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6k Mile Barn Find: 1978 Lincoln Continental Mark V

Classics like traditional 1970s Land Yachts are about as politically incorrect as a motor vehicle can be in an era when manufacturers are focusing more on the economy and hybrid models. These cars are as big and bold as it is possible to be, and fuel economy was not one of the company’s driving forces behind their design. However, they have developed a solid following as potential owners seek to recapture a time when fuel was cheap and life was less complicated. This 1978 Lincoln Continental Mark V is a perfect example of the breed and was recently unearthed in an Idaho barn. It spent years in hibernation, but the seller revived it and returned it to a roadworthy state. They have listed the Mark V here on Craigslist in Seattle, Washington. The price for this slice of automotive luxury is $19,500 OBO, and I must say a big thank you to Barn Finder Tony P for spotting this fantastic survivor.

What a transformation! The seller purchased the vehicle from its original owner. It is unclear how long it spent in the barn, but I feel the time could be measured in decades. It wears its original Code 67 Gold Metallic paint, but there is evidence of a minor touch-up on the hood. The first photo in this article confirms the paint on the trunk and rear quarter panels was frequently exposed to the sun, meaning those surfaces have faded slightly. The original owner lived on a gravel road, and flying gravel has slightly “blasted” the area behind the rear wheel arches. None of these problems are severe, and the new owner could leave them untouched if they pursue the preservation path. However, a reputable paint shop should be able to return the car to its former glory without resorting to a complete repaint. The Lincoln is rust-free, which will be a relief for those unwilling or unable to tackle any grinding or welding. The Landau-style vinyl top is excellent, as are the wheels and trim.

I have never understood why an owner would list a car of this caliber and lumber their advertisement with second-rate photos. However, that is the case with this Mark V, leaving us limited resources to assess its interior condition. The seller describes it as excellent, with no wear or other problems. It supports the mileage claim, and the only functional problem is a minor issue with the driver’s window regulator. Everything works as it should, and the Lincoln retains its new car smell. The suggestion is the back seat may never have been used because the seatbelts wear their factory protective plastic. Amazingly, the air conditioning still blows ice-cold after years in storage, but the A/C is the first of a respectable list of comfort equipment that cements this car’s luxury credentials. The buyer receives power windows, power locks, a power antenna, cruise control, a tilt wheel, and an AM/FM radio/8-track player.

It is disappointing the seller provides no engine photos, but we know its original owner ordered it equipped with the 400ci V8, a three-speed C6 automatic transmission, power steering, and power brakes. This combination was considered the entry-level configuration in 1978, with the V8 delivering 166hp and 319 ft/lbs of torque. Most buyers weren’t concerned about how these classics would fare at the local drag strip, which is reassuring considering it would take a reasonably leisurely 19.8 seconds to cover the ¼-mile. If you had the cash to splash on a Mark V, the fact it gulped its fuel at around 11mpg was also unlikely to cause sleepless nights. However, once the driver pointed the Lincoln at the open road, it would cruise comfortably and with eerie quietness at freeway speeds all day. The seller is this classic’s second owner, purchasing it from its original owner after locating it in a barn. They discovered it retained its original documentation and complete service records confirming the odometer reading of 6,900 miles is genuine. It had sat for years, but they worked through a process of returning it to a driveable state. It runs and drives, but since it wears its original forty-five-year-old tires, they recommend the new owner trailers it home.

Although it isn’t perfect, the odometer reading for this 1978 Lincoln Continental Mark V sets it apart from the crowd. The new owner could elect to preserve this beauty, although addressing its cosmetic shortcomings would be a task a good paint shop could tackle to return the vehicle to as-new condition. Values for these cars remained stable for over a year, but they have softened slightly since the start of 2023. The drop isn’t dramatic, and I see no reason it shouldn’t reverse. Considering the overall condition and mileage, the seller’s price looks highly competitive. If you’ve aspired to own a luxury classic from the 1970s, could this Mark V be a strong contender?


  1. Bob_in_TN Bob_in_TN Member

    I like the Marks of this era simply because of their size and boldness and presence. Who cares about space utilization or fuel economy or practicality or whatever, it was all about making a statement. And when doing so, why not do it with a bold, flashy color.

    Given their clientele back in the day, they are not particularly hard to find with low miles. And they don’t bring big money. Enjoy the cruise on the interstate.

    Like 20
  2. Maggy

    If I bought this 6900 k mile car from the original owner and it needed a window regulator after doing all the work to make it look great again I would fix that and the gas gauge.Cmon man that’s malarkey to not fix those 2 simple problems. .Finish the mission .Cool car but 19500 is pretty steep even with the low miles imo.glwts.

