By on August 6, 2020

Achingly simple question today, folks. With the demise of the Ford Fusion last week, the Blue Oval now fields zero domestic four-door sedans, leaving buyers to choose instead among a bevy of trucks and utility vehicles.

It’s the first time since 1908 that the automaker hasn’t built a U.S. passenger car with four doors (earlier pre-Model T models sported rear doors, but omitted the front). So, with plenty of history to choose from, which domestic Ford sedan gets your pick as best of the bunch?

You can be completely subjective and let your personal experiences and emotions run wild. If a base Maverick hauled you and your friends to Kiss concerts in your formative years, don’t be afraid to place it atop the gold medal podium.

Same goes for the Fairmont and Escort.

While yours truly has never owned a Ford product, a life-long love of BIG CARS points his mind towards the Galaxie and LTD, with the 1963½ Galaxie 500 XL being the top choice among the former nameplate. Ultimately a replacement for the Galaxie, the LTD shined brightest in the early ’70s, thought the low-end full-size Customs of this era are also desirable.

Who can forget Harry Callahan’s battle with Lt. Briggs in the front seat of a sky blue ’72 Custom 500? Two great heads of hair going at it.


It’s likely a good number of you will give in to Panther love and claim the Crown Victoria is both the best and most iconic of Ford’s many sedans. Spanning decades, the ubiquitous Crown Vic soaked up endless punishment in numerous roles before its eventual retirement. Countless examples still roam the roadways of America, racking up a dizzying number of miles on the odometer.

Feel free to express yourselves today. Which Ford gets your pick?

[Images: Ford]

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93 Comments on “QOTD: Is There a Ford in Your Past?...”

  • avatar

    As far as actual market impact I’d say the Taurus – 1st gen.

    Another with big market impact would have been the LTD option for the Galaxie. I think you can draw a line from “Luxury Trim Decor” to CAFE to Denali/Platinum/High Country/Limited etc and tell an interesting story about what America WANTS at the same time.

    • 0 avatar

      Outside of the “Model A” and “Model T” which were both revolutionary for Ford, I’m going to agree with the Taurus as being the most important Ford Sedan since WWII

    • 0 avatar

      No the market impact of the Taurus pales in comparison to that of the Mustang. It created an entirely new segment that was even named after it. The fact that continued on when all the competitors went away also shows its significance.

      That of course leads to the Falcon from which it was derived and that also created other new segments. The first was the Comet and its creation of the short lived “senior-compact” segment. That of course led to the Fairlane which created the intermediate segment, which eventually was called the midsize segment. In its later years it also gave us the Maverick as mentioned in the article. The car that became the best selling new car introduction since its older brother the Mustang. Then its final derivative the Granada was the first mass market upscale compact. It was again the best selling new nameplate since the Maverick.

      Of course the model T created a new segment, the mass market car and ensured that Ford had a future unlike the dozens of other mfgs at the time.

      So yeah the Taurus is in the top 5 but definitely not the car with the greatest impact on the market, nor the most significant car to Ford.

      Heck I’d go so far as to say it comes in after the Fairmont, another highly successful new name plate introduction which of course spawned the generation of Mustang that was the beginning of the end of the malaise era by changing the tide of decreasing performance and power to one of increasing performance and power.

      Model T
      Ford V-8
      Fairmont/Fox chassis

      While they are showing up chronologically that in my opinion is also the order of their significance in the market.

      So I guess I was wrong, not even in the top 5 in terms of impact on the market and/or Ford.

      • 0 avatar

        I agree totally with your assessment of all things Ford, but in light of the discontinued Ford 4-door sedan I narrowed my list to Ford sedans

        • 0 avatar

          That does bring the Taurus into the top 5 by dropping the Mustang.

          • 0 avatar

            SEDANS being the operative term.

            I was hoping someone would mention the LTDs Nylon Tricot interior sometimes referred to as “pantie cloth”. ;-)

          • 0 avatar

            Ford interiors came in the most unnatural red, green and blue ever found inside a car. The 70s-80s interiors were hideous

        • 0 avatar

          Now that I’ve thought about it some more, the Taurus gets bumped out of the top 5 again by the Escort. Like the Fairmont it came out of the gate quicker than the Taurus and like the Taurus it took home the gold in a couple of years.

    • 0 avatar

      Galaxie to Galaxie Ltd to LTD to Crown Victoria. That one “model” lasted from 1958 through 2012, though the Crown Victoria trim name was used on the 1955-56 Fairlane as well, just as it started as a trim package on the LTD in 1980. But while the Galaxie and up were all full-sized models, the Fairlane was considered mid-sized and died when the Taurus replaced it.

