red liner; GUNMTL license plate; wire wheels; numbered, limited edition of 500
2010 American Muscle Authentics1957 Ford Thunderbird 1/18 Inca Gold with white porthole hardtop; black interior with white seat inserts; white wall tires; wind wings, radio antenna, opening hood and trunk; released in April 2010; limited edition of 500.
2015 American Muscle Authentics1957 Ford Thunderbird 1/18 Willow Green with white hardtop; Cumberland Green and willow green interior. Released in January. limited to 1254. dated 12/01/2014 on box.
2016 American Muscle Authentics1957 Ford Thunderbird, Holiday Muscle Edition #3 1/18 White with red interior, Red porthole hardtop.Limited to 1002.
Ertl - MTH / China 2001 . Mel's Operating Drive-In 
Diner #30-9105
1:48 red with white porthole top; whitewall tires; Set includes mechanical Mel's diner with carhops and black 57 Chevy plus lights(LV)
Fairfield Mint / China 2005 . 1957 Ford Thunderbird 1:18 Red with white top, cont'l kit - this is the YatMing model packaged under the Fairfield Mint name.
Fleetwood Toys / Hong Kong 1978 Vega$ - Gyro Power Thunderbird #300-40 6.25" Plastic; Red w/ white porthole top; hole in top for inserting plastic strap to run friction motor; extended bumper w/cont'l kit; blue tint windows
Funrise /  1989 Micro Action Magnifiers #1001 1:84 Red or Yellow in 5-pak
Golden Wheel Diecasting Inc / China 2004 American Classic 1:64 blue with white top; silver-grey chassis; black interior;  see Valvoline T-bird; base marked "Made in China"
2007?/2008? American Cruiser 1:64 Blue with white porthole hardtop, white flame graphics on sides and hood; 8-dot wheels; similar to the Valvoline tbird.  Comes with card with photo of gas station.
 Golden Wheel Diecasting Inc. for Colors Bright / China 2009 Penn State Thunderbird 2009 1:64 White with brown interior; 8-dot wheels; Made for Colors Bright Toys & Collectibles; 2009 on license plate; 1 of 2,000.
Hallmark / China 2016 1957 Ford Thunderbird, Kiddie Car Classics Series 4.25 in.
11cm
Starmist Blue; Christmas Tree Ornament (on the heavy side), Diecast metal, topless, black plain interior, rolls but no pedals, black steering wheel, silver painted bumpers, trim, 57 T'bird hubcaps. blackwall tires.
retails at $19.95
2016 . 1957 Ford Thunderbird, Kiddie Car Classics Series 7 inches Starmist Blue,Christmas diecast metal, topless, black plain interior, rolls, steers, black steering wheel, chrome bumpers, chrome & silver painted trim, 57 T'bird chrome hubcap style;. blackwall tires.  Larger version of the above. Boxed with coaster-like booklet that opens to graphic of car. Limited to 8000. retailed at $49.95.
Hawk Model Co / USA 1965 Slot Racer Body Shell 1:24 Plastic body shell only; clear, tinted red or tinted green, or yellow; convertible style
Henson / China 1992 Muppet Babies & Classic t-birds 3.5" 
9cm
soft plastic;purple, red, blue or yellow w/ removeable Muppet Babies(Jim Henson's) in seat; distributed by Carl Jr's Restaurants in 1992
Models of Month 11/99
Hilco Corp / PA 
Shantau, China
Golden Wheel Diecasting Inc.
2011 Classic Road Racers 1:64 Blue with white porthole hardtop, white flame graphics on sides and hood; 8-dot wheels; Packaged with black Mustang and 6 gumballs;  SAME AS the Golden Wheel Diecast 57 above.  Chassis marked: Made in China; Shantou, China; 5555-3810 Hilco, King of Prussia, PA; gumballs made in Canada
Hot Wheels - see Mattel . . . .  Hot Wheels lists
. . . . . .
 If you don't see your '57 classic t-bird model listed at all, Please contact me with a description including the manufacturer/ country of origin / year made if known / size / general & specific description including color of body and interior and type of top, hub style, etc.

