All Original Appeal: 1971 Ford LTD Country Squire

Those wagons keep on rollin’. We’ve had a lot of station wagon coverage lately on Barn Finds and their growing popularity is notable. Last week, it was this ‘73 Ford Country Squire and today, it is an equally impressive 1971 Ford Country Squire. I thought the comparison would have value as the ’71 model is lacking the ice-breaker sized front bumper that was such an imposition on the ’73. It’s also green and I can’t turn down a green car. With no further adieu ado, here is a very nice ’71 Ford LTD Country Squire wagon, located in Simi Valley, California, and available, here on eBay for a current bid of $12,600, 42 bids tendered as of this writing.

Being a Country Squire means fake wood paneling, lots of it but then most station wagons in this era had one model in their line-up slathered in it. It seems peculiar in the light of modern times but it was a bit of a status item back in the day and was usually reserved for the top drawer model. And being a Country Squire, it sat above the Country Sedan and Ranch Wagon alternatives.

With 69K miles of experience, this big Ford is barely broken in. And it looks it! How one keeps a car looking this nice over an almost 50-year span is hard to fathom. The seller claims that there is some patina present, as well as a minor brush with a solid object that is evident, but other than the left fender trim, it’s lost on me. We had station wagons in my family back in this era and between teenage drivers (with a few Spring breaks thrown in for good measure) and hauling every conceivable thing under the sun, they usually looked rode hard and put away wet by their sixth birthday. This wagon still, after all of these years, has a magnificent, deep finish with non-faded paneling. Of course, California has been very, very good to its overall psyche but there is nothing needed in terms of this car’s exterior. And I can’t recall if I have ever spied a ’71 full-size Ford in Seafoam Green but it is just perfect!

The interior is, what else, green! But it is as spotless as the exterior – there is no sign of use, wear or weather-based deterioration. The carpet, vinyl upholstery, dash and instrument panel look much as the did when this Country Squire rolled off of the assembly line. The seller states that it is all original and it is a two-owner car – it seems almost impossible that it could have held up as nicely as it has through, what is now, three owners.

As you may recall with the ’73 Country Squire reviewed last week that even though Ford advertised the passenger capacity as being eight, though some considered that the opposing way-back seats really upped the count to ten. My thought was maybe if they are really good friends. This seller is going with a ten count as well; take a look at the layout and see what you think.

Under the hood of this big Ford is the new for ’71, 260 gross HP 400 CI V8. Interestingly, the old 390 CI “FE” engine was still available as well but not for California destined vehicles. The seller adds, “This car runs and drives fantastic and has had a $1,000 brand new aluminized exhaust system with muffler, steel radial tires and full tune-up done since pictures were taken”. With all of that in mind, this wagon should be good to go. As is almost always the case, a three-speed automatic transmission handles the gear changing chores.

So what’s not to like? Nothing as far as I can tell and 42 bids would agree. There is one day to go in the bidding action and someone is going to end up with one heck of a fantastic wagon. Might that someone be you?

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Comments

  1. Chas358 Chas358 Member

    What a neat old Ford. I’m glad the owners took such good care of it over the years.

    Like 14
  2. Robert

    Love it! I’m totally lost as to why car companies have slipped away from manufacturing station wagons and have moved into SUVs. I’ve owned six station wagons, all Fords or Mercury’s but one (a 1971 VW), and loved them all. I’d park this boat in my yard in a heartbeat.

    Like 15
    • Little_Cars Little_Cars Member

      GM stopped making the Buick TourX last year. When I bought it, the salesman and I could only think of only a few manufacturers doing them. Cadillac, Volvo, Subaru and Volkswagen still have wagons in their line up. Dodge did away with their Charger knockoff. In my time I’ve had a 70 AMC Rebel wagon and three Corvair wagons.

      Like 5
    • Bill McCoskey

      Robert,

      Probably the #1 reason the big 3 abandoned the typical wagon is because of the looming Federal fuel economy requirements. The big 3 all realized that trucks had a far less stringent fuel economy requirement

      If they created a class of vehicles that were as comfy as a car, rode higher than a car, but weren’t as bulky as the typical truck, these new vehicles could be called a “Sport Utility Vehicle” and [a very important consideration] come under truck classifications for fuel economy. This made it possible for the big 3 to meet the more stringent upcoming corporate fuel economy requirements.

      At first, the new SUV classification was met with luke-warm sales, however due to some heavy advertising by the big 3, SUV sales finally took off, and helped the big 3 meet the fuel Corporate fuel economy requirements.

      Like 3
      • Car Guy Beancounter

        Mr. McCoskey is absolutely correct regarding why station wagons were abandoned by the manufacturers. They were too heavy and negatively impacted the CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) for the manufacturer’s car fleets. This is also why the industry lobbied long and hard to have minivans and SUV’s classified by the EPA as trucks, even though they are primarily passenger vehicles. Ironically, today even small SUV’s like the Chevy Trax and Buick Encore are classified as trucks, as are all minivans such as the Grand Caravan and so on.

        Like 1
      • Little_Cars Little_Cars Member

        Funny, when I foolishly ran out and bought a new PT Cruiser for the wife, I commented to the salesman that the estimated fuel mileage seemed pretty bad for a non-turbo 4cyl small car (based on the Neon platform I was told). He said they were able to pull off the lousy mileage claim because the PT Cruiser was classified as a truck. SMH

  3. Rex Kahrs Member

    Without further ADO, I’ll mention that adieu means “goodbye”. Nice wagon.

    Like 3
    • Jim ODonnell Jim ODonnell Staff

      Ooops, that’s what happens when I let “Grammarly” complete my thoughts.

