Of course we all love the cars-with-truck-beds that GM and Ford sold in the 1960s, but we often forget that they kept making them for quite a while after (and, in fact, still make them down in Mad Max Land). Ford continued building Rancheros for the American market until 1979, and that's the year this two-tone Alameda beauty was sold.
The '77 through '79 Rancheros were based on the same platform as the high-flying Thunderbird and had an extremely, uh, distinctive front end.
The bed of the '79 was nice and roomy, and I'm disappointed to say that this one has no engine parts, beer cans, or bales of hay in it.
This cartruck would look so much nicer if the owner would just replace that missing dogdish! This Ranchero lives on one of the busiest streets in town, just down the street from the mall, so it's likely that many passersby lament the missing dogdish just as much as I do.
The stacked quad headlights and plastic snout really scream "Late 70s Ford" to the world. And that's a good thing.
The two-tone beige-and-maroon paint job is likewise quite 70s; this one just needs to have the Bondo patches painted in order to look pretty much original. I couldn't find any rust on it.
Unfortunately, this car is too new to be smog-exempt, so there's not much you could (legally) do to improve on the 151-horse 351; your best bet would be to swap in a later 5.0 and get the BAR referee to OK it.