1979 Lincoln Continental Collector Series

Whatever floats your boat is an old saying that could refer to this beautiful 1979 Lincoln Continental Collector Series ultra-luxury sedan. This giant cruiser can be found here on craigslist in Portland, Oregon. The seller, a dealer, is asking $3,999 for this big, beautiful Lincoln. Let’s check it out.

I have been a wicked huge fan of the Lincoln Continental for decades, a lot of us have been. While most of us gravitate towards two-door vehicles, which in Lincoln’s case would be a Continental Mark series, I’ve always preferred the sedan version of the Lincoln Continental. If you’re going to get a luxury car, you may as well have one that can be used as a limousine. Who wants to scramble and scrunch into the back seat of a two-door Lincoln? Not me, give me a driver and a Lincoln Continental any day and let me sit in the back seat for once. As someone who drives 40,000+ miles a year, that would be such a luxury.

The oil crisis was a big deal in the early-1970s, those of us who lived through it remember it with shock and awe. The resulting spawn of small vehicles made by US automakers (think: Pinto, Gremlin, Vega, etc.) and also the influx of imports wreaked havoc on the big American cars that most buyers owned and loved. Carmakers downsized their vehicles to try to meet new regulations and new demands from consumers who wanted more MPG. This Lincoln Continental hung on for many years, maybe too long? Given the MPG numbers that manufacturers needed to please both the government and consumers, it’s amazing that this 19.5-foot-long car held on as long as it did.

The rare Collector Series Lincoln Continental marked the end of this run of classic/traditional “big” Lincolns, they’re fairly rare to see today. One of only four options was a Kashmir blue velour interior but this one has blue leather. Look at those rear seats! Wow, now this is luxury, 1970s style – beautiful. The front passenger compartment is just as luxurious and this entire car appears to be in fantastic condition. The seller doesn’t mention the condition and normally I’d be worried about rust on a 40-year-old vehicle, but given the Pacific Northwest location, I’m hoping for the best. I don’t see any glaring issues, at least from the 24 great photos that the seller has provided. Kudos to them for giving us a wide variety of images, that rarely happens anymore.

I love but am confused whenever I see the black-painted grape juice cans in cars of this era. You’d think that manufacturers could have come up with something a little more bespoke for what was one of the most luxurious cars in the US in that era. There is surface rust showing on some components under the hood, which is filled to the brim with a 400 cubic-inch, 160-hp V8. They say that it runs and drives great and with a little detailing this whole car could look like new again. Have any of you owned a fifth-generation Lincoln Continental?

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Comments

  1. SaabVertGuy

    Owned a ’77 Continental for a while. Brown leather interior and a 460 V8. Loved the sliding bar speedo along with the sheer comfort the interior and ride afforded me. A true land yacht. Only paid $100 for it back in the early ’90’s and certainly wish I still had it today.

    Like 7
  2. Chris Hahn

    The last of the real Lincolns, after this they were rebadged Fords with little distinction from the rest of the FOMOCO line

    Like 9
    • Jay

      What’s so annoying is that Ford’s and Mercury’s had the exact same steering wheel. Our 77 Country Squire had one like that but with Ford emblazoned on it. At least GM autos had distinct steering wheels to differentiate their models.

  3. BarnfindyCollins

    This looks like a nice one and the price is too! I still recall the time my father and I went to an antique show in his ’79 Cadillac Fleetwood and another dealer wanted to show us some items in the trunk of his Lincoln Continental. I was seriously empressed with the depth of that trunk space. Yes the grape juice vacuum can! Our big Wagoneer had a peanut can sized one. It did the job , is that American ingenuity or adaptive reuse? You decide.

    Like 7
  4. ken tillyUK

    Just where in hell did they find those horrible bumpers? A really nice Lincoln ruined in a big way. I have just watched the latest Martin Scorsese film “The Irishman” on Netflix and if you haven’t yet watched it, and love old American cars, then make sure you do. The main character, played by Robert DeNiro drives a Lincoln. There are lots of other beautiful cars from the 30’s upwards, and all are incredible. It’s a three and a half hour movie but worth watching for every minute.

    Like 11
  5. canadainmarkseh Member

    The juice can is a vacuum resivour or you might call it an accumulator it’s function is to maintain a constant vacuum signal for interior controls. Engine vacuum fluctuates drastically and so would the climate controls if it weren’t for this can. The car is a total beauty and is selling for a song. These had poor mileage because they were so detuned, with tame cams, EGR systems, lowered compression ratios and on and on. A 400cid engine should have way more then 160hp. And there things that can be done to get the horse power up. More horse power mean less gas pedal. This cars worth buying just for the seats and the floating ride your never going to get out of a new SUV.