    Like 11
    • Dave

      I agree. Everything should work when the ask is that high. Those issues open the door for negotiation, as well as the OBO in the ad.

      Like 4
    • bull

      At the right auction in today’s collector car world this car will easily do $25K given the mileage with the window and fuel gauge not working. Recent low mile Mark V auction sales across the country support this price level.

      Once it crosses the block and market SOLD it’s the buyer problem now!

      Like 4
  3. Zen

    I always loved these huge cars, and still want one, but with the 460 engine.

    Like 4
  4. Robert Levins

    I love this Mark V – beautiful car. BIG Jet – setting cruiser that just didn’t care about political correctness, gas mileage or anything else. Just “ filler up! “ – who cares. Gotta love ‘em and I do. I would definitely consider this 1978 Lincoln for sure but the only thing that holds me back is the fact that it’s a basic level MK V. Sort of too bad in way because I love the color scheme and turbine wheels. Even the 400ci engine. I guess if I wanted to – I could swap out the corduroy interior for some really nice velour. Good luck.

    Like 3
    • Ken

      You make some good points except there was no designation in existence that was MK5 for Lincoln. I think for some tiny British car at one point. But Lincoln didn’t employ the MK moniker until the 2000s.

      Like 1
  5. Stan

    Real real nice Conti 👌

    Like 2
  6. Big Bear 🇺🇸

    I am amazed how this Mark V cleaned up after the dust and dirt on it! I wonder if the gas tank was drop and clean out or did they put fresh gas and additives in it then started up? I never that type of interior in a Mark V before. It’s still beautiful looking. I can’t believe someone brought this Mark V new and stop driving it after 6,900 miles and park it! Imagine being the person who found this and brought it. Personally I would of keep it….. But I perfect the 69 Mark III i had. That was a beautiful Lincoln with leather interior. Anyway good luck to the next owner. 🐻🇺🇸

    Like 2
  7. Rick R

    I would like to know the whole story on this car. How many years they drove it before they stored it, and why? this car would have been worth some money traded on a new car back in the day when parked.

    Like 0
  8. Smokey Smokerson

    165 herspers and 11 mpg. I don’t normally like to brag about my extraordinary spending habits, but I went to the gas station and grocery store on the same day, same trip actually. What really makes these excellent all day highway cruisers is all the opportunities you have to stop and stretch your legs while you fill up the tank.

    Like 2
    • al

      I bought one used in 1980 it was 2 years old a special edition blue with gold half roof and gold interior can never remember get as good as 11 mph was more like 9 mph but was a great ride traded in 1985 for new town car

      Like 0
  9. Big C

    Low mileage Mk IV and V’s have been getting $20-25k at dealers for a while now. Sad thing is, ten years ago, those same cars were $10k, or less. Never had the garage space, or I’d already have one.

    Like 0
  10. Glenn Schwass Member

    I like it, the color and the interior. Wouldn’t want to own it but can appreciate the work that’ll go into it. Not an old Ford guy but I liked the 69-70 Lincolns.

    Like 2
  11. Todd

    My Brother has a 2,600 Original Miles Gold 1978 Diamond Jubilee. All Original Excellent Condition. We are pretty sure it’s the best in the World. 460

    Like 2
  12. John D

    These Lincolns are pure style and comfort, what’s not to like! It’s there day they all made a statement driving down the road or parked in your driveway.

    Like 2
  13. Bill Hall

    I think I might have seen this car in a barn full of neat old cars trucks and much more. This was in a barn in the middle of nowhere IDAHO. The Lincoln is one I would have liked to look at but it was totally buried in a barely accessible spot.The barn was owned by In Laws of a guy who was showing me an old truck.

    Like 0
  14. Bill Hall

    I think I might have seen this car a few years in the middle of NOWHERE Idaho. The barn was crammed full of neat old cars trucks and more neat junk.I didn’t get a chance to see it in the barn. It was pretty much buried and inaccessible .It was pretty much all owned by the in laws of a guy showing me his old tuck.

    Like 0
  15. Dan

    They were like riding on your living room sofa. That ride can’t be matched by anything new. Smoooth! These and Caddy’s of the period were a statement that you had arrived. The city people would call them Disco sleds 😊

    Like 1
  16. Don

    In 1978, I owned a 1975 Mark IV with the 460″ engine and I can tell you that while cruising at 70+ mph, you could actually detect the gas gauge needle dropping. Like everyone else these days, had I known it would appreciate that much, I’d have found a way to keep it. Just a beautiful car.

    Like 0

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