The last Continental we saw in this series was of the iconic 1961-69 generation designed by Elwood Engel. Its successor was built for the 1970-79 model years, and these cars lost the suicide doors and Lincoln-specific engines but gained even more angular styling. The Town Car option package was aimed at the real high rollers of the Malaise Era, and I’ve found a very solid, refrigerator-white example (photographed at a Northern California self-serve yard last week) that’s sure to make Sajeev Mehta weep bitter, brand-loyal tears.
According to the temporary registration sticker on this car, it was still street-legal less than a year before took its final tow-truck ride.
In California, 1976 is the oldest model year that requires the state’s very stringent emission test, and so it’s possible that there was no easy way to make this big, dirty 460 comply with the not-so-strict requirements for ’76 cars. Actually, it takes something on the order of a dead cylinder to fail the 1976 test, so it’s more likely that the car’s last owner tired of the single-digit fuel economy. The sad truth is that there’s not much collector value for mid-to-late-70s Lincolns.
The interior is in excellent condition, there’s not a speck of rust on the car, and all the body damage could have been fixed for peanuts.
Cartier clock! I thought about buying this one for my collection, but the failure rate for Malaise Era Ford mechanical clocks is exactly 100% (in my experience).
In case you’re wondering, this car has quadrophonic 8-track capability. I’d be listening to Ace Frehly’s greatest hit non-stop, were I to find myself transported back to the late 1970s with the keys to a ’76 Town Car in hand.
I’m sure our European readers are clawing at their monitors in outrage, seeing this amazing car consigned to the world’s scrap-metal market like it’s just another ’91 Camry. All I can say is: come over here and ship one home!
You’ve got your standards!