    Like 10
  6. Tony Primo

    Wow, about 56 cents a pound. What a bargain.

    Like 7
  7. Tracy

    The era when Detroit made the largest engines with the smallest HP.

    Like 5
  8. Tracy

    I’d buy this car except it’s in Portland and I’m in NC. It would cost 10k to drive it back!

    Like 3
    • Jack M.

      Just take your time driving back and chauffeur a few weddings along the way to make some gas money!

      Like 15
    • Rod K

      I had one with the 400. Got low 20’s on the highway. Not bad for such a big car. Loved it!

      Like 1
  9. P Wentzell

    Dang. I’m flying to Portland next month and my air fare is non-refundable.

    Like 6
    • Drake

      Did that just last September! From Kansas to Pennsylvania, then drove home!

  10. Rex Kahrs Member

    If this were closer I’d buy it in a New York minute. I love big boats and I cannot lie!

    Like 13
    • Mike

      I see what you did there lol!

      Like 1
  11. John M

    These were great cars, from 1970 to 1979 I had at least 2 new ones every year, all were Mark series except for 2 town cars. I always ordered them with sunroof or moonroof when they changed to glass
    The resale was so good I could drive them and get 100% of my money back
    I was worried about the power in the 79 when they downsized the eng but was pleasantly surprised as it seemed to have the same power but consistently got over 15mpg and I always drove them 80 to 90mph when on the hwy.

    Like 4
  12. Jim in FL

    I inherited my grandfather’s 78 town car. Such great vehicles, I drove his from FL to Philly a few times and like John, I got around 15 mpg consistently at 80+ on I95. This is a lot of car for very little money. Someone snap it up.

    My grandfather and I used to joke about these cars. The 2 door is the continental and the four door is the town car. But the continental would be better in town and the town car would be better if you’re driving across the continent.

    Like 2
  13. Kenneth Bucholz

    When I was 16, our next door neighbor was also My boss at a pool store where I worked. He ALWAYS had Lincoln land yachts. From the smallest errands, “take my car.” Here I am, 16 years old, driving around Cleveland like some pimp daddy. I felt like I should have had someone yelling out “port” and “starboard ” distances trying to navigate this behemoth. Beautiful car.

    Like 4
  14. Skippy

    What…no opera window? That is a deal breaker. My dad owned 6 or 7 of these, all the same color, kind of a dark hotwheels blue.

    Like 2
    • Chris in Ohio

      Skippy, I hear you. I cannot for the life of me understand why the Collector Series Town Cars did not have opera windows. That makes the car!

      Like 2
  15. Erik

    I had a 1976 Town Car and a 1979 Mark V. Both were dreadful cars. You didn’t feel connected to the road in any way (which I do understand was the point of these beasts), which made them a chore to drive. They were constantly meandering down the highway. The big Buick’s and Cadillacs of the time were dramatically better driving cars. I learned to drive in a 75 Electra Limited, and it felt like a sports car by comparison.

    I do love the looks of the last big Lincoln’s, and I have wondered if a retromod,with real suspension. Probably more trouble then it’s worth.

    Like 2
  16. Bill Hall

    For anyone interested, just for the Halibut last night I was perusing privately owned cars on the Portland Craigs list that would either be interesting projects or nice pieces for show or?

  17. Steven Dempsey

    Had a 78 back in the day. My favorite car of all time.

    Like 1
  18. Mike

    I’ve never owned a Lincoln, but, did look at a few 460 powered Marks when the wife and I were looking to build an interstate cruiser for weekend runs from Ohio to North Carolina and back to visit our twin grandsons. We’re 2 door people so a sedan of any kind was out of the question. We ended up buying a 75 Coupe DeVille instead. It’s powered by a warmed up 500/TH400 and has 2.73 gearing with a Detroit Locker. The main reason we bought the Cadillac instead of a Lincoln is that it was already black with a MINT black leather interior. We REALLY wanted black on black. It’s lowered a bit and has a lot of suspension work done so that it actually can turn corners while still giving a comfortable ride quality. Even though it has 500+ c.i. under the hood, and only a 3 speed trans, with the gear ratio, it consistently gets 14-15 m.p.g. on the interstate during those 1200+ mile round trips. It also does it with the cruise set at 85, the a/c turned up, and the stereo cranking out Quiet Riot singing Slick Black Cadillac!

  19. Miguel

    That is a lot of car for the money.

    Like 1

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