      • 0 avatar

        The Fairlane name died well before the Taurus came around. The top trim became the Fairlane Torino, then just Torino and Gran Torino then became the top trim.

        The Torino line up gave way to the LTD II which then was replaced with a Granada on the Fox Chassis that morphed into the LTD while all full size became LTD Crown Victorias. It was that midsized LTD that the Taurus replaced.

  • avatar

    There is a Ford in our present, a 2013 Focus SE hatchback with a 5-speed manual transmission. Reviews of the model, including TTAG’s, greatly influenced my decision to buy it and I have not been disappointed. It has proven to be a very good car to drive and to own. However, it will likely be our last Ford since the company no longer wants to build what we want to buy. When we were shopping for the Focus, the runner up was a Mazda3, the old model with the maniacal grin. If I had to buy something in the near future, it would be a Mazda3 hatchback with the 2.5 turbo engine.

  • avatar

    I had a couple of 70’s Maverics, an 80’s Escort and Tempo, and a 95 Taurus. I took my driver’s test in my parents 70-something LTD.

  • avatar

    A 1962 Ranch Wagon with V8 & Fordomatic two speed slush box, a very good and trouble free car .

    Four ‘A’ models .

    two 1959 F1 1/2 ton pickups, both 6 cylinder strippers and good stout rigs .

    1982 Escort L stripper that surprised me with how sturdy and easy to repair it was, it rarely needed much under the hood and had suffered a long and hard life before my G.F. got it, eventually the timing belt snapped and bent all the valves .

    Prolly more I’ll remember as soon as I click “send” .


  • avatar

    The first gen ’86 Taurus by a mile.

    Rarely does a family sedan cause such a stir in an otherwise bland (and now endangered) segment. The design was groundbreaking (and still attractive to this day) and there was no compromise with style versus function. Unlike any American sedan at the time, the ergonomics were thoughtful and the dynamics leaned toward a Euro feel. It was a huge gamble for Ford that paid off. That design influenced the automotive landscape well into the 90’s and raised the bar.

  • avatar

    I’ve only owned one Ford, a 1989 Mustang LX 5.0/5-speed I bought new. Loved that car.

    While I’ve never owned a Ford sedan, I really like the idea of finding a 1971 Ford Custom 500 like Burt Reynolds drove in White Lightning. Lots of Ford sedans used/destroyed in that movie. Some scenes show him using a 4-speed and others an automatic. Something about that big brown car speaks to me, especially the 4-speed version.

    • 0 avatar

      Bet this car will outrun anything on the road….even a motorsicle? One of the best lines in a great “car” movie that I remember from seeing so many decades ago.

      • 0 avatar

        ? I thought we weren’t supposed to admit we watches and fully enjoyed those early Burt Reynolds movies ? .

        Like J.J. & The Dixie Dance Kings…..


        • 0 avatar

          Gator. White Lightning was ok but he really beat up that one in the namesake movie that came after it in ’76.

          Ok. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe it WAS White Lightning!

        • 0 avatar

          Hey I was young and it was that Ford that was the star for me.

          • 0 avatar

            Notice I didn’t say I don’t like those old movies….

            Just the other day I chanced upon a really crappy early 1980’s ‘horror’ movie set in some mine …. it was wretched, not up to “B” grade yet I watched the entire thing .

            I really enjoyed most of those crappy early 1970’s and late 1960’s movies .


  • avatar

    Post-college I was a Japanese only car guy. Dreams of Nissans and Hondas haunted my 20-something brain.

    Then came the day where I had to borrow my dad’s 1994 Mercury Sable. To my surprise it actually drove really nicely and the 3.8L V6 felt so much more powerful than the 99hp 2.0L Nissan engine I had in the Stanza. It was then that I decided to give American cars another chance.

    A few years later I owned a used 1997 Mercury Mountaineer AWD with the 5.0L. Sure it consumed fuel like crazy and had a small gas tank, but it was very reliable with only two minor repairs in its 5 years of service.

    Later on I drove a 2001 Mercury Grand Marquis, which I liked but never loved. The 4.6L seemed slow, driving back-to-back, compared to the 1994 Buick Roadmaster LT1 I also owned. But the Marquis did get better overall mileage – no surprise given the 2.73s out back!

    I also owned – for a short time – a 1992 Taurus wagon that ended up having a bad transmission.

    I’m a current owner of a 2014 Mustang V6. And a reserve holder of a Bronco.

    But I would still say that I’m not a Ford guy! It’s just that I’m not a GM person anymore, and I’ve never owned a Dodge. And I’ve had too many repair issues with my Euro cars. And the current crop of Japanese designs leave me a little cold.

  • avatar

    I agree that the greatest Ford sedan was that 1st-gen Taurus, and I think that the original SHO’s were the pinnacle of that generation. My ’91 5-speed SHO was a ridiculous amount of fun, and a really well-designed, well-assembled sedan.

