They used to say the sun never sets on the British Empire. Today's Nice Price or Crack Pipe Custom Country Squire appears to be another British conquest, but has its price been set empirically too high?
Yesterday's 1974 Custom 240d Ute garnered a ton of praise in the comments - a number of you indicating that you'd be tempted even to buy the beast, were it not on a different side of the continent, and requiring of real money. Strange thing then that the vote went 64% Crack Pipe, obviously indicating that the pods had hatched in between commenting and voting.
That of course is a reference to Don Siegel's ode to paranoia, Invasion of the Body Snatchers. If you happen to have seen Phillip Kaufman's San Francisco set remake, then an image potentially burned into your memory is that of the dog - born from a damaged pod - which has a man's bearded face. Creepers, plus there's banjo music.
Today's custom 1971 Country Squire has been similarly re-faced, its noble eagle beaked prow now carrying not just that of a Rolls Royce Silver Shadow, but also the hopes and dreams of the British Empire. Well, maybe that's going overboard a little bit, but the same could be said about this claimed one-of-eight custom Rolls-aping wagon, as the attempt at deception runs deep. In fact, the lengths that have been reached in adding some facet of the British luxury car maker's mojo to the big Ford are impressive, and a testament to the free-wheeling pharmaceutical experimentation that went on in the late sixties.
The seller describes this beast as a shooting brake - and that may be the case if you happen to have a large family of gun nuts, as typically that describes a relatively compact two-door wagon. This being originally, at minimum, a six passenger ride - with enough load space in back for a small armory - makes a bit of a mockery of that claim. What it does have is natty two-tone paint, an a-pillar spot lamp, and faux wire wheels with RR centers. It's also probably one of the nicest Squires you'll find regardless of all the Britification.
Both the nice condition and the stiff upper lip-ness continues inside where a lovely plank of real wood and chrome-bezel instruments have replaced Ford's plastic fantastic strip speedo and festive idiot light dashboard. The seats and door panels have likewise seen attention, and now sport what is probably Connolly leather in elegant black with red piping. While the exterior looks like something a drunken Dr. Moreau might conjure up, the interior actually appears as nice and inviting as an English sitting room. Plus it's as cavernous as Albert Hall. Over all, it comes across like Jeremy Clarkson doing his most debasing American accent.
While it may look like a Rolls, it probably doesn't roll like a Rolls, the Parthenonic grille fronting not that brand's six and three quarters V8, but instead a freshly installed 400-cid edition of Ford's venerable Cleveland Show. That engine was the largest small block (jumbo shrimp?) that FoMoCo offered, and despite being about 200-ccs smaller than the British unit, it should also put out power that's more than just adequate. A C6 three-speed sends power rearward, while the A-arm front/leaf spring rear suspension probably still provides this Country Squire with a ride equatable to that of another British icon - the Queen Mary.
This car is all about visual presence though, and as such it's that odd discovery that, while obviously Ford from most angles, it certainly will pass for a Rolls from others. Still, that face remains strangely incongruous attached to the body of the low and long Ford wagon. Of course, It would have been the perfect ironic ride for either John Travolta or freakshow on wheels Nick Cage, in John Woo's epic, Face Off. Or, barring that, you could always just use it to piss off transplants from old Blighty.
That stuffy Britishness stands in stark contrast to the Ford wagon's American suburbia vibe, and that is why this car is so great. You see, despite a claimed appraised value of $45,000, the asking price for this custom is $32,900. You'd be likely to spend $15,000 each for either a ‘71 Country Squire or Silver Shadow that is in such nice condition, while here you get both, and that extra $2,900 seems a fair price for the trouble of stitching them together.
But that's just my opinion, and ironically, I don't get a vote. You do however, and so now that we've gotten all my baloney out of the way, it's time for you to determine this Country Roller's fate. What do you think of this well preserved Rollsquire for $32,900? Is that a deal? Or, does that price put the cuss in custom?
H/T to haventech for the hookup!
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lede photo: Hemmings.com