Diamond Jubilee: 1978 Lincoln Continental Mark V

Storage locker auctions can be a real lucky dip. Sometimes a buyer can score big, while at other times, they can be left with a lot of worthless junk. The owner of this vehicle took possession of it through one such auction, and it is a big score on a few levels. Hiding under that double cover is a 1978 Lincoln Continental Mark V Diamond Jubilee, and the owner has decided to move it on. The Lincoln is located in Billings, Montana, and has been listed for sale here on eBay. Bidding on this not-so-rough diamond has reached $4,652, but the reserve hasn’t been met.

Once the covers came off, what was revealed was a Lincoln that is in extremely good condition. When I said that the owner scored big in the auction, I mean that this is one seriously big car. Apparently, the vehicle was parked in 1988, and that is where it has sat ever since. The conditions in the storage unit must have been close to ideal because the car is very well preserved. Of the production run of 5,159 Jubilees built, this is 1-of-2,602 that was finished in Diamond Blue. The remaining 2,557 were finished in Jubilee Gold. The paint and panels look to be in nice condition, with no signs of any rust issues. The vinyl top is in similar condition, while the original and color-matched alloy wheels appear to be free of any deterioration or oxidization. The Diamond Jubilee was an interesting departure for Lincoln, as it featured little in the way of chrome exterior trim. What there is looks quite nice, while the remaining moldings look really good.

The Jubilee brought with it a unique trim combination. Seats were upholstered in Wedgewood Blue cloth, while the dash pad was finished in blue leather. Some of the hard-wearing areas such as armrests were also upholstered in leather, while the inside of the console lid featured a bespoke umbrella. The interior of this car looks to be in really nice condition, with no major wear and tear issues. The console lid is warped, but there is a chance that this could be straightened without resorting to replacement. The dome light and clock currently don’t function, but it would appear that everything else operates as it should. The Jubilee came fully loaded, with only four available options. These included the moon-roof, CB radio, and the 460ci V8 with either single or dual exhausts. As far as optional extras are concerned, the original owner didn’t choose to enhance the interior any further than the standard equipment level. It means that you still get air conditioning, power operation for the windows, locks, and seats, cruise control, a radio/8-track player, and a tilt wheel.

Standard fare for the ’78 Continental was the 400ci V8, while the 460 was available as an option. This car is fitted with the latter engine (another “big” score), and it almost goes without saying that it also features a C6 automatic transmission, power steering, and power brakes. Acceleration and speed were not Continental strong points, but fuel consumption certainly was. With an average consumption of 10.1mpg, the Continental was a thirty beast. The good news here is that even after its extended hibernation, the vehicle has been coaxed back to life. The Lincoln runs and drives, but it isn’t clear whether it is roadworthy. Given the fact that the car only saw 10-years of active duty, I am inclined to agree with the owner when he says that the 23,000 miles showing on the odometer are believed to be original.

The owner quotes NADA valuation figures as potential benchmarks for this car, and the ’78 Continental Jubilee is one model where NADA seems to be close to the mark. There is no reason why this car couldn’t be worth $30,000 with what appears to be minimal work, especially given the low mileage figure. The owner says that the auction reserve has been set below the low retail value, meaning that someone could be scoring a lot of car for their dollar.


  1. IkeyHeyman

    What a find! Wonder what the backstory is here. I can see how this could come up in a storage auction if the owner died and had no heirs (or the heirs didn’t want it) but why take a car with only 23k miles and put it in storage for 31 years?

    Like 7
    • Robert White

      Maybe a Psychiatrist like Dr. Hanibal Lecter is storing an ex-patient’s head in a jar of formaldehyde in the back seat for posterity sake?

      What’s the name of the storage locker?

      Never forget that some people are just plain weirdoes.


      Like 4
  2. Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

    A local county coroner I know was called out to an ordinary, older, innocuous in appearance tract home. During her investigation she found no apparent heirs for the vast collection of gold and silver coins/bullion and a sundry of other valuables, notwithstanding items in the storage unit he had as well..
    You just never know about some people and what secrets they keep.

    Like 9
  3. Bob McK Member

    I would love to bring this one home if I could get it cheap enough. Sitting does a lot of damage.

    Like 7
  4. Bob Member

    Just read the Ebay ad. Owner seems to believe that they have a car that is worth a lot of money. Sorry, this car is nice. But sitting 30 years is horrible for a car. Start driving it and everything will need to be rebuilt. Unfortunately that makes its monetary value quite low. You need to remove your reserve and be happy when it sells.

    Like 15
  5. David

    Had a friend who had one identical to this. The ride was cloudlike and the back seat like sitting at home on the couch.

    Like 7
  6. Ken

    A standard 78 Mark V sold for about 17 thousand dollars. Add the 6000 dollar diamond Jubilee option, that made this the only American car to exceed 20 thousand dollars. The hammer slammed down at 23 grand off the showroom floor. That’s a lot of money for 1978

    Anyway, the first thing to do is to replace anything rubber, and if the car was started recently, there goes the whole fuel system. Other than Mississippi river sludge that you don’t want running through the fuel system, I can’t imagine what’s in the fuel tank. I’ve owned a 78 Diamond Jubilee in Diamond Blue, and I will tell you first hand, this is one gorgeous car.

