14,000 Miles From New: 1975 Ford Pinto

Economy cars of today are often broken, battered and forgotten. But will we swoon over a low mileage Kia 30 years from now? Who knows (I won’t), but this 1975 Ford Pinto wagon should make most of us give it a second look. Wearing only 14,000 miles from new, this preserved Pinto here on craigslist is listed for $12,500 in the Detroit metro area. 

$13K is a fair chunk of change for a Pinto, even with the impressively low mileage. However, Pintos in near-factory condition like this one are on the rise, like this amazing 1979 example coming up for auction at Mecum in Portland this June. Sometimes, a car isn’t collectible because it’s rare or sporting a hi-po motor – sometimes, it’s just a changing tide of perception towards a certain, once-maligned, model. The seller bought this Pinto from the original owner in 2015 and has kept it nicely preserved ever since.

This particular example is powered by a four-cylinder paired to an automatic. The six cylinder models are a bit more desirable, and the smaller engine could hold this wagon back from getting the seller’s preferred top dollar. The seller draws an illogical comparison to a Shelby Mustang of the same vintage going for big bucks (some sort of reference to the Pinto being undeserving of its cheap car pricing?) but it is clear that this is one of the best examples on the market right now, with untorn blue seats and door panels and a perfect dash pad.

The seller contends this Mustang belongs in a museum, and we’re inclined to agree. However, finding a museum willing to spend $12,500 on a Pinto wagon will take some time, most likely, as will finding an enthusiast passionate enough about Pintos to justify a five-figure price tag. Our feeling is the seller is outpacing the market a bit with this ask, but it could potentially be a deal at $8K or thereabouts. Now, a cruising wagon on the other hand….

Fast Finds

Comments

  1. JimmyJ

    Wow big bucks!
    I hate to say it but it needs a 302 i remember in high school v8 pintos and vegas were the cheap go fast.
    I guy i went to school with had a v8 pinto and the thing was crazy fast ond day driving into town a drove by an accident site and there was pinto shrapnel for as far as the eye could see im talking tiny pieces everywhere i figured he was dead for sure but somehow the lucky bastard walked away!

  2. Will

    Great looking car. To bad about the front and back porches on it. I think bumpers like these were the manufacturers way of flipping off the public that sought the 5 mph bumper legislation. To see where bumper design went between 72 and 75 leads me to believe that they were simply the manufacturers temper tantrum over regs they didn’t like, in hopes that the public would hate them enough to demand repeal.

  3. Pookie Jamie P

    Museum quality huh? Well the car is in Detroit, so why not put it on loan at the Henry Ford Museum.? It’s right around the corner. Then sell it. Give it some cred to get the money he wants.

  4. Craig MacDonald

    In one of the pics of the back seat area you can see a CB antenna laying to the side and a dash photo shows a mount for the microphone. That suggests the antenna was mounted somewhere on the body. Hole drilled??

    • redwagon

      flipped through the pictures quickly and did not see a cb antenna – but i likely missed it. what i really wanted to say was that cb antenna did not have to be hole drilled permanently mounted. it was possible to get magnetic mount cb antennas. they were somewhat popular for those who did not want to drill into their car. another less known reason for a magnetic mount antenna was to maintain flexibility in the directionality of their cb signal.

      the car itself helped act as part of the antenna so that a rear mounted antenna would project signal more towards the front of the vehicle. mounting the antenna in the middle of the roof resulted in a more unidirectional pattern. with a magnetic antenna one could position it to more easily accommodate who one wanted to contact. coming home from a long trip? place it towards the rear to enhance a forward range. leaving home? place the antenna towards the front of the car to enhance a rearward range.

      the best platform for a cb antenna was a flat metal plane. that meant vans and station wagons were ideal cb platforms – although in my minds eye i still see lots of vans with cb antennas permanently mounted onto large sideview mirrors completely negating their flat roof advantage.

  5. Howard A Member

    Yeah, that price is a bit of a shock to me, as well. I mean, what will it be, a ’63 T-bird or a ’75 Pinto? The seller is clearly banking on the non-availability of ’75 Pinto wagons. Being the eternal pessimist ( thanks dad) I think somebody detailed the heck out of an already clean car, but I’m sorry, the motor just doesn’t look like low mileage. ( and the CB antenna and cobbled wiring and torn carpet doesn’t help) I highly doubt it has 114, but maybe. If this person gets what they’re asking, and there’s every indication they will, ( and a $12,000 Pinto is a perfect example) then I’m out of the classic car hobby for good.

