I just drove by a school to see if it would frighten small children. Sure enough. I revved the engine at a stoplight to see if modern muscle cars would cower in fear. Sure enough. You could see the fear in their eyes. This is the kind of car their mothers warned them about! It’s a 1969 Ford Torino GT and with its sunburnt paint and throaty rumble, it has some serious street presence. It may look well-worn, but it is still ready for battle and we are excited to have it as our newest Barn Finds project car! Yesterday we spent the day hunting around for a new project and were very excited to stumble upon this…
This Ford was purchased as a father and son restoration project, but beside having a mechanic address a few issues, they never got around to doing anything with it. Realizing that life wasn’t ever going to slow down, the car was pulled out of storage and listed for sale locally. The price seemed reasonable and it drove well so we jumped on it. This Torino and I seem like a good match actually. If you were to compare my brother Josh to a Mustang, then I would be a Torino. We are both a little pudgier and less agile than our little brothers, but we can still get the job done. This Torino is probably the more athletic one though because it is fitted with the M-code 351 V8. That means it has a four-barrel carb and puts out a respectable 290 horsepower and 385 foot pounds of torque!
There were bigger engines available in 1969, but this particular combination seems like a nice mix of power and economy. It cruises well at high speeds and has enough power to chirp the tires at every launch. I would have preferred a four-speed, but the automatic was easy to accept once I drove the car and realized how good of shape it was actually in. The body is straight and we couldn’t find a single speck of cancerous rust. Even the batter tray is rust free! The front suspension needs some work and there are a few cosmetic items to sort out, but overall this car is in great condition. Some people will hate the scruffy exterior, but I think the faded paint adds character. Luckily the interior is nice and clean so it’s easy to get over the outside once you’re inside.
When it comes to Torinos most people think of the fastback body style, but our car is a rare pillarless hardtop. It doesn’t look as sporty, but it’s actually lighter and personally I prefer the shape. It’s a car you don’t see everyday and I have a feeling that with a little work, it will cause quite a stir at just about any local car show or cruise. It’s well optioned and even has an A/C condenser and under dash controller thrown in the trunk that a previous owner sourced for the car. We have plenty of projects to work through on this one and plan to feature each of them here on the site. So, besides the obvious, what do you think we should do to our Torino?