  • avatar

    Personally, it is the aero-style Crown Victoria.

  • avatar

    The dead is done. TTAC is now owned by fascist conservatives. ;-)

  • avatar

    Well, I don’t know if it’s the best Ford sedan ever, but I sure remember the ’69 T-bird with the suicide doors. Did they make these without the silly landau roof?

    (And, yes, I do really like this car.)

    But the greatest Ford sedan ever? Easy…the ’86 Taurus. Not only the best Ford sedan ever, but possibly the best American sedan ever.

    Plus, for bonus points:
    1) This car likely saved the whole company.
    2) SHO. Enough said.

    • 0 avatar


      I have owned one Ford, a ’05 Focus ST sedan. The ST was actually the successor to the SVT – same suspension and chassis tuning, but instead of the pumped-up Zetec, it had the Mazda-sourced 2.3, and a manual. Loved it.

      I also owned a ’88 Mercury Tracer, but as we know, that was really a Mexican-made Mazda, so it doesn’t count. At the time I bought the Tracer, my second choice was a Taurus, but I opted for the Tracer because I was doing tons of Interstate traveling at the time, so something cheaper seemed like a better idea.

  • avatar
    Jeff Weimer

    “88 Thunderbird LX 5.0, 1997 Escort, and currently a ’96 Ranger.

    ’95 Mazda Protege kinda counts, too, right?

  • avatar
    Steve Biro

    In terms of market impact, the first-gen Taurus is the greatest Ford sedan. My personal favorite is more along the lines of the 1963/64 Galaxy 500 XL two door. The 1967 fastback version of the same car is also right there. Do the early-to-mid 60’s Thunderbirds count? Probably not and more’s the pity.

    I have personally owned a 1973 Maverick two door with the big six. Couldn’t kill that car. It was still on the road more than a decade later. I’ve had a 1974 Pinto. Laugh all you want. I rode that car hard and put it away wet every day and still put 109-thousand miles on it before trading it in. I even ran it in SCCA Showroom Stock one season.

    Other Fords I have owned: 1978 and 79 Mercury Capris, the Fox-bodied ones. Do they count? The first had the 2.8-liter V6, the second the 3.8-liter V6. I had one of the early Ford Festivas (a Mazda built under license by Kia). 100 percent trouble free and a whole lot of fun. A 1999 Escort ZX2. More trouble-free fun.

    Then there was the 2003 Ranger. Standard cab, standard bed, 2.3-liter four (the newer engine), five-speed manual, rear-wheel drive. It had the XL package, which meant power windows and door locks, carpeting, nicer seats, chrome wheels and a sliding rear window. The truck was great in the snow and got 33mpg on the highway, 25 around town and 28 combined.

    I loved that truck. It still looked good after seven years and still made me smile every time I started it up. But I finally traded it in because it was built during the Jacques Nasser years – when Ford was really leaning on suppliers. The basic truck – body, frame, engine and transmission – was great. But every component that came from an outside supplier failed – sometimes more than once. Front end parts. Power steering pump. Alternator. And much more. When I realized I had spent enough money on repairs and parts in one year to make new car payments for the same length of time, I let it go.

    Ford hasn’t made much since that interest me.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      I would call it a toss up between the Taurus and the Fairmont. Obviously the Fairmont itself did not itself create the impact of the Taurus, but the Fox platform underneath it would underpin cars that would make up a significant chunk of Ford’s lineup for over a decade and kept the Mustang alive.

      I have owned many 2 door Fox Bodies, but never one of the sedan variants. I believe my only Ford sedan ownership was a 1997 Escort and I believe a Sierra IIRC for a brief while overseas. Several Hatches, SUV’s and Trucks…but not many sedans.

      • 0 avatar

        Yup the Fairmont/Fox chassis had a bigger impact on the market and Ford.

        The Fairmont was the 3rd best selling vehicle in 1978 its first year of introduction, moving over 400k units.

        The Taurus launched at 11th and moved under 300k units in its first year.

        • 0 avatar

          I should restate that the Farimont was the best selling new nameplate introduction with that first year 3rd place spot. The highest a new name plate had done in its first year up until that point. The Escort also took the bronze in 1981 its first year. Meanwhile the Taurus didn’t even make it into the top 10 its first year.

  • avatar
    R Henry

    Check out the front end body/bumper misalignment in that lede photo. If ever a single photo summed up what was wrong with US automobile manufacturing in 1979, that is it. A video would include a coughing, stalling cold engine.

    —Hmmm. The three dudes all going camping together is a bit edgy for ’79.

