1951 Mercury Custom Coupe

status
Unsold
Auction End Date
10/28/2020
Number of Bids
{{ number_of_bids }}
At a Glance
  • Seller
  • reimelmc
  • Location
  • West Chester, PA
  • Vin No.
  • 51SL126943M
  • Mileage
  • 1,860 miles Since Completion
  • Engine
  • V8 with Offenhauser Aluminum Heads, Edelbrock Dual Intake Manifold, 2 Stromberg 2-Barrel Carburetors, Headers
  • Transmission
  • 3-Speed Manual
  • Suspension
  • Independent Front Suspension, Live Rear Axle, Lowering Springs
  • Brakes
  • 4-Wheel Drum Brakes

1951 Mercury Custom Coupe

Though there has been much debate over the years about who first chopped the top on a 1949-51 Mercury, Sam Barris, Buddy Alcorn, Lou Bettancourt, et al., there is no doubt that the chopped topped Mercury is one of the most storied custom car stylings in automotive history. 

For many years it was believed that Sam Barris was the originator of the chopped top Merc’. His 1949 Mercury was first shown at the Oakland Roadster Show in February of 1951. While shown painted, it had an incomplete interior, which could possibly explain why it only received second in the full custom class. Its first appearance in a publication was in December 1951. It was styled with full fade away fenders, molded in rear quarter panels, a heavy chop with straight B-pillars, a grille using parts of a 1951 Ford, sharp hood corners and hand-made taillights. It is said that Sam Barris bought the car used and worked on it in his spare time after shop hours at Barris Kustoms. At the same time, during shop hours, he was working on the Gaylord 1949 Mercury Convertible Custom. While not a coupe, it is worth noting that this car is said to be the first 1949 Mercury ever chopped. While no one may ever know absolutely who chopped the first 1949-51 Mercury Custom Coupe, Sam Barris’ car was the first to be shown at a car show. 

This 1951 Mercury Custom Coupe, lead sled, was built for the original owner by Arizona Street Rods in Phoenix. The owner who lived in Southern California until moving to Phoenix in the 1950’s grew up with Rod Palmer, owner of Arizona Street Rods. After building a ’32 Roadster together, the pair decided it was time to build the chopped top Mercury of their youths. 

The custom modifications to the car are numerous. They include a three-inch chop, lowering springs, a nosed hood with rounded corners, a decked trunk lid, shaved handles and emblems. It has 1953 Buick side trim, a molded grille shell with a 1952 DeSoto grille and extra teeth, as well as 1954 Mercury taillights, restyled bumpers and flush fit skirts. It retains its original Flathead V8 engine with the addition of Offenhauser aluminum heads, an Edelbrock dual intake manifold, a pair of Stromberg 2-barrel carburetors, headers and Smithy’s steel pack mufflers. The V8 is mated to a three-speed manual transmission. The electrical system has been upgraded to 12-volt and an extra capacity stainless fuel tank has been added. Power steering, as well as a Vintage Air system with custom made vents have also been installed. 

The interior, fitted by Vic Kitchens Custom Upholstery in Lake Havasu, AZ was done to mimick the Hirohata Mercury and is fitted with tan and black leather. The headliner is Desert Camel UltraSuede and the carpet is Mercedes Saffron fine tuft.  The passenger compartment has also been fitted with a modern cabin light, Pioneer sound system, Dakota Digital instrumentation and a cut-down (3 inches) stock steering wheel.  

Featured in the May 2010 issue of Rod & Custom Magazine and winner of a Boyd Coddington Top Ten Award, this iconic hot rod is ready to find a new owner who appreciates its style and the history behind it. 

Exterior

Finished in gloss black paint, the exterior appears in beautiful condition. The custom modifications to the car are numerous. They include a three-inch chop, lowering springs, a nosed hood with rounded corners, a decked trunk lid, shaved handles and emblems. It has 1953 Buick side trim, a molded grille shell with a 1952 DeSoto grille and extra teeth, as well as 1954 Mercury taillights, restyled bumpers and flush fit skirts.

Interior

The interior, fitted by Vic Kitchens Custom Upholstery in Lake Havasu, AZ was done to mimick the Hirohata Mercury and is fitted with tan and black leather. The headliner is Desert Camel UltraSuede and the carpet is Mercedes Saffron fine tuft.  The passenger compartment has also been fitted with a modern cabin light, Pioneer sound system, Dakota Digital instrumentation and a cut-down (3 inches) stock steering wheel. 

Engine and Drivetrain

This Merc retains its original Flathead V8 engine with the addition of Offenhauser aluminum heads, an Edelbrock dual intake manifold, a pair of Stromberg 2-barrel carburetors, headers and Smithy’s steel pack mufflers. The V8 is mated to a three-speed manual transmission. The engine compartment appears in pristine, show quality condition. 

Log In To View Questions & Comments

To View Questions, Comments, and bidding history for this listing, log in or create an account.

Log In
Register

1951 Mercury Custom Coupe

status
Unsold
Auction End Date
10/28/2020
Number of Bids
{{ number_of_bids }}

1951 Mercury Custom Coupe

ENDED