Junkyard Find: 1973 Ford LTD

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
junkyard find 1973 ford ltd

Every time I see a junked Ford LTD of this era, I recall my early-childhood memories of my grandfather’s ’69 LTD hardtop. My parents had a ’67 Ford Custom and a ’49 Cadillac sedan at the time, and I thought Grandpa’s super-clean LTD was the most luxurious transportation imaginable. Nowadays, of course, most big Fords of the 1965-75 period that one encounters are total hoopties… but even a junked Early Malaise Era LTD still retains a bit of its original class.

You know, the ’73 LTD really was a better deal than the ’73 Jaguar XJ6!

Lowriders, hot-rodders, and ironic rockabilly hipsters don’t care for big Fords. They suck alarming quantities of gas, so it’s hard to justify one as a cheap beater. Mostly, these cars just get used up, then sit in a forgotten driveway for decades before getting crushed.

These cars were very comfortable, and held together reasonably well (as long as you didn’t mind electrical problems and lots of front-suspension looseness after 50,000 or so miles).

This one boasts the shockingly heavy but torque-centric 429 engine. Real-world highway fuel economy was probably just barely into the double digits, which became an issue not long after this car was sold.

Look, it’s one of the infamous Park-To-Reverse Settlement stickers!

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2 of 86 comments
  • 05lgt 05lgt on Apr 28, 2012

    Thanks Murilee for reminding me how old I am, how much fun these boats were, and how much I love modern cars.

  • The Dark One The Dark One on Jul 22, 2012

    My Uncle had one of these when I was little; what I remember most about these cars is the huge armrest the front seat had. When it was up, the bench seated 3 adults. When it was down, it seated a 3 year old! Even if the police did care, they porbably couldn't see because my aunt was chain smoking Pall Mall's with the windows up to keep the cold A/C air in. It's amazing people my age lived to tell our stories.

  • MaintenanceCosts Nice color combo. Worth noting that this is not a conventional automatic but an automated manual, which gets you all the roughness of a real manual with none of the fun. Also not sure why everyone loves the V10 so much; it sounds more UPS truck than performance car except at the extreme high end of the tach. Having said that the E60's looks have aged VERY well; the car looks nicer now than it did when it was new.
  • Kcflyer just happy it's not black, white or silver. hooray for color choice
  • Matt Posky I paid a little under $300 bucks per month to park in Queens and was told by everyone else with a car that it was a great deal. Parking in Manhattan is typically far more expensive to rent and often involves waiting 20 minutes while someone fetches your car. Unless it was a secure garage where you yourself have 24 hour access directly to the vehicle, and it was less than a block away, there is no scenario in which I would actually purchase a parking spot in Manhattan.
  • Jeff S VoGhost--He is a Russian troll.
  • GrumpyOldMan The weather protection of a motorcycle plus the bulk of a car.