    • 0 avatar

      Good eye – I didn’t see that manufacturing flaw. And they put it out in an advertising picture, no less. Wow.

    • 0 avatar

      Well I think it is supposed to be 4 guys, the Dads in the front and the Sons in the back, you just can’t see the 2nd kid.

      The vehicles in the brochures, and that pic is from the brochure, usually use pre-production prototypes used for testing. So they aren’t necessarily concerned with proper fit. That said if you are going to use your hand built prototype in your brochure at least adjust it so the parts being photographed look right.

    • 0 avatar

      That bumper droop is unacceptable and in an ad no less. Someone in marketing really dropped the ball or had a vendetta against Ford

      • 0 avatar
        R Henry

        Sadly, such misalignments are not unique to 1979 Ford LTDs.

        Next time you are at a light behind a recent Dodge Challenger, note the decklid fitment. You will likely note, in about 50% of cars, the tail lights on the body are not properly aligned with the tail light segments mounted on the decklid.

        Next time you are similarly at a light behind a Tesla Model S, note how the gaps around the rear hatch are frequently VERY tight on one side, and big enough for your thumb on the other.

  • avatar

    I’ve owned one Ford produced sedan which was really a good vehicle for me. 2000 Lincoln LS with the V6 and the 5MT. However one one else bought one (~5300 produced) so its not a significant car in Ford’s car history. Bought it as a third owner in 2003 with 35K on the clock and drove it until it rusted away in 2017 with 190K on the clock (and the original clutch).

    For most significant for Ford it has to be both the shoebox and the Taurus. Both saved the company when its back was against the wall.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I have had 3 Fords and 1 Mercury. The Mercury was an 85 Lynx 2 door which my brother gave me and it was the worst car I ever owned. I then had an 94 Escort LX wagon which was a very good car, then a 2000 Taurus with the DOHV 3.0 V-6 which was quick and a very good car. Just bought a 2008 Ranger with a 2.3 I-4 that is very solid body wise and mechanically.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    Fords in my past.

    1970 Mustang Coupe-302 C4 Western vinyl roof trim package in ginger.
    1974 Mercury Cougar-XR-7 351W FMX in sliver with a burgundy landau top and interior.
    1987 Ford Thunderbird-3.8 V6 in light blue.
    1995 Ford Thunderbird LX-4.6 in black.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX


    My dad had:
    34 Ford
    56 Thunderbird
    68 Galaxie 500
    74 Maverick V8
    78 Fiesta (German-built)
    90 Taurus

    I’ve had:
    71 Pinto
    76 Pinto
    80 Bobcat
    82 LTD

    I haven’t owned a Ford since 1996, and nothing they offer today interests me. Plus, their quality issues are becoming legendary.

    • 0 avatar

      Your dad had nice cars.
      My dad had a 56 2 dr Fairlane with one of those radios with the automatic seek feature
      73 Merc Montego
      76 Merc Zephyr
      96 Tbird (my fav)
      My fav Ford is a 63 Galaxie 500 Convertible

  • avatar

    I used to actually be loyal to Ford but now the only Ford product I could ever see myself buying now is maybe an F-150 or a Mustang.

    Some of the standouts were:

    1992 Thunderbird SC

    It was a wonderful vehicle, maybe my favorite. Gobs of torque down low, smooth controlled ride, tasteful styling that aged really well. Just felt felt very solid and substantial. But the vehicle absolutely fell apart at around 60k miles. From about 40k miles to 90k miles, I had about $8,000 in repair receipts, and none of it had anything to do with the engine or transmission.

    1999 Contour V6

    This is one of those “forgotten” sedans Ford made that were everywhere and then completely disappeared from the roads by about he mid 2000s. They really were very European, maybe that’s why it was a flop. It was barely bigger than an Escort, the back seat might as well have been a Mustang. But the 2.5 V6 was a gem, plenty of power and the handling really was phenomenal. I also liked the understated styling compared to something like the Taurus at the time. Reliability was so-so, I couldn’t believe how cheap I got it brand new, $13,900 loaded with the V6 and most power options.

    • 0 avatar

      ” the only Ford product I could ever see myself buying now is maybe an F-150 ”

      Yup, a lot of people feel that way, especially the Buy American crowd since Ford is the only American automaker left standing, not soiled or cheapened by bailouts, handouts and nationalization.

      And since the demise of the Crown Vic, Marquis and Towncar, the 4-door F-150 is the ‘de facto’ replacement for the 4-door sedan.

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    As the owner (for 10 years!) of a 92 SVO, I join the others in nominating the Taurus — either first or second generation. My first Ford was an 87 Mustang GT, which I traded for the Taurus in 1992. Neither of these cars was perfect. Both — especially the Mustang — were severely under-braked, considering the capabilities of their engines.

