Warehouse Wonder: 1974 Ford Thunderbird 13K Survivor – Sold?

by | Apr 2023 | Craigslist ClassiFINDS, Malaise Monday

(To stop the slideshow and expand the pictures, click on the current photograph below)

April 24, 2023, Update – While this “Classifind” expired recently, given the seller’s history, we suspect it may not actually be sold yet.  For now, we’re labeling this ride “Sold?” However, we will keep an eye out for an updated listing. In the interim, please reach out either by email or call Rudy directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.

If you’re into Malaise Era, two-door personal luxury Land Yachts but are on a budget, we recommend looking for a sixth-generation Ford Thunderbird produced from 1972 to 1976. In many respects, the sixth-generation Ford Thunderbird (known in TBird circles as the “Big Bird” era) was nothing more than a slightly decontented Lincoln Continental Mark V.  That’s not much of a stretch, as both cars shared the same platform and were built on the same assembly line during this era.

A prime example is this Blue 1974 Ford Thunderbird for sale in March 2023 on Craigslist in Falconer, New York (Buffalo).  Reported to be a warehouse find with only 13K original miles, the latest set of pictures highlights a car that appears to be in well-preserved, like new condition. With a matching leather interior, desirable four-barrel-topped 460 cubic inch V8, and a rare factory-installed moonroof, this Thunderbird provides all the size and luxury of a Continental Mark IV for less money.

Funny story about this particular Thunderbird.  When selecting Craigslist ads to feature in our ClassiFINDS sections, we try to be very picky, relying on ads with at least one great picture that will draw interest. We’ve watched this car linger for sale for nearly two years now.  The pictures used up until this point, however, were not at all flattering.  Now that they have much better pictures in their ad, we’re hopeful this Big Bird will finally find a new home.

Last offered for $10,975, Classic.com, the analytics and search engine for the collector car market, confirms the ask is below the one-year rolling average of this guide’s summary for sixth-generation Ford Thunderbirds produced between 1972 and 1976.  We also note that collectors are starting to catch on as prices for this generation of Thunderbirds are on the rise.  By clicking on the green dots in the graph below, you can navigate to each comparable car sold as a way to help you evaluate the price of the truck featured here:

As a second data point, the  Collector Car Market Review Online Tool reveals the seller’s ask falls between this guide’s #2 Very Good” estimate of $8,000 and its #1 “Excellent” appraisal of $12,700 before factoring in a seven percent add for the rare factory moonroof.

The sixth generation of the Thunderbird debuted in the fall of 1971 as a 1972 model. With a 120.4-inch wheelbase, an overall length of 225 inches, and a curb weight of nearly five thousand pounds when equipped with a 460 cu in, it was the largest Thunderbird ever produced by Ford.  Not surprising given the fact Ford produced the sixth-generation Thunderbird on the same assembly line as the Lincoln Continental Mark IV of the period.

Though offering two of the largest displacement V8 engines ever installed in a production vehicle by Ford, the sixth-generation Thunderbird’s considerable weight combined with low power output caused by restrictive emissions technology resulted in modest performance. As might also be expected from installing a large-displacement V8 in a heavy car, fuel efficiency was poor.

The “Big Bird” sixth-generation Thunderbirds proved popular, with sales peaking at over 87,000 units in 1973 in spite of the oil crisis. However, quickly changing tastes, motivated largely by gas availability and prices, saw sales slip to less than 43,000 by 1975.

The Classic Car YouTube Channel features this 1974 Ford Thunderbird Commercial:

We’re optimistic for the seller that the improved photography combined with a realistic asking price will finally encourage someone to purchase this 13K-mile Ford Thunderbird for sale.

If you are serious about buying this Thunderbird, you can start the conversation by contacting the seller using the information provided in their Craigslist ad.  When you connect, please remember to mention you saw their restored pickup featured here on GuysWithRides.com. Good luck with the purchase!

Here’s the seller’s description:

“This beautiful 1974 original thunderbird is for sale. 460 v-8 4-barrel carb. All original still has stickers on the engine. This car is a warehouse find and has been in storage most of its life. Show 13,227 miles on the odometer and is believed to be accurate. This car has no rust, wear, or damage. Power windows, locks, and a large moonroof that work great. Original am/fm stereo. Tbird has a blue exterior with a white vinyl top. The Interior is in amazing condition, with untouched blue leather seating and shag carpeting without a blemish. This is one of the nicest original cars you will ever find. Text/call with questions or for an appointment to view.”

Show or go: What would you do with this 1974 Ford Thunderbird survivor for sale?  Please comment below and let us know!


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