Faded Fabric: 1979 Ford Granada Coupe – SOLD!
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March 7, 2022, Update – We confirmed the seller of this “Classifind” deleted their listing, so we’re now able to call this one “SOLD!” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call us directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar
Throughout the late seventies, Ford tried to pitch their Granada as a lower-cost alternative to the very similar-looking Mercedes-Benz W123 they tried to mimic. While history proved the latter to be one of the best-built cars of all time, low mileage survivor Granadas such as this 69K original mile example originally listed in February 2022 on Craigslist in Hollywood, Florida are fast becoming rare sights on public roads. While the Florida climate appears to have been good for this car’s exterior, the same cannot be said for the green cloth interior, especially on the passenger side.
With an asking price of only $2,900, comparing that ask Collector Car Market Review Online Tool confirms the seller’s asking price is only fifty dollars higher than this guide’s #3 “Good” estimate of $2,850.
Ford produced the first generation its North American Granada from 1975 through 1982 and marketed the car as a luxury compact vehicle. While originally intended to replace the Ford Maverick, design work for the Ford Granada predated the 1973 fuel crisis. In 1969, Ford began research predicting the emergence of the luxury compact segment, driven by gasoline prices, multiple-vehicle families, and urban traffic. In 1970, Ford began design work on a prototype vehicle, later becoming the production Granada. In what would later become a central theme of the marketing of the Granada, Ford benchmarked the Mercedes-Benz 280 (W114), using it as a basis for styling and dimensions. As an alternative, Ford considered importing its European Granada, however that idea was too cost-prohibitive.
Following the 1973 U.S. Oil Embargo, Ford delayed the Granada’s introduction and redeveloped the car before its launch, becoming an additional compact model line. While not intended as a direct competitor for European luxury sedans (such as Mercedes-Benz or BMW), Ford intended for the Granada to be sold to buyers either downsizing from a larger intermediate or full-size car while wanting to retain the same comfort and convenience features along with buyers seeking to upgrade from a lower-content compact car.
In its most basic form, the Ford Granada offered few standard features over the Maverick (including manual steering, non-power brakes, and a column-shifted manual transmission). To allow for a high degree of owner customization, the options list for the Granada was long, adding many features traditionally included on the Ford Gran Torino and Ford LTD.
The Ford Granada relied on the 1960–1965 Ford Falcon rear-wheel-drive chassis that retained unibody construction combined with a coil-spring front suspension and a leaf-sprung live rear axle. Both versions of the Ford Granada have a 109.9-inch wheelbase, derived from the four-door Ford Maverick.
Ford equipped Granadas with a 200 cubic-inch inline-six engine as standard and a 250 cubic-inch inline-six as an optional engine. Shared with the Maverick, the 302 Windsor V8 was offered as an option; the 351 Windsor V8 was an option solely for the Granada. A three-speed manual (column-shifted or floor shifted) was standard, with a three-speed automatic offered as an option (standard on the 351 V8). A four-speed manual was introduced in 1976.
For 1978, the exterior of the Ford Granada underwent a mid-cycle revision, concentrating on the front fascia. In addition to a revised grille design, the round headlamps were replaced by rectangular units stacked above the turn signal lenses (to more closely match the design of the Ford LTD II and the Mercedes-Benz W114). The rear fascia was given revised taillamp lenses and revised center panel trim if optionally equipped. In the interest of aerodynamics, the side view mirrors were changed from rectangular to oval.
Here’s a YouTube link to one of Ford’s infamous commercials comparing how similar the Granada was to the Mercedes-Benz of the day:
With an asking price less under three large, this 1979 Ford Granada represents one of the cheapest ways to get into the collector car hobby.
Here’s the seller’s description:
“1979 Ford Granada coupe. only 69k.miles! New tires! New battery! Very good motor and transmission! Engine 6 cylinders inline! A/C is very cold! Automatic transmission! Clean inside! Runs and drives great! Clean title in hand.”
Do you have a Ford Granada story to share? If so, comment below and let us know!
The Granada’s (and Mercury Monarch’s) 1978 facelift was also intended to provide greater visual separation from the Granada/Monarch and the then-new Versailles, Lincoln’s late response to the ’76 Cadillac Seville.