    My father’s first, and only, Ford was a 1952 Ford 20 door “custom” with the standard six. That was the first new car my father bought. It was something of a money pit, with odd failures and the help of some mechanic’s malpractice, who left the drain plug out of the differential after changing the gear lube. Somehow, we slogged along with the Ford until 1957, when my Dad bought a new Chevy (also a 6-cylinder stripper). The Chevy proved quite reliable, however, including surviving 2 years in Spain (1958-60) running on questionable fuel. I have no idea how my Dad got the car serviced.

    Since that time, I have rented a variety of Fords, and, other than a late 80s Thunderbird with the 5 liter V-8, they ran the gamut from seriously bad (Focus with the “powershift”) to mediocre (last generation Taurus).

    When I was truck shopping in 2015 for a tow vehicle for my Airstream, I drove an F-150 with the 3.5 liter “Ecoboost” V-6 but it didn’t have quite the cargo capacity I wanted. Like every turbocharged engine I’ve driven, from the 1980s onward, the Ecoboost had a distinctly non-linear throttle response. This is fun in a test drive; but tedious over the long term.

  • avatar

    Love the lead photo. A rwd sedan with probably less than 200 hp and maybe 200 or so lb/ft torque pulling what looks to be a pretty big trailer. On an unimproved road!

  • avatar

    I’m a fan of Ford Galaxies/LTD’s/XL’s from 1969 and earlier. I prefer the 2 door models.
    One can easily argue that the Panther platform was just an extension of the earlier “Galaxie” platform. Other than wheelbase, the frames are nearly identical. I’ve seen on-line where individuals have shaved a few inches off the frame and quite literally bolted their Galaxie onto a Panther frame. I’ve also seen interior swaps from newer Panthers into Galaxie’s. I’ve done personal comparisons and they are close.

    I disagree with those who list the Taurus as significant for Ford. It did not go anywhere.

  • avatar

    I come from a Ford family:

    Grandparents (which i got to drive sitting on Grandpa’s lap):
    1971 Ford LTD – light green/dark green vinyl top over dark green interior
    1978 Ford LTD – Dodger blue/white vinyl top over medium blue interior
    1968 Ford Custom – Grandpa used this as a rural mail route car

    1970 Ford Pinto runabout – Light green over white vinyl interior
    1977 Ford Thunderbird – Black over red cloth interior
    1978 Ford Thunderbird – Black over red interior (replaced totaled ’77)
    1978 Ford Country Squire – White over red vinyl interior
    1981 Ford Country Squire – White over red cloth interior
    1981 Ford Fairmont – Red over red cloth interior
    1984 Ford LTD Country Squire – Brown over tan interior
    1986 Ford Mustang convertible – White, black top over grey interior (4cyl.)
    1988 Ford Taurus wagon – red over grey cloth interior
    1992 Ford Taurus wagon – Purlply over grey cloth interior
    1992 Ford F-150 Custom – I6, 2wd, 5spd. manual
    1994 Ford Explorer – tan over tan cloth interior
    1995 Ford LTD LX – Pink/purple over red leather interior
    2003 Merc Marauder – Black over black
    2002 Ford Explorer – Red over grey leather
    2002 Ford Thunderbird – Black over black/red interior
    2004 Ford Excursion – V10; Black over tan leather
    2004 Merc Marauder – Black over black
    2006 Ford Freestyle – Silver over grey leather
    2010 Ford Expedition – Rust over tan leather
    2015 Ford Escape – Red over black leather
    2015 Ford Escape – Red over tan leather
    2020 Ford Escape – Hybrid; Grey over tan leather

    My cars:
    1985 Ford Escort
    1988 Ford Taurus Wagon (*Dad’s)
    1995 Ford Contour
    1992 Ford F-150 Custom (*Dad’s)

    My grandparent’s Fords stand out the due to the memories of them most of all of these.

    • 0 avatar

      WOW A Ford family no doubt.

    • 0 avatar

      Interesting if you look at my parents buying habits it reflects the change in the market over time:

      Small car + personal luxury coupe
      Station wagon + pony car
      Sedan + SUV
      SUV + SUV
      SUV + CUV
      CUV +CUV

      The Marauders and ’02 T-Bird were kept in AZ for snowbird season.

      Sales chartsbear out Ford’s decision to leave sedans behind in the same way that there are only 4 minivans (Honda/Toyota/FCA/Kia) available now. The CUV (and pickups) rule.

