5k Genuine Miles? 1978 Ford Country Squire Wagon

With Summer fast approaching, the temptation is there to load the family aboard a classic station wagon and attempt a cross-country journey à la, Clark Griswold, in National Lampoon’s Vacation. The inimitable Mr. Griswold tackled his “horror-day” in the legendary Wagon Queen Family Truckster, but you can hit the road in something far more attractive like this 1978 Ford Country Squire. This is a spotless survivor, and with the versatility of third-row seating, it can transport the larger family in style and comfort. The listing also indicates that the wagon has a genuine 5,000 miles on the clock, which could make it one of the lowest mileage examples in existence today. Located in Pacific, Washington, you will find this Ford listed for sale here on eBay. Bidding has already sailed past the reserve, and it currently sits at $5,100.

Thankfully, this Ford isn’t finished in Metallic Pea, like the Family Truckster. It wears an attractive shade called Dark Jade, and when teamed with the faux timber trim, it makes a striking combination. The paint looks spotlessly clean, with no evidence of any flaws or problems. The big news is the state of the timber that defines the appearance of the Country Squire. This adhesive vinyl can be prone to patchy deterioration and fading with long-term exposure to UV rays, but the trim on this wagon appears to be perfect. There are none of those problems, nor any prior repairs or accident damage. The chrome, including the optional roof rack, shines as impressively as the paint. The glass is clean and shows no damage, while the narrow whitewall tires add the perfect finishing touch to the exterior. Overall, the first impression that the Country Squire makes is pretty positive. It is sure to turn heads wherever it goes.

Frustratingly, the owner supplies no engine or interior photos of the Country Squire. We know that the drivetrain consists of a 351ci V8, a 3-speed C6 automatic transmission, a 2.50 Traction-Lok rear end, power steering, and power brakes. If potential buyers are expecting a muscle wagon with this Ford, they will probably be disappointed. This one rolled off the production line during The Malaise Era, which means that the 351 will be producing 145hp. Compounding the pain is the fact that the Country Squire tips the scales at a rather portly 4,746lbs. If someone runs over your foot in this baby, you’re sure to notice! Add all of those factors together, and you wind up with a wagon that strolls through the ¼ mile in 21.1 seconds. The wagon’s redeeming factor is that it will easily return a fuel consumption figure of more than 16 mpg, making it a practical long-distance cruiser. The owner doesn’t provide any information on how well the wagon runs or drives, but the listing does indicate an odometer reading of 5,000 miles. If that is accurate, it will go a long way towards explaining why the exterior presentation is so impressive. The interior is another unknown quantity. The only information we receive in the eBay listing is that it is upholstered in Jade Duraweave cloth. It is equipped with air conditioning, power windows, power locks, and the versatility of third-row seating. However, all is not lost with this one. I undertook a brief search and found a prior listing for the wagon here at Bring-A-Trailer. The vehicle sold in March of 2020, but that listing fills in many of the blanks for us. The supplied photos reveal an interior that is spotlessly clean and features an AM/FM radio/8-track player, a power front seat, cruise control, a tilt wheel, and a remote exterior mirror. That listing also indicates an odometer reading of 5,000 miles, so perhaps there is something to that claim.

The owner of this 1978 Ford Country Squire hasn’t done himself any favors with his listing, and I believe that he could pay a high price for that. Bidding has been modest to this point, and if I were the owner, I would probably be worried. If the BAT listing is correct, this wagon sold last year for $45,000. It is now on offer with No Reserve, and when you combine those two factors, he could potentially be facing a significant financial loss. However, if you are on the hunt for a classic station wagon, his loss could be your gain. Does this one spark your interest enough for you to consider submitting a bid?


  1. alphasud Member

    I remember this on BaT last year. Really cool and a pristine piece of history. It wasn’t 45K large cool and I suspect like so many cars on BaT there was a bidding war. Now that this person has the car they are asking what have I done! I would think a car like this would be 15-20K tops.

    Like 6
  2. Steve Bush Member

    Is this even a legitimate listing; considering that it sold for $45k a year ago? And it’s a beautiful car, but perhaps half that price seems like high for late 1970s SW with a 351.

    Like 7
  3. Lincoln B Member

    ebay link does not work for me.

    Like 8
    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Mortensen Staff

      The seller must have pulled the listing?

  4. Todd Zuercher

    I remember this auction as well. If the listing is legit, I think the seller is going to take a significant bath.

    Like 5
  5. Billyray

    I’ll bet he MEANT to have a 50k reserve, not a 5k one. Suddenly the listing has vanished.

    Like 8
  6. William Thomas Kircher

    351 V8 only producing 145 HP. What a shame.

    Like 2
    • Skorzeny

      That’s what happens when a government gets involved in the auto industry. Which they shouldn’t be involved in at all.

      Like 13
  7. DON

    I wrecked more than my share of these loaded Country Squires back in my derby days . I liked using them because the gas tanks were up by the rear diff. Of course they were used up $50.00 bombs when I got them !

    Like 4
  8. Steve Clinton

    Ah, the good old days, when station wagons were land yachts and roamed the earth with faux wood paneling!

    Like 3
  9. geoff cook

    What would one do with such a vehicle?

    Like 1
  10. Geoff

    What would one do with such a vehicle?

    • tugdoc

      I would get a manikin roll it up in a carpet with maybe a foot sticking out and Head out on the hiway.

      Like 1
  11. Joe

    Ebay will not bring the same money that BAT did. He overpaid.

    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Mortensen Staff

      Sure it could. Looks like this listing wasn’t legit anyway.

      Like 4
  12. Ensign Pulver

    “Think you hate it now, wait until you drive it”

    Like 2
  13. Paul N

    Our family had two LTDs in the mid to late 70s. After my mother totaled the first one, we got another one. They were land yachts but to a 15/16 year old kid, you didn’t care. You were just glad you had the freedom to drive out on your own.

    Like 1
  14. angryjonny

    This thing needs a hood scoop.

  15. Grumpy

    16 mpg. LOL! Maybe 10

    Like 1
  16. Jim casey

    Bogus listing-never list a vehicle while drinking…..

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