One thing that I love about cars that were boring when they were new is that the harder the stylists worked to remove any individuality of the design, the easier it is to spot the general look of the times on the car.
This 1966 midsize Ford is a great example of a car acquiring a kind of stylishness because it avoided it when it was new. Ate Up With Motor did a very interesting history of the Fairlane and how it came to be that Ford successfully brought a new kind of family car to market. And one note that Mr. Severson brings up that also came up in Auto Opium is how Ford’s styling department had little clout in business decisions and tended to play second fiddle to the engineering department, who would call for cheaper to manufacture, dull sheetmetal.
In 1966, Ford gave the Fairlane a new front to bring it in line with the new corporate look. For big Fords, that meant aping several year old Pontiacs. And while that probably looked a little cheap in the mid ’60s, today it looks pretty fresh and the designers seemed only licensed to put in the smallest bit of trim and glitz here and there. You really get a sense of what 1960s design language was, and for that, I think this boring old car is pretty interesting.