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Prototypes and Concept Cars



1955 Mercury D528

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(Beldone) Built by Ford Mercury in 1953-55 and used as a rolling laboratory. Prototype Y block motor XY-3, fully cast fiberglass body, first opening rear electric window. The colors on it are original colors as is the interior design. Restored such that the original build quality was not compromised. Used in a number of movies, including as a trick car by Jerry Lewis.

The D-528 was built to test advanced concepts in safety, lighting, air conditioning, and front frame design. The oddly designed hinged rear fender bulges were functional, concealing a spare tire on one side and a gas tank on the other.

Originally fitted with an experimental Y-block V8 with a two barrel carburetor, the two speed automatic – with overdrive – featured a separate frame with coil sprung suspension and four wheel drum brakes. The Beldone was built with a 120-inch wheelbase.

The extraordinary luggage capacity is obvious, and probably would have fit in well in the mid-fifties larger family car lifestyle. The large trunk also fit the large air conditioning evaporators required for the air conditioning system.

The hollow roof was shaped like a “T” that allowed the cold air from the evaporators to flow through the C-pliiars into the roof and exit through perforations in the headliner panels. The car also Featured a Pillarless windshield and reverse-sloping retractable rear window, it would likely have been well received, but the D-528 was an in-house research vehicle that was never seen publicly until its appearances in the Outer Limits television series and the 1964 Jerry Lewis movie The Patsy.


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