Faded Pony: 1974 Ford Pinto Squire Wagon

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Government-mandated diving-platform bumpers notwithstanding, this 1974 Ford Pinto Squire wagon looks like a great project. Nice original and restored Squire wagons with these features can and do sell for $15,000 to $25,000 or more at auctions. The seller has this one listed here on craigslist in the Mile High City: Denver, Colorado. They’re asking $3,500. Thanks to Gunter K. for this tip!

It’s faded, somewhat sunburned, it’s showing a little rust, it needs paint, new woodgrain, interior work… Wait, where was I going with this again? Oh yeah, I was thinking that this is a drive-as-you-restore type of car. Even in this crazed condition, or maybe because of the condition, it would surely draw a crowd every time you filled the gas tank, got groceries, or stopped at the hardware store.

1971 through 1973 Pintos are my personal favorites due to their smaller bumpers, but any year Pinto in Squire wagon trim with a manual transmission would work for me. At just under 15-feet in length, I could squeeze two of these into a 10 x 30-foot storage unit. Sorry, I’m just thinking out loud for my own future reference. Vehicle hoarding is a disease, people, or at least a sickness. For the record, replacement woodgrain kits are available for less than a nice meal with your spouse. Or if you have a spouse like I do, for 1/3 the cost of a nice meal.

You can see that the interior also needs work, or not depending on your mindset. I have a tendency to always want to have things perfect if at all possible. Growing up a poor sharecropper (or close to it) tends to do that to people. They want everything to be as nice as possible once they reach a point of relative comfort. The four-speed manual here is the big draw for me. The cracks on the dash are a big drawback as are the vinyl seats. But, a nice, brown plaid (is that an oxymoron?) fabric could easily be sourced for dressing up the seats a bit. Like on this Mercury Bobcat that Jamie showed us eons ago. The back seat looks like new and the rear cargo area is probably big enough for most people on a daily basis.

The inline-four looks surprisingly good and relatively clean given the appearance of the rest of the car. It wouldn’t take much to detail the H out of that thing and you’d have an 82-horsepower stallion under the hood. You can see that a few things are missing and/or have been changed but the seller says that it runs great and that works for me. Would you restore this Pinto Squire or just keep it working great and drive it as it looks now?

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. Bob_in_TN Bob_in_TNMember

    Who would have thought a brown (well, dark gold), brown interior, big bumper Pinto Squire would be collectible? But they are. This looks like a straightforward project. The four-speed is a big plus, would make it fun to run errands. Who needs triple-digit horsepower?!?! Like Scotty says, you’d get plenty of attention and grins.

    Like 9
    • Skorzeny

      Bob, all we NEED is oxygen, food, water, and occasional shelter, but we all want more than that. I would go built 302 with a suitable transmission and a repaint. No vinyl wood.

      Like 9
  2. timothy r herrod

    I have only been in a pinto once, it was during a ice storm 85ish or so, a neighbor was driving on the ice with her kids and freaked out and got out and walked up our long driveway to our house and knocked and said she couldn’t drive anymore so I walked down the hill to her car and saw it was a green pinto wagon with the big bumpers, got in it and drove it right up our driveway and picked her up and drove her home. that little car got around very well I put it into first and just idled up the hill to the house. What I enjoy most about this site are the memories the cars bring up, thank you

    Like 19
  3. Terrry

    FWIW, ’73 Pintos had big front bumpers. In ’74 both ends had the big girders. Also, a 2.8 V6 could be ordered, for Pinto wagons only. I’m assuming this one has the 2.3 four.

    Like 3
    • Steve Clinton

      The ‘battering ram’ front bumpers didn’t show up until 1974. I know this because we had a 1973 Pinto wagon (and loved it!).


      Like 3
      • Terry

        Not so. Fed regs required 5mph front bumpers for 73. Anything else is not stock.

        Like 0
  4. chipl

    Gone already!

    Like 1
  5. Steve Clinton

    This Pinto was ‘rode hard and put away wet’.

    Like 0
  6. Lance

    Artie Johnson falling to Earth.

    Like 1
  7. James Adams

    Pintos, Vegas and gremlins.
    The 70s. What worth the most, I say
    Gremlins. Your thoughts?

    Like 0
  8. chrlsful

    just a very few short inches away from right sized (WB).

    I’d still grab it. Perfect engine’n carb (Lima & 32/36). 275lb v 450lb (302) – I’ll keep it (think re: frame stiffeners, K members, discs etc – later). My usual MO, buy affordable, drive while restoring, a free car for yr or 2?. “A sm car has sm probs. A big’un, big problems.”
    Never tried a noc replacement. Not sure where to get the glass edging (fake wood slat perimeter). A drk blue base, more ‘red oak’ or ‘mahogany’ fields I’ve seen – w/the blond-like maple perimeter? Might B nice? But the vehicle could do fine (know these products). AOD = 150lbs…(throttle valve rod, adapter, flex-plate for the aod converter…
    Right-O, Scott-O, smooth the bumpers 1st…

    Like 1
  9. Patrick Anderson

    Rode to high school in one of these, owned by a guy we called Scooby. So his car was the Scoobymobile. He was going to install a 302, that he had buried in the backyard, to “season”.

    Like 0
  10. Alan Robbins

    It’s a good thing none of these have come up for sale near my house had one back in the day, plastic woodie panels and all, would love another one.

    Crazy simple reliable cars that got you around.

    Like 0
  11. Mike Brown

    Why do I find this more interesting than the pair of Mustangs in the barn in Tennessee?

    I don’t have any problem with the big bumpers, even though I agree that the smaller ones on earlier Pintos look better.

    If I wanted to hot rod one, I’d be looking more toward the drivetrain out of a Mustang SVO or Thunderbird TC rather than a V8 swap, even though I’m swapping a 302 into my Ranger right now lol!

    Like 1
  12. Howard Kerr

    Back when the Pinto wagon first hit showrooms I drove one with the 2 liter and automatic transmission: not a very inspiring car to drive.

    If this were mine and I could afford to dump a large amount of money into it I would swap the 2.3 Lima for a newer Duratec 4 cylinder and a 5 speed manual. This is a popular upgrade on RWD European Fords of the 70s, so it is conceivably doable.

    Eventually I would get around to the exterior where I would remove the roof rack for noise reduction, or maybe keep it… And I would backdate the bumpers to get a bit of weight off each end. I would also keep those wheels, but have them cleaned up a bit.

    Like 0
  13. John H.

    78 Pinto Squire wagon, burned mustard yellow with the wood grain, 2.8 V6, the Road Jackal was my hand me down car from the folks after I got my driver’s license. That amazing machine departed for a 79 Capri I promptly crushed in a moment of stupidity. Nothing more surreal than getting out of your car, looking at the front end, radiator distorted into a sideways > pointing in the direction of the front clip 150′ up the road. Kids, do not pull out in front of anyone. Ever.

    Like 0

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