At $4,500, Could This 1986 Ford LTD Wagon Have Unlimited Appeal?

Illustration for article titled At $4,500, Could This 1986 Ford LTD Wagon Have Unlimited Appeal?
Photo: Craigslist
Nice Price Or No DiceIs this used car a good deal? You decide!

Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe LTD comes with an underwhelming 3.8 V6 under its hood, but as the seller helpfully points out, there’s room there for the 5.0 V8. That is an appealing aspiration, but will its current price put it out of reach?

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There’s no shame in being basic. Seriously, having a station in life that’s considered entry-level means bringing pleasure to a broader swath of an ever-more appreciative populace. No, there’s no shame in being a lesser light, but as evidenced by the comments on yesterday’s non-turbo, automatic-equipped 1993 Nissan 300ZX convertible, perhaps there should be.

Not much love was thrown at that slusher Z with the awkward doffing chapeau. There was, however, something about it that more than a few of you did like. That’s was its $3,985 asking, which 58 percent of you felt was a decent deal, earning the car a Nice Price win. That made for a twist ending worthy of a Twilight Zone episode—bad car makes good.

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Do you think about the future much? You know, hopes and dreams, the whole nine yards and all? I feel that aspiration for a better tomorrow is what originally gave humankind a desire for an afterlife. That’s the aspirational idea that, while things may be particularly craptastical right now, once I just croak I’ll be able to finally get around to all that fun stuff I’ve been putting off.

Illustration for article titled At $4,500, Could This 1986 Ford LTD Wagon Have Unlimited Appeal?

Speaking of fun stuff and the future, take a gander at this 1986 Ford LTD wagon. It comes to us wearing what appears to be a coat of factory maroon over a color-coordinated mouse fur interior. It also presents with what is by today’s standards a fairly insipid drivetrain. Oh, don’t get me wrong, when this car was brand-spankin’ new, it’s 3.8-litre Essex V6 was one of the latest components in Ford’s arsenal. An odd 90° design, the Canadian-built Essex was one of Ford’s first North American sixes to offer fuel injection.

That gave the Essex 120 horsepower initially, a number that would eventually grow as later iterations gained port injection and eventually supercharging. Behind this as-yet un-risen dough of an engine is Ford’s reasonably solid but equally uninspiring four-speed AOD automatic.

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Illustration for article titled At $4,500, Could This 1986 Ford LTD Wagon Have Unlimited Appeal?

Here’s the thing though, as pointed out in the ad, this LTD is little more than a re-skinning of Ford’s Fairmont and that car was the first iteration of the now-famous Fox platform that underpinned much of the Blue Oval’s product line throughout the Eighties. To this day, that platform hosts a solid market for lots of go-faster parts.

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This wagon already rocks a set of Mustang GT wheels under its ruby-red arches. There’s a lot more from that pony car’s parts catalog that will bolt right in here too, including brake and suspension upgrades, and the extremely desirable 5.0 venerated in both lore and song. Hell, the seller even has a ton of parts—including that just mentioned five-point-oh—that could be added to the sale of the car.

I guess we’d first have to determine whether this LTD is a good basis for their inclusion.

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Illustration for article titled At $4,500, Could This 1986 Ford LTD Wagon Have Unlimited Appeal?

The bodywork looks to be solid and very ‘80s. This was the era of Ford’s jello mold styling trope, and while the LTD was an attempt to bring some aero style to the upright Fairmont body, you can imagine how old school this looked on dealers floors parked next to the contemporary Taurus wagon. Now it just looks old school. Tinted windows and those Mustang wheels do dress it up, however.

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The interior is a mixed bag. The seats and door cards look to be in fine shape, with no tears or major stains evident. The plastic bits in here, however, do show their age. The Fox-body interiors from this era weren’t the best, but at least this car’s dash was shared with the contemporary T-bird so you have a fun-fact about it to tout at parties.

Illustration for article titled At $4,500, Could This 1986 Ford LTD Wagon Have Unlimited Appeal?
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The car carries what’s claimed to be an amazingly low 31,000 miles, a number that’s slowly increasing since the seller says it’s used for daily driver duty. With that low of mileage and a seemingly solid and rot-free uni-body, this might just be a fun basis for a fun car. Maybe you don’t want all the upgrade parts the seller is also offering, as there’s no rush to start switching things out. There are parts catalogs filled with lovely, shiny new bits that will bolt right on here. There are also classifieds across the country filled with donor cars to bring this LTD’s performance up to snuff. As they say, the world is your oyster, and this LTD is ready to belly up to the bar.

Illustration for article titled At $4,500, Could This 1986 Ford LTD Wagon Have Unlimited Appeal?
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To do so, however, you’d need to come up with the seller’s $4,500 asking. That’s what it will take to make this clear-title car your own. You could add to that whatever is being asked for the five-litre V8 and other goodies additionally offered, but right now we’ll focus on the car itself.

What do you think, is this old school LTD worth that kind of cash considering its potential? Or, is this Ford wagon limited in more than just name?

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You decide!

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Dallas, TX Craigslist, or go here if the ad disappears.

H/T to FauxShizzle for the hookup!

Help me out with NPOCP. Hit me up at rob@jalopnik.com and send me a fixed-price tip. Remember to include your Kinja handle.

Rob Emslie is a contributing writer for Jalopnik. He has too many cars, and not enough time to work on them all.

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DISCUSSION

At this price, the swap already needs to be done. CP.