Models are added all the time so come back periodically to see the additions.
 
Lists: 1955 A-H 1955 I-M 1955 N-Z ?? 1956 A-F 1956G-J 1956K-N 1956 O-Z + ?? 1957 A-H 1957 I-R 1957 S-Z ?? Model Kits Hot Wheels
released in:  1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
Articles:
AVON Battle Bird,
Brooklin
Corgi
Hot Wheels
Matchbox
Micro Models
 Racing Champions 
Links:
From the 1950's to Present - my editorial comments on the 57 

When starting to gather information for this page, I realized that most have already been catalogued  in my articles.  Though there are many color variations of the '57 models, there are few manufacturers.  It would be real nice if some manufacturer happened to visit these pages and decide to add the '57 model to their line-up.  I've heard from a number of collectors wishing there was someone who made a diecast '57 Thunderbird in the 1:24 to 1:18th size range.  After all, this was the most popular of the 2-seater Thunderbirds, selling more than 20,000 as compared to 16,000+ for the '55 and 15,000+ for the 56.  It is still the most sought after of the three years (don't take offense now if you love your '55 or '56).  The '56 has received the most attention from model manufacturers (I suspect due to the American Graffitti exposure) and the '55 is close behind with the '57 receiving the least. It is interesting to note that the '55 used to have the smallest # until just the last 10 years when the Thunderbird reached it's 35th & 40th anniversry.

 Breakthrough!! Finally! The year 2000 saw the first diecast 1/18 scale 57 T'bird made. Only problem, the continental kit was added. To make matters worse, the bumper extension for the kit was molded with the body. Then a silly tachometer was added to the steering column. Wouldn't it surprise the manufacturers to learn that the tach was incorporated into the dash along with the rest of the dash instruments - it was NOT an add on! I must admit though, that the model is still nicely done and worthy of anybody's collection. Colors for it are great. Will look forward to seeing more colors if Yat MIng decides to continue producing the model BUT WOULD REALLY LIKE TO SEE THAT CONTINENTAL KIT (AND BUMPER EXTENSION) DISAPPEAR. 

Lets hope the NEXT new model of the 57 gets better treatment. That must by why the Hot Wheels hardtop 57 t-bird is so much more saught after than the convertible (topless) versions that Mattel/Matchbox sells. 

The year 2002 saw just that happen as Ertl released their 1/18 scale model t-bird for the Ford Precision 100 series commemorating the 100th anniversary of Ford in 2003.  In 2003, Mattel Hot Wheels released 2 1/18 scale models of the 57 - drag racing versions - without the cont'l kits, too.

Because I have written my articles on several of the manufacturers of the '57 models and have lists already in place for those models, there will just be links to those pages in the lists.  The few odd manufacturers will be listed as completely as possible.  As usual, if I have left out a model, plmk (please let me know). As has happened to the 55 and 56 lists, the 57 list has been divided into several pages. 

Update: 2005 saw another FIRST for the 1957 model.  YatMing must have someone that reads my pages and saw my request for the 1/24 scale model diecast.  They made it happen! and it appears to be a hit on eBay, sometimes bringing $20.00 or more for one model even though a full set of the 6 colors available can be bought on eBay sometimes at a starting bid of $29.
Update #2:  2007 is the '57s 50th anniversary and Danbury Mint is offering a dusk rose ( pink ) 1/24 scale very well detailed model.  Danbury has already done anniversary models in 1/24 scale for the '55 and the '56.
Update #3:  2011 More editorial content.  Would really like to see Danbury Mint offer the 1/24 scale 1957 in another color.  Red is quite popular with new  buyers of the 57 but the other colors are just as good.  Danbury Mint no longer offers their standard 1956 Thunderbird model, nor the 55 or 57 for that matter, so they are really due to need another. 


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