ME AND MY RIDE: Cheryll Gibson drives her Ford Fairlane Custom tourer daily.
ME AND MY RIDE: Cheryll Gibson drives her Ford Fairlane Custom tourer daily. Matt Taylor GLA200918RIDE

Me and My Ride: Bruce and Cheryll Gibson's 1964 Fairlane

BRUCE and Cheryll Gibson's 1964 Ford Fairlane 500 compact is a much loved car.

"We bought it off Alan Hansel, Big Al, in 1999," Bruce said.

"It was nearly a 20 year-old car we he bought it and restored in 1980.

"But it was the love of his life, he didn't want just anyone to take it and abuse it.

"Unfortunately Al passed away not long ago and we took the car to his funeral."

It took Bruce and Cheryll nearly a year to fully restore the car.

"It didn't help that my son ran into the back of a Military Police Jeep not long after we bought it," he said.

"The front passenger side mudguard, bonnet and firewall were bent.

"The car was OK, but it took us three months to get it back on the road because parts were hard to come by.

"We got it ready just in time for our first rally to Canberra, the Shannon's 2000 tour."


ME AND MY RIDE: Cheryll Gibson with her Ford Fairlane tourer at Tondoon Botanic Gardens.
ME AND MY RIDE: Bruce and Cheryll Gibson's 1964 Ford Fairlane Custom at Tondoon Botanic Gardens. Matt Taylor GLA200918RIDE

A lot of work was also done under the bonnet.

"The original engine, a 289 V8 was a bit tired," Bruce said.

"Those motors aren't easy to come by now, good ones that is.

"But it was a bit small to tow our caravan so I replaced it with a 302 Windsor which I modernised a bit.

"I increased the horsepower by putting in a full flow alloy head, roller rockers, Crow cam, 600 Holley carbie, extractors and electronic ignition.

"It's much more reliable now and it really motors along, but it's not a drag car."

Since then the couple have used the car to travel extensively.

"We love touring in it," Bruce said.

"We've driven the Great Ocean Road, to Canberra twice, done the full loop to Adelaide then up to Darwin then home again.

"I'd like to go right around Australia in it one day."


Bruce said he fell in love with this particular model Fairlane when he saw a brand new one as a boy.

"These old cars have real style," he said.

"They also have the same running gear as the original Mustangs, but they're more of a family car."

Does he have any future plans for the car?

"I'll keep it for a while, but I bought another one 20 years ago, a 1962 original car," he said.

"It's been sitting in storage ever since and I'll restore it when I retire."

Today the old Fairlane has done well over 300,000 miles.

"It's never been off the road and Cheryll loves driving it," Bruce said.

"She uses it all the time, I hardly get the chance to get behind the wheel these days."