Caesar’s Chariot: 1976 Ford Econoline Boogie Van

Isn’t it incredible that despite the numerous intricate details that go into creating a truly a van like this that so many of them survive looking like they just rolled out of a 1970s drive-in movie theater parking lot? There’s a lot going on with this 1976 Ford Econoline Chateau that has been thoroughly customized in the finest traditions of the “van-tastic” lifestyle. The seller reports that it also has just 66,500 original miles, which suggests it was turned into a show truck and then used sparingly ever since. You’ll find “Caesar’s Chariot” here on craigslist near Omaha for $17,000.

Thanks to Barn Finds reader Pat L. for the find. Man, this thing is wild. The paint job is seemingly very well done, or at the very least, quite complex – you don’t shoot this in a weekend, in any event. The Lucas fog lamps are a wicked period choice and I love the stone shields. Side pipes are a must-have in this arena of vehicular modifications, and the multi-spoke wire wheels are just icing on the cake. Fender flares and what looks like a front air dam sneaking out beneath that OEM front bumper with excellent chrome finish completes the look. The mural, of course, is a whole discussion in and of itself – what is the inspiration for “Caesar’s Chariot”, I wonder?

But wait – there’s more. With an exterior like this van has, it should come as no surprise that the interior confines are done up to the nines in peak 70s fashion. The seller claims the interior was completed over two years in 1976 and 1977 and if that’s true, it’s amazing how well it’s held up in that time. A more modern touch includes the subwoofers mounted under the rear couch area, so you’ll have some bass bumping in the event there’s no other bumping going on. I’d love to get a panoramic view of the cabin as it appears to be quite ornate with lots of details that suggest the interior was designed in a very intentional format – like you’re walking into an actual house as opposed to an Econoline.

The condition of the interior extends to the front seats as well, where there’s little indication that anyone ever actually sat in these beautiful front buckets. The carpets and door panels are clad in an identical color of blue and these details continue to reinforce that a lot of thought went into the original build. In my opinion, this Econoline had to have spent time on the show circuit in the past, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see photos of it in a conventional hall setting at a gathering of like-minded van enthusiasts. The seller claims he had it professionally appraised at $18K – what do you think of that valuation?


  1. alphasud Member

    Everything has a cycle given enough time. Colors come and go. The station wagon was a family’s do everything vehicle that felt of favor to the minivan. And the minivan fell victim to the SUV. Custom vans became a hot commodity in the 70’s and 80’s. You had 2 types from what I remember. The people mover that was upscale with comfy seats, carpet, lights and even a TV and VCR. Then you had the other custom like we see here. Lind of like a Lamborghini loud an obnoxious and over the top. Yea, that’s it this custom van is like a Lamborghini van! I guess the question is has it been long enough for the cycle to have come full circle? Like it or not here it is. Are you ready for the custom van revolution?

    Like 9
  2. Greg B Greg B Member

    Perfect for any out there with the name Caesar ;-)

    I actually love these old ’70’s van conversions like this.

    Like 13
  3. Bick Banter

    Little Caesars could buy it and claim that it was the vehicle of their founder, the diminutive John T. Ceasar during the mid/late 1970s. They are aggressively expanding and this would likely help.

    Like 4
  4. Tony Primo

    Stone shields for the fog lights, because in the 70’s and 80’s we didn’t have them on 24 hours a day, annoying other drivers like they do today.

    Like 11
  5. Big C

    Those side pipes were just waiting to burn your girlfriends leg, when she was stepping out of your van, after a long ride.

    Like 9
    • bowmade

      after a long ride…. haha (sorry)

      Like 9
  6. RoughDiamond Member

    All I can think of besides this being such a cool old school customized van is that a PPI focusing on the interior with a blacklight would be highly recommended.

    Like 6
  7. Rw

    Cool van ,to bad it has chrome basket wheels that sucked back then and still do today.

    Like 2
    • Lee Wells

      I never liked the wire basket wheels. I thought they were cheap looking.

  8. danny mathers

    wowwwweeee bam powowowowowo the 70s aare back had a van in the disco area pughin this van is awhole new thing lookout teenagers the 70s are back. thanks danny toys.

    Like 1
  9. Martinsane

    Fun van and growing up in the 70s custom vans were all the rage. I remember having trading cards with custom vans on them and even later on in high school, mid 80s, there were plenty of tricked out vans.

    All the nostalgia aside the asking price is laughable. Just like the current trend of station wagons, ie cars no one ever wanted and couldn’t give away reality, I hope, rears it’s ugly head before to long.

  10. Roland Schoenke

    Love it but change those nasty mirrors

  11. Lance Ballard

    I was surprised to see it on the half ton chassis. From the ones I remember in the 70’s you wanted a 3/4 ton to handle the extra weight of all the particle board and insulation. These were always a big hit at the car shows.

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks.

Become a member to add images to your comments.


Keep me in the conversation via email. Or subscribe without commenting.