1959 Edsel Wagon

November 19, 1959 – Ford announces the end of Edsel

Too much money, too much hype, and too much of the same old thing would ultimately kill Edsel. Designed to fill the gap between Ford and its luxurious Lincoln line, Edsel debuted to high expectations on September 4, 1957. Despite all the glitz and glam, including an hour long TV special, the car failed to hit its mark. The press and the public were quick to shrug it off, many left gawking at its odd vertical grill.

Above: 1960 Edsel Ranger. By Fletcher6 – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0.
Top: 1959 Edsel Villager. By Greg Gjerdingen from Willmar, USA – 59 Edsel Villager, CC BY 2.0

Sharing numerous cosmetic and mechanical components with other Ford models, Edsels did little to stand out. Aside from their pillarific front end, that is. The 10 years of development and $250 million spent on planning, marketing, manufacturing and so forth did nothing for Ford but cause a financial fiasco. Facing a $350 million ($2.4 billion in 2019 dollars) loss, Ford announced the discontinuation of Edsel on this day in 1959. Interestingly enough, it was three years to the date that Edsel was officially founded. When production ceased at the end of November, 2,846 1960 models had already been built. In total, 118,297 Edsels left the factory between 1957 and 1959. 

Share this post

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email