Find of the Week: 1979 Ford LTD Landeau

The Find of the Week isn't something flashy, or something ultra rare when new, or even something that most people would call all that cool. But to us, this is something special. This car is one of the more tasteful offerings to come from its era, an era that's generally unloved. Even more importantly, it's one that's survived in what appears to be excellent condition. It's a 1979 Ford LTD Landeau that'll take you right back to the automotive landscape of decades past. When fuel was nearly free and you could cruise for days in a yacht like this for just a few dollars.

When the LTD range was first launched, it was the highest trim for Ford's full-size sedans. That was 1965, back when full-size meant gargantuan. The very first LTD was a list of upscale features attached to the Galaxie 500, though for 1963 it became something a bit more separate from that now-midrange model. Over the years, it would see some slight styling differentiations to set the LTD apart from lesser versions.

For the second-generation, it was more of the same, though in later years, Ford started to expand the LTD line to have different trim levels inside this one model line. Back when there were only a handful of manufacturers, and no crossovers, you could have 10 versions of essentially the same sedan.

In 1978, an all-new version arrived. GM had started the trend to downsize its full-sizers, and Ford followed suit with the 1979 LTD. It was now on a much smaller and lighter platform called Panther, which Ford would use until the end of the Crown Victoria in 2011.

The ungainly styling of the previous-gen was replaced with boxy styling that most Fords would use for the 1980s, but we think that it has aged very well, especially when compared with the older models.

This car, for sale in Combermere, west of Ottawa, is special for a few reasons. For a start, it's an LTD Landeau, the top trim of LTD for the first year of this new generation. That trim was sold only that year, replaced for 1980 by the LTD Crown Victoria. Eventually, Crown Victoria would become the model, much the same way that LTD replaced Galaxie 500.

Landeau meant more than just the full vinyl roof for these cars. The trim also included that knit cloth and vinyl front bench seat, an electric clock, extra courtesy lights, special chrome grille, and, of course, exterior coach lamps, along with some other trim and finish changes.

This one has the big engine, the 5.8L Windsor V8. That means somewhere around 140 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque, with that power sent through a three-speed automatic. But this is about cruising, not going fast, and there's plenty of torque for that.

With just 131,000 km on the odometer, this Ford LTD is ready for you to sink into that blue bench seat, fire up the V8, and let it woofle you back in time. With enough space in the trunk to embarrass a host of crossovers.


This is something special. 12/18/2019 3:12:22 PM