  6. dirtyharry

    There is a collector market for all this #$%^*&. List your name and address, if you love the pinto, bobcat, Vega and corvair wagon. As soon as money for mental health care is available, we can send help.

    • Miguel

      What do you have against Pintos? I can see a problem with Vegas as they were junk at the dealership, but Pintos were very dependable cars.

      I have had a lot of them and there isn’t a weak spot I can think of.

      Now with that being said, we liked these cars because they were cheap and ran forever.

      12K for a Pinto I don’t think will happen.

  7. hearsetrax

    gotta love these old pintos, even when they are over priced and virgin

    but hes pullin numbers out of his (_|_)

  8. rdc

    Looks great. However, even if I was given this car I would flip it as fast as possible. Just absolutely no interest.

    • Howard A Member

      Hi rdc, I believe that’s exactly what’s happening here. The seller is clearly going for the big dollar here, and I can’t really blame them, but wouldn’t it be nice, if this car was say, $3 or $4 grand, and a young family could enjoy it. If I was given this car, or got it cheap, as I’m sure someone did, that’s what I’d do.

  9. Ford crazy

    Although it is a very clean car, it is definitely not a 14,000 mile car. Just look at the engine compartment. Filthy.

    I strongly suspect it was owned by an older person ( why it’s so clean inside) with a garage (why the exterior is so preserved) who drove it regularly. And the mileage is 114,000 based on how the engine compartment looks..

    Still low mileage but definitely over priced. 7-8k car tops to the right person

  10. Danno

    Had one of these, with faux wood paneling, when I was a kid. The old man never bought another Ford because of it.

  11. Jay M

    An amazing great example of an amazingly bad car.
    What’s with the fascination of these forgettable cars on this site?
    These were a low cost disposable car when new, and time has not improved them any.

  12. Warren

    12.5k. lol.

  13. grant

    We say we won’t swoon over low mileage Kias in 30 years, but did we ever think we’d swoon over a low mileage Pinto’s and Toyota’s?

  14. Coventrycat

    If we’re swooning over low mileage Pintos and Cavaliers now, Kias and whatever we’re deeming disposable – and at the prices cars are today, none are – will be gracing Barn Finds, but I’ll be way, way too old then to care.

  15. LAB3

    As it sits today “classic” econo cars are a bit of a joke, so was the idea of a Chevy II or Falcon at some time in the past. It’s hard to say what will be popular at some point in the future and this car may come into it’s own someday, today isn’t that day!

  16. JW

    I wouldn’t mind this Pinto but for half his asking price and it wouldn’t stay a 4 banger / auto long.

  17. DrinkinGasoline

    The asking price is lofty but reality is….it’s sadly worth about 4k at bottom end. The market just doesn’t bare this Ford offering as of yet.

  18. KevinR

    Nice job of drilling a non-removable piece of the dashboard for the microphone holder… The radio mounting plate would have been a much better choice. I was thinking $5000 tops, and only for someone who has a soft spot in their memory for a Pinto wagon.

  19. larry

    DrinkinGasoline, whats your professional opinion of this one?

  20. irocrob

    Nice car for doing garage sails but about twice what it is worth.

  21. glen

    For the money,I’d rather by a new car with full warranty.

  22. R. Rollins

    Looks like a lot of Pinto haters providing their 2 cents, so I’ll provide mine. I currently own a 1974 Pinto Wagon that I bought very used in August 1981. My high school car, my college car, & my knockaround, can’t kill car ever since. I’ve bought numerous other vehicles since then, but for some reason, have never been able to part with this car. It’s awaiting an engine transplant, (had the original 2000 cc German Ford 4 cylinder rebuilt.) This car has been solidly reliable, economical, & easy to own & drive for over 36 years for me & has been towed 2 times in the time that I’ve owned it. Once back on the road, it will soon be turning either 300,000 or 400,000 miles on the odometer, can’t say for sure, because the odo had flipped at least once by the time I acquired.
    There are obviously many skeptics out there, but I would match my experience up with any Toyota, Honda, Nissan (Datsun) or domestic brand loyalists out there. When your car meets this benchmark, feel free to brag on it as I do.

    • jess

      My wife’s 97 Expedition had 397,000 miles on its 6 digit odometer when we sold it to a neighbor…. He’s a painter and now uses it to haul his tools around… Last time I spoke with him it had 424,000

      Original engine and transmission…. Maintenance is key!

    • rdc

      Good for you. I like high mileage survivors.

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