Feb. 22, 2011 at 3:40pmStrictly Continental

1942 Lincoln The first Continental was a customized Lincoln Zephyr built in 1939, at the request of Ford Motor Company President Edsel Ford.  The car was built to be for his use at his vacation home in Palm Beach Florida. As the story goes, upon returning from a trip to Europe, Edsel went to the Ford Company’s head designer, Bob Gregorie and asked him to build a “strictly continental” car for his personal use.

Within weeks of receiving the car, Edsel wired Gregorie explaining that he could have"filled his pockets with pre-orders" from his wealthy friends who saw the car.     1942 Lincoln 2
The first series-produced Continentals began construction in December 1939.  The design changed in 1942 at which time a larger 306cid V12 engine with 130hp (which is 10hp more than earlier models) was installed and the grille and front trim were re-designed for a sleeker appearance. The first few cars rushed into production were equipped with Ford’s new “Liquamatic” automatic transmission which proved initially problematic, and all were recalled and outfitted with manual three-speed transmission.

Due to America’s entry into World War II, only 136 Cabriolets and 200 club Coupes were produced in 1942 before civilian automobile production ended.

The 1939-1948 Continental is recognized as a "Full Classic" by the Classic Car Club of America, one of the last-built cars to be so recognized.

This Bristol Blue1942 Lincoln Continental Coupe was recently donated to America’s Car Museum by Mr. Richard Culp of  Bainbridge Island, Washington.

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