One of the most significant American sports cars ever built, the first production Ford Thunderbird, will be sold at No Reserve during the 38th Annual Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Event in Scottsdale, Arizona, Jan. 11-18, 2009. The Raven Black 1955 T-Bird was produced by Ford Motor Company on Sept. 9, 1954, and represents the birth of Ford’s sports car programme. 'We’re extremely proud to offer this incredible vehicle that I’ve followed closely over the years,' said Steve Davis, president of Barrett-Jackson. 'For Thunderbird enthusiasts and general collectors alike, this is a rare chance to own the first production Ford T-Bird – an American icon. It’s been meticulously restored to original specifications and comes with plenty of documentation to tell its amazing story.' Penned by Ford designer Frank Hershey, the Thunderbird was a hit among sports car fans across America and became an instant competitor for the Chevrolet Corvette. The first T-Bird is equipped with a 292 Y-block engine, Fordomatic (automatic) transmission, power steering, power windows and power seats. Ford’s new star was tested and featured in numerous articles upon its release, including “Testing the Thunderbird” in the Oct. 4, 1954 issue of “Sports Illustrated.” The first Thunderbird has also been displayed at venues across the United States, from Ford’s headquarters in Dearborn, Mich., to the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. The 1955 Thunderbird will be joined by approximately 1000 collector vehicles and automobilia to be sold at the historic Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale auction. Lifestyle attractions will also return to Barrett-Jackson in January in the form of luxury vendors, galas and fashion shows. Barrett-Jackson’s trendy night-spot, “The Garage,” will be the site of exclusive gatherings throughout the event.