  • avatar

    Top five most “iconic” Ford sedans:

    1. Model T
    2. First-gen Taurus
    3. 1961-9 Continental
    4. Panther Crown Vic and siblings
    5. Other pre-war full-size Fords (Model A, B, and so on)

    Overseas honorable mentions: Mondeo, Australian Falcon

    Non-sedan honorable mentions: F-series, Mustang, Explorer, ’32 coupe

    Sedan I would most want to daily drive: late-model Continental Black Series AWD, or late-model Taurus SHO if Lincoln doesn’t count

    Ford product I would most want to daily drive: late-model Focus RS

    Best driver’s car (sedans): first-gen Taurus SHO, or first-gen Volvo S60R if it counts

    Best driver’s car (all Ford products): first-gen GT; Honorable mention: GT350R, second-gen GT

    Ford products I have owned: None; my parents briefly owned a second-generation Taurus which had various electrical issues and scared them off the brand

  • avatar

    So yeah, you could say there are a few Ford cars in my past and some of them are even 4dr sedans and some are sitting out in the driveway right now.

    Crown Victorias
    Grand Marquis

    Sad to see them go, but the market has spoken and consumers will nickle and dime you to death on a sedan, while throwing money at xUVs or pickups and ask if there is a more expensive version available.

  • avatar

    1951 Ford 2-door Custom sedan. Brought baby me home from the hospital in September 1951.

  • avatar

    I own a 1.0L Fiesta sedan for commuting, which is a competent automobile and well worth the low price I paid for it.

    I also have a crew cab Ford truck, which is really their modern BOF sedan.

  • avatar

    Too many Fords and none of them totally reliable (one much worse than the others, though.)

    • 0 avatar

      Maybe Fords just hate Vulpii? I’m sure some have had better luck with Fiats and Renaults. But I’ll roll the dice on things I can fix myself, parts are everywhere/cheap and not strange to mechanics.

  • avatar
    Dave M.

    Oddly enough, I actually drove a Fusion for the first time on 7/31 – my rental was a Fusion hybrid, which actually impressed me with it’s 48 mpg in the hills of Pennsylvania.

    We weren’t necessarily a “Ford family”, but my parents bought a Ford wagon and Torino new when we were growing up. Of the Detroit 2.5, Ford is the one I’d gravitate to if I wasn’t beholden to Japan Inc.

    My top 3 Ford sedans would be the Model T for obvious reasons, the Falcon, which showed you could make a smaller family car, and the Gen 1 Taurus, which showed we could make a dynamic family car full of innovation.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    I was brought home in a 1956 2-Door Customline ‘Victoria’. It rather than me was The Old Man’s pride and joy at the time. I still prefer that Ford to the more collectible Chevs of that era.

    He went on to later have a ’69 Country Squire, fully loaded and one of our family’s favourite vehicles of all time. Then a T-Bird, followed by a steady stream of Lincolns. He finally gave up on Lincoln circa 1979 and drove only Cadillacs after that.

    For my mother there was a Fairmont wagon which lasted only one year as it seemed ‘cheap and flimsy’ compared to the Chev Caprice sedan that preceded it. The Fairmont was replaced by a final generation Country Squire. After that she only drove Hondas/Accuras.

    I had a Pinto Wagon, which we used for deliveries, etc. A terrible vehicle but a true ‘cockroach’. Not as good as the VW Type III squareback it replaced. The VW Type IV that we ran along with it was light years ahead in design, engineering and driveability, but nowhere near as robust.

    Also had some Ford PLCs. A fully loaded Gran Torino Elite in Ford’s ‘triple brown’ that was so popular in the early 1970’s. The Pucci edition Mark IV, acquired by me as lease takeover from The Old Man’ and which remains my all time favourite vehicle. And a 1st generation downsized T-Bird which was for the era a very good looking vehicle but whose unreliability and poor dealer service drove me away from Ford. We are still convinced that T-Bird tried to kill me, multiple times.

    I did have a one month insurance rental 1st generation Taurus wagon which we liked. But not enough to convince me to give Ford another chance.

    • 0 avatar
      Arthur Dailey

      Forgot the 1st generation Explorer. Not sedan. And a company vehicle that I took over and got rid of fairly rapidly. Decided that it was not for me, when I realized that with a winter coat on I could barely put on the seatbelt. Somehow the area between the seat and the console was just too narrow for somebody with ‘my build’.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        And another which I had for a relatively short period. The FILA T-Bird. Dang my memory is really slipping. :-(

        Either that or I have to try to compile an inventory of all the vehicles that have gone through my posession.

        The FILA was passed around a to a few family members, over a period of a couple of years, as it was generally well regarded.

  • avatar

    I can only go by the ones I’ve driven or owned, and the only FMC vehicle I’ve owned was a 1968 Mercury Montego MX, the equivalent to a Torino, which I’ve also driven.