    Like 7
  7. TimM

    Never remember seeing seats like that in these cars!! Quite a Lazy boy look!! Great find!!!

    Like 6
  8. Tirefriar

    Malaise era Detroit dreadnought, while is cool and getting rarer by the year is still not worth even half of that $30k. As it sits, perhaps a $7-$7.5k car at best

    Like 9
  9. George Mattar

    Way overpriced. These cars are so cramped inside. I worked on these brand new. Slow gas hog at best. Gimme me a 2010 Town Car with 4.6 engine any day. Far superior with 400,000 mile capability with maintenance.

    Like 3
  10. Bob_in_TN Bob_in_TN Member

    For reference, $23K in 1978 is about $90K today, or roughly the sticker price for a Reserve model Navigator (a Black Label would be about $100K). That was a pile of money in 1978, but you got a car which in hindsight was the pinnacle of its type.

    I think this particular car, and other big two-door personal luxury coupes, make a good lower-cost collector for people who appreciate them for what they are, and/or may be bored with muscle cars. Of course they were slow and gas hogs and much less mechanically and technically advanced as compared to newer cars, but what a presence. I like it.

    Like 2
  11. Paul

    The 4 extra feet in front of the motor to the bumper gives you a nice crumple zone! Although a little hard to judge when pulling up close to something!

    Like 2
  12. luke arnott Member


    Like 1
    • Robert G

      Junk!?!?!? How so?

      Like 3
  13. Comet

    Ok, I’ll be the one to ask. What’s the oil filter lookin thing hanging off of the air cleaner housing?

    Like 2
    • Ken

      It has to do with emmisions. I don’t know the exact purpose, but big government emmisions
      rules and regulations kicked in around 1974. So emmision Doo dads were combersome.

  14. Kenn

    An oversized crankcase breather device?

  15. Kenbo52

    I drive a very nice “91” Town Car but this is a BOAT . Wonderful

  16. Del

    400 was dawg engine.

    30 grand , really Adam ?

    Low mileage concours ones do not get 15 grand.

    Like 3
  17. Tim

    The oil can like feature on the air cleaner is a resonator to quiet down the air intake when putting you foot deep into the throttle.

    Like 1
    • Del

      what crap

  18. Robert G

    Junk!?!?!? How so?

    Like 1
  19. Robert G

    I have two of these, and top dollar is about $15,000 if it is in perfect driving condition. This car needs about three thousand dollars worth of work to make it road worthy. Plus you need to replace the cylinder heads with small chamber aluminum cylinder heads, and get rid of the smog camshaft to bring up the compression so you can get any kind of decent power and fuel economy out of it.
    In about fifteen years it will be worth $30,000

    Like 3
  20. canadainmarkseh

    Nice car not junk, yes they were a gas guzzler but it’s not like this would be a daily driver at least not for me. They used this same engine to pull 1 ton trucks around with big loads on there backs, the c6 was a tough transmission too. I’m no ford guy but this big beast I find quite appealing.as for the price demand will dictate that, and my prediction will be about $9500.00.

    Like 2
  21. Don T.

    Back in the day, my boss had one exactly like this one, great to drive and I even borrowed it one weekend to use as a wedding car for my sister-in-law and her husband’s wedding.

    Like 1
  22. brian b

    The seller states these cars range in price from the low $20s to the $40s. Since when? These cars are nice but tons of the them survived and there is no way they are worth that kind of money. There are nine listed on ebay and all are under $20k and most are closer to $10k.

    Like 3
    • Bob Member

      In todays environment some people seem to think that if they say something it makes it true. Unfortunately many people seem to believe it. You are right, this car is worth somewhere between 10 and MAYBE 15K tops.

      Like 1
      • Robert G


      • Ken

        Actually it’s extremely difficult to arbitrarily place a monetary value on anything. You must go by current market value, and compare apples to apples. You can’t take a low mileage base model Mark V to a Diamond Jubilee. For Example, a few years ago, Barrett Jackson’s hammer came down on a Jubilee Gold 78 Mark V for $49,500. The Gold Jubilee had 56 miles. Not thousand miles….56 miles. AND!! The Diamond Blue Metallic are more desirable.

    • Ken

      I can assure you the nine you saw were not the Special Edition 75th Anniversary edition Diamond Jubilees.

    • Del


  23. Eddie Nash

    My Dad owned a car(maroon color 4dr version of this car). Low miles when he died my stepmother STORED HIS CAR for 25 years). SO that’s why low miles and stored on this one, possibly like my family experience. Yes those seats came in these cars.

  24. Charles bivens

    Hi, is this car still available? My mom passed and I’d like to possibly acquire it in my mom’s memory.

    Thank you,

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