Low Mileage Parts Hauler: 1960 Ford Ranchero

1960 Ford Ranchero

We’ve talked about the larger early Ford Rancheros recently on Barn Finds, but I have a soft spot for this smaller, Falcon-based version. In my favorite period Wimbledon White color, this would be the basis for my perfect shop truck. Some of you would undoubtedly like to leave the patina as-is, but I have my own ideas. The Ranchero is currently in Phoenix, Arizona and is being auctioned here on eBay at no reserve.

Ford Ranchero

A claimed 32,000 original miles has me wondering who bought this dual-purpose vehicle in the first place. Perhaps an auto shop that went out of business unexpectedly? Maybe it didn’t fulfill whatever the buyer was looking for? If the two Mustangs across the street belong to the current owner, at least the seller is a blue oval enthusiast. There’s something about the simplicity of this generation of Falcon that I really like, and the pickup bed would make it perfect for hauling Triumph and MG engines and transmissions, which I seem to do on a regular basis.

1960 Ford Ranchero Bed

Close ups of the bed and body show some worn-through spots, surface rust and blemishes, but nothing that scares me away. I’d tackle the rust and repaint it in the original color, maybe putting a simple mat down in back to protect the new paint a little. Or maybe go all out with a bedliner coating?

1960 Ford Ranchero Interior

The interior looks surprisingly livable, although the blue certainly has faded a bit. I would add a modern air conditioner for the hot Carolina summers and a period-looking wooden GT350-type steering wheel. Throw in a modern internals but vintage looking radio and I’d be set for those parts runs! The headliner looks great, although I do think I’d replace the door weatherstripping that’s hanging down in the pictures. A little searching found a kit here for $499 that replaces all the seals on the vehicle, including the windshield for that glass-out repaint.

1960 Ford Ranchero Engine

Engine-wise, I wouldn’t do a thing except paint the valve cover, replace hoses and belts and keep it tuned up. The Ford 144 cubic inch inline 6 is known to be a solid and long-lived engine and certainly has enough power to do what I would need it to do. Signs of recent activity include a new-looking battery, fuel filter and what must be a freshly-painted air cleaner hopefully with a new element inside.

1960 Ford Ranchero Wheel1963 Ford Ranchero

While the simple dog-dish hubcaps have their advocates, I think Classic Motorsports got the look just right a few years ago with their project 1963 Ranchero—American Racing Torq-Thrusts (ala GT350) just look right. Modern but still relatively high profile tires and I’d be done. I’ve told you what I’d do with this hybrid car-truck; but what would you do?


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  1. Leo

    Think you hit all the “upgrades” dead on the head athough at some point i might just have to throw in a V8 (period correct 289). Or i might have to start looking around for some period correct hop up parts for the 6 banger. Clifford intake, cam, some split headers, etc..

    I like :)

    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

      Leo, I wouldn’t argue if a 289 magically appeared, even a 302. Like the idea of hopping up the 6, though, even better.

  2. jim s

    looking at the photos on ebay i do not see any transmission oil cooler lines, as first year falcon automatic transmissions were aircooled, i think. i would keep the 6 cyl and switch to manual transmission, upgrade the brakes to dual master/front disc and fix any other safety issues. keep the rest of the stock/ used look. it would make a nice light duty pickup. great find.

  3. PaulG

    Sorry, but having owned one of these, I can honestly say it was worthless. The 63-64 versions are quite a bit better that this first Falcon based Ranchero.
    If this one goes for anywhere near the asking price, I’ve got a bridge for sale…

  4. GOPAR

    This would be a great little truck to build, but to me, the phrase “beautiful patina” used when describing a car for sale means “This thing really needs some body work and a paint job but I don’t want to fool with it, so I hoping that someone who likes rust, dings, and bad paint will give me a lot of money for it”. I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

  5. Mark in Medford

    Looks like a new gas cap would be a good idea.

  6. Gary

    As I recall one of these little haulers was used in the James Bond movie “Goldfinger”. It was driven by Odd Job and he hauled a crushed to a cube Lincoln Continental of about the same year. The owner of the Lincoln had a “Pressing Engagement” that day.
    This would be a cool little parts hauler, shop truck but I think is a bit over priced even for the low mileage as represented.

    Like 1
    • David G

      That’s one of the most painful moments on (vintage) film today for a classic-car lover!
      A cherry Continental driven to a salvage yard, crushed to a cube right before our eyes (w/o any pieces being taken off), then plopped into the Falcon Ranch and driven off. Btw, doubt that what they dropped into the Ranch was the crushed Conti since its weight (4400-ish?) would far exceed the capacity of the Ranch that Odd Job then drove happily around…

    • Mark

      Here’s that scene.


  7. Paul

    I loved following the classic motorsports project on this truck. I want theirs.I know they put in a V8, but don’t remember if oy was the 289 or the 302.

  8. Carlos in San Diego

    Seems a pretty high starting price. I think $3,000 might be the most this one would fetch. The idea on eBay is to start low & let the bidding establish the actual “what someone is actually willing to pay” value. 0 bids should tell you something.

  9. Vince Habel

    They say no reserve but start at a certain price which is a reserve.

  10. Graham Lloyd

    Had a 61 Ranchero. No options except the heater. Was a flower car at a small town Funeral home since new. Bought it with about 20 thousand on it, and sold it with around 70.

    Absolutely delightful little truck. Hauled all sorts of stuff in it. Comfortable, dead nuts simple and parts are everywhere. A little slow off the line, but no problems keeping up with today’s traffic.

    Who knows how long it has been in Arizona, but it has the usual quarter rust. I would want to check the floors. They are the sore spot with any early Falcon. Plus, the patch panels available for the floors aren’t all that great.

    He might have a chance at 5500 if it was a 62/3 v8 car. But the 61/61 Rancheros (and Falcons) don’t pull the same money. Especially one that is typical of what can be found all over for around 3 grand or less.

    Someday another one might find itself in my driveway. What would I do with it? Something radically different to what the majority of early Rancheros see. A 144/170 or early 200 6. You guessed it. Leave it factory stock.

  11. Warren

    Too much.

  12. dbigb1 Member

    Vince Hable, you hit the nail on the head !!!!!!!!!

  13. Smitty

    I like that it has the fuel stains from walking away from the gas pump. My ’64 Ranchero had the same!

  14. junkman Member

    To bad the original seat is missing, I seem to remember they had cattle brand markings on them. Very cool, but as stated earlier about 60% over priced

  15. Wayne

    I think it’s been around the clock, speedo should possibly be 132,000. Wouldn’t need re trimming at 32,000.

  16. Barry

    I find it hard to believe the 32K claim. That comes out to around 581 miles per year. They must have been some pretty darn hard miles. More likely it is 132K not 32K.

  17. Barry

    I just realized that it appears to have rust on the valve cover. Is that common? I myself have never seen rust there. Patina for me just means crummy and or rust.

  18. Kyle

    The door panels and seat are not correct and the aftermarket gauges scream that this is not an original 32k car. Lots of nicer examples around for less money.

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