    I’ll go with the 1969 Torino with the 351 V8. It was mid-size for the era, full size today, and had decent handling with optional suspension bits, and front disc brakes. It was definitely more stylish than any 4-door sedan Ford has made since, without compromising rear headroom or visibility.

  • avatar

    The ’83 Fairmont sedan, high trim with the 302 V8 and manual trans. Then swap whatever Mustang pieces will bolt on. Recaro seats, 15X7″ 10-slot wheels, console, but most of the Mustang’s aftermarket was/is a direct fit.

    The original rear end would be the first to go in the junk pile.

  • avatar

    First and last – 1994 Sable Wagon. Came standard with disintegrating head gaskets and a transmission that did not like to shift on cold, damp days ( a real plus in the Pacific Northwest). Followed (happily) by Japanese manufactured cars.

  • avatar

    I don’t get the love for the Taurus SHO. I drove one and its stupid Tempo/Escort 5-speed transaxle was a serious flaw.

    You had to mule kick the stick for high RPM upshifts.

    An automatic would’ve been a further letdown, but it was manual only, early on.

  • avatar

    Not a happy Ford memory, but a memory. My beautiful bride and I went to Colorado Springs for our honeymoon in 1972. We rented a Pinto there and during our stay decided to drive up to Pike’s Peak. The higher we drove, the more it struggled and the slower the car went. I was on my last slope just shy of the summit with the speedo showing 5 mph and dropping. I told my new wife, “I don”t think this thing will make it.” I was right; the car stalled out as I was turning it around (no small feat on that narrow dirt road with no guardrail and lots of “down” on one side of the road). Put it in neutral and started coasting down the incline until it finally started and we nursed it back down to the entrance. Got a half mile from the summit, but I still have the top of Pike’s Peak on my bucket list. No Ford memory will ever top that for me.

  • avatar

    “…which domestic Ford sedan gets your pick as best of the bunch?”

    -> Points of clarification, please: Is a 2004 Mercury Marauder a “domestic” (produced in U.S. or sold in U.S.?) “Ford” (nameplate or manufacturer?) sedan?

    [Hagerty says their values are increasing.]

    • 0 avatar

      Because Ford dropped the Mercury brand name in Canada it is both a Ford and a Mercury as is the Grand Marquis which was also sold in Canada and Mexico, where they also didn’t sell Mercury, as the Ford Grand Marquis.

      All of the lesser Panthers were made in Canada. The Town Cars were made in the US and then later were consolidated with the others on the Canadian line.

  • avatar

    I loved the 1970/71 2 dr Torino Brougham with the 302 motor. You don’t see them at all anymore. Lots of Chevy Malibus tho.

  • avatar

    No on the Panther Crown Vic/Grand Marquis.First, for such a large car, the cabin is small, as any taxi rider will understand. Secondly, I don’t want to innocently be following another car and give that driver the mistaken impression that he’s being followed and he’s about to see patrol car lights in his mirror. That never floated my boat. No to the original LTD sedan(1965)-if I was of that persuasion, I’d be searching for the late comer’65 Caprice Sports Sedan with 396 and TH400-Chevy got caught not knowing about the LTD, so they took their time coming up with a Chevrolet that when optioned properly was virtually the equal of a Buick Electra.

    My pick as a Ford 4DR would be a ’64 Galaxie 500XL 4DR Hardtop(to me, it held a slight edge over the ’63 version). Bucket seats and console, and open air cruising without ‘B’ pillars.

    • 0 avatar

      In the 1960’s Ford made and sold 4 door post sedans with floor shift four speed trannies, I forget what V8 engines they had but they really hauled the mail .

      A guy I used to work with about ten years ago found one in original red paint and bought it, very nice .

      ? Maybe this was called the “Thunderbolt” ? .


  • avatar

    I’ve had several Fords, as has my family. We’ve always been a Ford family, though I’ve personally had title to more GM products. Since Ford no longer have anything I like, or need, I’m likely not going to buy another.

    In my memory there have been:

    2 Tempos
    4 Escorts (3 93s, and a 99)
    5 Aerostars
    1 Festiva (Mazda by way of Kia)
    1 Aspire (Mazda by way of Kia)
    2 Tauruses (one was a Sable)
    2 Escapes (a 2014 and a 2020)
    5 Focuses (my 2013 manual SE, my mom and brother had a 2017 PS SE and a 2017 PS SE, dad had a 2011, mom had a 2010)
    1 Focus ST
    1 F-150
    2 Rangers

    • 0 avatar

      Either you had a big family or you went through cars very quickly.

      • 0 avatar

        It’s the latter. My personal average length of ownership is atrocious, but I’m working on changing it. Helps that there’s less and less for sale that catches my eye in any meaningful sense. We went through a period where there were 2 or 3 of us rocking substantially similar cars.

