Whenever someone asks me to explain why I like the Thunderbird, I always tell them it is because of the hooknose styling and suicide doors. The questioner will then look around to see if I’m being followed by men in white coats…but I’m not, because I lost them years ago, but if you want a […]
The original Ford Thunderbird was launched in 1955 as a lithe two-seater convertible to compete with European imports and Chevy’s Corvette. The T-bird actually outsold the original Corvette by large numbers in the first few years, but Ford’s product planners thought they could do even better by adding rear seats and redesigning the Thunderbird for […]
This next car comes as a tip from Cory who writes: over the top custom g body monte carlo- what is it?? That is a fabulous question, and one that the seller doesn’t really do a good job answering with a few lines of text and a total of 24 photos. The seller reports that a family is asking him to help sell their Dad’s uncompleted custom thing which is described as starting life as an ’87 Monte Carlo and now its been given a full Johnny Cash treatment with all manner of 59 T-Bird parts, Ford wheel caps, and whatever a “Continental Kit” is. I’m confused, but strangely attracted. Find this 1987 Chevrolet Monte Carlo Kustom offered for $15,000 in Hartford, CT via craigslist.
In 1983 Mercury introduced the sixth generation of their Cougar, which was at one point in time a restyled and Mercuried version of the Ford Mustang. Actually, by the mid 1980s, it might have lived on the Mustang’s Fox platform, but it was much closer in size and equipment to the Ford Thunderbird or Lincoln Continental. Today’s example is offered with an odometer that has only 23k miles on the 5-digit display, but it does have more road crust that you’d like to see in a low mile classic. Find this 1985 Mercury Cougar offered for $7,950 in Stanley, WI via Hemmings.
The Mercury Cougar started out way back in 1967 as an up-market version of the Ford Mustang. For its first two generations the Cougar was based on the Mustang, but then in 1974 it changed to a big Torino intermediate platform where it was a counterpart to the similarly plus sized Thunderbird. In 1980 the Cougar was switched to the compact Fox platform where it was a counterpart to the Thunderbird and Granada, but in 1989 it was switched to the MN12 platform where it got things the Fox didn’t have, like an independent rear suspension and available supercharged powertrains. A few years later the Cougar name was put on a front-wheel-drive thing that was based on the European Ford Mondeo, but we don’t want to talk about that. Find this 1989 Mercury Cougar XR7 offered for $12,000 in Merrimac, MA via craigslist. Tip from Cory.
There are a few things that we can debate about cars, but there are a few givens that are unarguable. First is that the manual gearbox is better than the automatic. Next is that the lap belt is cooler (but less safe) than the shoulder belt. And thirdly, is that 1965 is the best year for automobiles. Ever. No caveats, no jokes, just the basic fact that cars in 1965 were better than older cars from before that year, and every car since 1965 have been uglier and less cool. Anyway, this next car is undeniably cool, even if you can’t see the outside in one photo, but just check out those gauges — that speedo! HOT! Find this 1965 Ford Thunderbird offered for $6,500 in Vallejo, CA via craigslist.
The second generation Ford Thunderbird (1958-1960) is a cool car. It was the first Thunderbird to get a rear seat — because Ford execs (a young Robert McNamara among them) felt it needed the extra passenger space and that it could still compete with Chevy’s Corvette. Welp…history has decided that they were wrong, because the Thunderbird was slowly boated into oblivion while the Corvette is a desirable classic and a new car showroom stunner to this day…but Ford sold 9 T-Birds for every 1 Corvette sold in the 1960 model year alone. With 200k T-Birds sold from 1958-1960 (versus 30k Vettes) you can figure the supply/demand thing out and you’ll find that the T-Bird is way cheaper on the open market today. Find this 1960 Ford Thunderbird offered for $7000 in Silsbee, TX via craigslist. Tip from Ramjet.
I’m no expert on selling cars…but I do know a thing or two, and one of them is that you should never stage your car to look like you’ve just dug it out from a grave. If you did unearth this thing in your yard, maybe consider pushing/pulling it a few feet into fresh dirt before taking pictures with your dirty thumbnail obscuring the ancient license plate…oh, wait, there is an old bench seat sitting next to a tarp that’ll do. Find this 1930’s Ford Kit Car based on a 1959 Thunderbird offered for $5500 in Covina, CA via craigslist.
When a car gets sent in as a tip, I always want to post it…because people send in good stuff and I’d post EVERYTHING I get tipped if I had the time…but when a car gets set into to the DT tips line by two different people…that is a different story, so here it goes. Find this 1987 Ford Thunderbird Turbo offered for $5,500 in Monterey, CA via craigslist. Tip from Jeff and Rock On!
The Ford Thunderbird Turbo Coupe was introduced in 1983 on the ninth generation Thunderbird platform. Sure, you could get a 5.0 windsor V8 as an upgrade over the basic V6, but if you really wanted performance you needed to step up to the 2.3 liter Turbo-4. Selecting the Turbo Coupe added a standard 5-speed manual gearbox, limited slip differential, big 16-inch wheels and sporty analog gauges. Today a nice used example is cheap and fun. Find this 1987 Ford Thunderbird Turbo Coupe offered for $5000 in Danville, CA via craigslist.