For the 1956 model year, Lincoln introduced all-new models, and an all-new hierarchy. The Lincoln Custom was dropped, making the Capri the entry-level Lincoln. The Premiere, meanwhile, became Lincoln’s flagship. The car carried bright colors, more trim, and a number of safety features, like deep-dish steering wheel, padded dash, seat backs and door panels and better door latches. It was expensive, too, with a hardtop coupe, a four-door sedan, and a convertible all ranging between $4,600 and $4,750.
Only one motor was offered across the line: the 368-cid, 285-hp overhead-valve V-8 was mated to an automatic transmission. A 12-volt electrical system was also new for all Ford products, including the Lincoln Premiere. Power seats and windows were standard on the Premiere, and most owners also added power brakes. For 1957, the Premiere gained big fins, more chrome, four headlights, and engine output was bumped to 300 hp. A four-door Landau hardtop sedan was added to the Premiere lineup this year, as well, and prices jumped by approximately $500 on nearly all models.
From a collectible standpoint, the mid-1950s Lincoln Premiere possesses an imposing road presence. It is large and striking, and carries with it a ton of 1950s nostalgia. The cars are also somewhat complicated, and fairly rust-prone. Those two facts have caused attrition to thin the ranks, and means spares and high quality cars can be problematic to find. When bought right, however, the Lincoln Premiere is a terrific and affordable car.
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