        • 0 avatar

          @tankinbeans: Heh. I’m pretty much the opposite. Admittedly the shortest times I ever owned a vehicle were my first two cars (even then about 2 years each, despite being the most I could afford and in constant need of repairs (diy at that)) was one year for an 86 (IIRC Buick LeSabre T-type due to a crash (my best loved car) and an 85 Toronado for 18 months when the engine stripped its nylon timing gear and forced a major repair I couldn’t afford (repair alone was $2k on a car not worth $5k on the open market while I owned it.) Nearly all the rest have been 5 years or longer and over the last 25 years it’s been an average of 10 years each, buying brand new instead of used.

          Simply put, my luck with used cars has been atrocious and I’ve actually saved money by buying new instead.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Whenever I think of the shoebox Fords I think of the Robert Mitchum movie Thunder Road where he was a bootlegger and drove a souped-up black 1950 Ford two-door sedan,(which was later repainted gray) with a custom tank in the back for moonshine liquor and a Ford V8 with three two barrel carburetors, but after a run in with the law, it was sold and replaced with a 1957 Ford Fairlane 500 two-door sedan with the same alterations excluding the carburetors. Mitchum’s character was later killed.

  • avatar

    Over the course of 80 years, my family has owned a total of only 5 Fords.
    • 40s convertible (don’t know model name;
    • 73 Gran Torino
    • 78 LTD II
    • 90 F-150
    • 97 Ranger

    The LTD II was in the family the shortest amount of time, despite being purchased brand-new (like the Gran Torino.) The Torino treated them so well that when they traded their old (relative) second car off, they bought the LTD II thinking it would take the Torino’s place as primary car. Less than a year later, they traded it for a Buick because it was almost the exact opposite of the Gran Torino, despite carrying the same engine and essentially the same platform. No power, no economy and no reliability. The Gran Torino stayed in the family 19 years and was the best Ford we ever owned… and was to the point of breaking down one way or another on a weekly basis by the end of that time, despite every effort to keep it going.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    Yes Mitchum did sing the theme song and the actor who played his younger brother was in real life his son.

    • 0 avatar

      Thanx ! .

      I saw that movie in 1968 or so, I wish I could find it on TCM or something…


      • 0 avatar

        @-Nate: Check some of the streaming services like Netflix or Amazon Prime. If you have access, you might also try AppleTV. I’ve got a copy myself but I honestly don’t remember where I bought it.

        • 0 avatar

          The problem here is two fold :

          #1 I prefer reading to watching T.V. .

          #2 for me to hear the T.V.has to be turned up so loud everyone else in the house gets pissed off….

          Hopefully some day Kaiser will offer Cochlear surgery .


  • avatar

    My great-great uncle founded the Ford agency in our little Ohio River town. It’s still there, 106 years later. He got a better freight rate on the railroad that ran on the other side of the river, so his Model Ts were delivered, for a while, to the wharf at the foot of the street by steamboat. There weren’t a lot of other vehicles on the roads other than Fords then. So this is a Ford town and my family is a Ford family. My grandparents started out with Model Ts and my uncle still has one. They are fun to drive for a few minutes at a time, but it’s hard to imagine this was the way people got around for a few decades.

    My first couple Fords were hand-me-downs:

    1962 Fairlane, 221 V8
    1965 Fairlane Sport Coupe, red, 289 V8 (I learned to drive in this car, age 12)
    1969 F100 Ranger, long bed, 360 w/ 3 on the tree

    Cars I bought with my own money:

    1966 Mustang convertible, 200-6, rusty and sold for following
    1967 Mustang GT/A Fastback, S-code 390
    1969 Ford XL GT Convertible, metallic turquoise w white C-stripes, white interior, bucket seats and console
    1975 Mustang II Ghia, 2.3L + 4-speed

    I took a 15 year break from Fords in favor of Honda cars and Toyota trucks. Told myself I’d get another Ford when they were quality vehicles again. Then:

    2000 Ranger Super Cab, 3.0L 5-speed
    2013 Fusion SE, 1.6L GTDI and 6-speed manual, every option available on the SE: tech, driver assist, luxury, and nav packages.

    The Ranger was my daily for 16 years, the most reliable vehicle I have ever had of any brand. It not only never broke, it never even threw a check engine light. The Fusion may be the best sedan Ford ever made. Handling has been augmented with Koni street shocks and struts and Pirelli P Zero tires but otherwise is stock. Comfortable, quiet, great handling, and excellent fuel mileage. And Ford replaced the clutch for us at 80K on a pressure plate recall, which affected every manual Fusion built: all 2200 of them. Out of 1.1 million second-gen Fusions built, this one is a fun unicorn. I have no idea what I’ll replace it with. Maybe a Bronco?

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