      Thx,

      JO

      Like 1
  4. Will Fox

    Back when you could buy groceries for your entire block, and it would ALL fit in the back without having to put the seat down. Or you could haul your son’s entire softball team–even the coach!! The rear cargo area alone is bigger than a Chevy Cruze today!

    Like 8
  5. Weasel

    Great write up Jim, you made me laugh.

    My question to the masses is this: could hideaway headlights be had on this car? It would be kinda cool if it had them.

    Not a sustainer,
    Weasel

    Like 5
    • Jammer

      The 1968 I had at one time had the hide away headlights.

      Like 2
    • Michael Keil

      No. From 1971 to 1975 the hideaway concealed headlights were not available on these Fords, wagons or sedans.

      Like 3
      • RM

        I think the 1975 LTD Landau had the hidden lights right up until 1978, the last year before the downsizing!

        Like 2
      • Michael

        I think you mean 1971 to 1974.

        In ’75, the Country Squire did have concealed headlamps, as well as the LTD sedan and coupe in the “Landau” version.

        It was the lesser sedans and wagons which had to manage with…gasp!…revealed headlamps.

        Like 4
    • Alex H.

      Country Squires could be had with concealed headlights from 1968 to 1970, and then from 1975 to 1978.

  6. dave

    I’m digging the curb feelers baby!

    Like 2
  7. Joe

    Reminds me of the 1972 LTD Country Squire my Scoutmaster drove while pulling our Tripp’s equipment trailer!

  8. Bo Folmer Andersen

    I drove across the US in this model back in 1978 – and it was absolutely wonderful. Bought it for 900USD, and sold it again 6 months later for 950 – to a guy who just needed a car with a trailer hookup, to haul a sailboat somewhere..

    Like 2
  9. local_sheriff

    It hardly gets more 70s Suburbia than this – oftentimes I’ve wondered why they didn’t choose a Ford wallpaper woodie wagon like this as background vehicle for ‘That 70s Show’ instead of the Vista. Plus; Henry Ford’s ideals would probably be a better match with Red Forman’s mindset…!

    Nothing but impressive that a typical everyday beater like this has survived for 50years in this condition – it apparently was cared for from day one. Up to 13.4K now which proves wagons are HOTTER than ever before – in today’s market one can buy a same year LTD ‘vert for less, who would have expected that to ever happen??

    This is a great find in beautiful period colors, best wishes to the next owner! And a big hand goes to any previous owners who took so good care of it đź‘Ź

    Like 6
  10. Bob C.

    I am actually amazed how well the “wood” still looks. I prefer the looks of the 71 and 72s over the 73s, because the latter looked bulkier. BTW, 1970 was the last year for the 390 in cars, but it did soldier on in trucks until 1976.

    Like 2
  11. karl

    My first demo derby car in 1980 was a twin to this car…well ok, not exactly a twin, it was tired, rusty with dull paint and faded wood graphics . New England is rough on cars ! This one is a real beauty , really brings back memories of a time when these seemingly were in every driveway .

    Like 2
  12. bone

    Seafoam green was an extremely popular color for Ford , from the Country Squire to the lowly Pinto . I seemed like there were more Fords in this color than any other at the time.

    Like 1
    • Christopher

      I knew two different people who had Mavericks in the same green. Our family’s ’74 Custom 500 wagon, and my 74 LTD (first car) were both in the medium blue metallic.

  13. stevek

    these things and their sedan siblings were EVERYWHERE growing up…my parents tried out a brown 4-door sedan before opting for a Chevy Monte Carlo in 1974. She wanted something sexier in her middle age…

  14. Mike

    We had a ’72 in forrest green with black interior. Very smooth car and we also towed a small Santa Fe travel trailer. When my brother and sister and I all had our own cars, Dad sold it to a friend at church and bought a ’76 Coupe De Ville!

  15. David G

    Wow, beautiful find indeed. Hoping new owner takes the same great care of it that it has been blessed with since new. Not sure why some folks insist on calling them ten passenger wagons, when they are clearly eight passenger capacity. There are eight seat belts in this car from the factory. The 390 was in it’s last year of passenger car usage in 1971, which included the 240 cid 6, 302 (fleet only) 351, 390, 400, and the 429. For ’72 full size Fords, the engine lineup was far more simplified. Standard engine was the 351, with the 400 and 429 as options. These cars are much lighter than their ’73-’78 replacements. The 4 door sedan version gained 750 pounds for ’73.

    Like 2
  16. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    SOLD for $15,110.

    Like 3
  17. Alex H

    I know this car. It belonged to a good friend of ours from about 1992 through just a couple of months ago. They had bought it for $2,500 back then, and they were at least the third owners of the car. It was originally a six-passenger model, but they found the jump seats in a Squire in the junkyard and installed them. It really is a 69,000-mile car and the interior is pristine. It had not been driven in many years and was on non-op status with the DMV. One of the owners passed away early this year and his wife sold the car. We acquired one of their other cars, a ’79 Lincoln Versailles. It too had been sitting for 6+ years. I hope the new owner of this ’71 Country Squire gets lots of enjoyment from it. I have a ’70 Squire I’ve owned since 1992 and I can attest to how solid and smooth these cars are.

    Like 2
  18. Bob McK Member

    Nice find and purchased well. You don’t see very many nice ones around.

    Like 1
  19. W9BAG Member

    My Aunt & Uncle had one in this same color. I believe it had a 400 cid engine. I drove it a few times. Wonderful driving wagon.

  20. Christopher

    I knew two different people who had Mavericks in the same green. Our family’s ’74 Custom 500 wagon, and my 74 LTD (first car) were both in the medium blue metallic.

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