- Hero image courtesy of: barnfinds.com, all other photos as credited, text & errors by: Chris Breeden

Hot Rod Icon: 1940 Ford Coupe

A look at one of the most popular cars in Hot Rodding

From the beginning of Hot Rodding, the 1940 Ford Coupe has been one of the most desirable cars. With its curvy and flowing lines, it's easy to see why. The relatively small cars have been turned into Hot Rod/Street Rods, tens of thousands of times.

Above: Images courtsey of: barrett-jackson.com

This body style and year of Ford, was even desirable to bootleggers and moonshiners in the Southern part of the United States. It has a large capacity trunk, making it able to haul their product in. In an effort to conceal the weight of their illegal loads, they found the rear suspension easy to reinforce. This eliminated the tell tale sag that would get them noticed by law enforcement. Lastly, they came equipped with the easy to build Ford Flathead engine

Above: Photos courtsey of: grautogallery.com

Another mechanical advantage this car, and '39 Fords, had over earlier Ford coupes, was the addition of factory hydraulic brakes. Yes, those cats at the Blue Oval didn't introduce hydraulic brakes until 1939! Those brakes, along with the 90 horsepower Flathead V8 engine, made these very easy to build cars.

Photo courtesy of: happcarz.com

Photo courtesy of: happcarz.com

A very stunning car!

Photo courtesy of: hotrod.com

Photo courtesy of: hotrod.com

1940 Ford Coupes have found their way onto dirt back roads, dirt race tracks, Saturday night Boulevards, SoCal drag strips and even the lawns of many Concourses! They are as versatile as they need to be and that is how they have been able to stand the test of time. In fact, just like many cars before it, the '40 has become so popular they are starting to be made, new, out of steel. Dennis Carpenter, a long time 1940 Ford Coupe parts specialist, began making officially licensed new bodies in 2010. Take a good long look at the pictures above and it will become clear why this is one of the most popular Hot Rods of all time. If you are lucky enough to see one in person, you will definitely see why. All this Coupe talk is making me want to Keep on Cruisin'!

Art by: Chris Breeden

Art by: Chris Breeden

What do you think of these icons of Hot Rodding?

Let us know in the COMMENTS below!

Check out the other stories in this series:

Thanks for reading!

Join In

Comments (6)

  • Very interesting, and it's really an embodiment of Edsel's artistic influence. Apparently, he loved the modern, flowing lines and kickstarted it all, on the Lincoln Zephyr.

    This has reminded me to go looking for that 1:18 scale 1940 Ford that for some reason, I never got.

      2 years ago
  • Fantastic looking car, I think the prettiest Ford ever made..

      2 years ago