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No Reserve 1978 Ford Bronco XLT 4X4

We all know about the original (’66-’77) Ford Bronco’s popularity but it seems that the trend is continuing with the follow-on generation such as this 1978 XLT example. These big two-door variants are moving in the same direction (upward) as full-size pickup trucks from this era are. Today’s McAllen, Texas discovery is looking sharp in spite of its reported 108K miles of use and it’s available, here on eBay for a current bid of $30,000 with 85(!) bids tendered as of this writing.

The seller tells us that this Bronco has been subjected to a frame-off (or is it really a body-off?) restoration which included, of course, a respray as well as having been undercoated for “show purposes”. That strikes me as a bit odd, I guess because I don’t think of a 1978 Bronco as a show car kind of vehicle – at least in stock form, but why not, I suppose. Of course, then the seller adds, “It is a beautiful rig if looking for a really nice driver, not trailer queen, it not perfect since been a driver” – yeah, that seems more logical. Here’s a walkaround video that will give you some more detail – it is clean! If you think this Bronco looks lifted, it is, it has had a three-incher added. I’m not sure how that translates into the ride experience but I know having undergone a similar raising with a Jeep Wrangler, it ruined the ride and made it uncomfortable for daily use.

In the motivation department, we find a 158 net HP, 400 CI V8 engine connected to a four-speed Cruise-O-Matic automatic gearbox and working in concert with a manually activated transfer case for 4X4 activity. A dual exhaust system has been added and the seller states, “4×4 also works great though never used it has been a cruiser, not off-roader Everything works on Bronco far as I’m aware“.

The interior is simple, bright, and clean – not austere the way similar vehicles from this era can be. The driver’s seat is going to need to need some upholstery repair but the rest of it, including the cargo area is good to go. As a side note, do you think that the instrument panel has enough wood grain contact paper slathered about? It seems incongruous in a vehicle of this nature but that’s how things rolled back then and it was a feature of the XLT option.

I’ll admit that I am surprised at the bidding. I don’t track this vintage Bronco the way I do some other vehicles, so maybe its current $30 large bid is typical. Still, it seems outsized to me, what’s your thought on that topic?

Comments

  1. Avatar photo CATHOUSE

    I like it, this is a very nice Bronco. My one nit pik though is that like most of the 1978-1979 Broncos that get posted here on BF this one is missing the fiberglass covers for where the cap bolts onto the body. It seems like it is rare for someone to bolt those back in place.

    Like 3
    • Avatar photo Craig

      Yes, at the base ofthe rear side windows. Those only came with the XLT trim and if missing are next impossible to find. I have a 78 XLT and am VERY careful with them.

      Like 1
  2. Avatar photo ds Member

    Big dollars ($175k) for Restomodded version of this model, this last Scottsdale Barrett-Jackson.

    Like 2
  3. Avatar photo Dan

    The lift seems par for the course, that seems to be the trend for 4x4s these days but I would bring it back to its original height for originality sake and to keep this a tolerable driver. It’s got 108k, might as well enjoy it and enjoy it carefully because it’ll only appreciate.

    Like 2
    • Avatar photo Jage Larch

      Had many ’78 and ’79’s and all but one had the old 4″ Rancho kits. Ran 33″ or 35″ tires. All rode and drove awesome on and off road.
      Lots of my F-150’s had the same lift, but rode a bit bumpier due to the obvious weight distribution difference.

      Like 2
  4. Avatar photo Paul N

    Nice! But not 30K nice

    Like 1
  5. Avatar photo Jage Larch

    30k is low if it’s as clean as advertised.
    I currently have 3 Bronco’s from ’78-’79 and have owned a half dozen others.
    All but one have had the old 4″Rancho springs with 2 inch rear block lifts with the degreed C bushing swap and all of them ride and handle incredibly with 33″ or 35′ tires on 8 wide 15’s or 16’s.
    Easy to work on, simple to fix, tons of parts available.
    Prone to power steering problems for some reason, weak pumps I Believe. Two of the ones I kept had a heaver model pump installed, third was fine. Only one of the previous 6 needed attention.
    Prices are all over, but without fenderwell rust, 25k is cheap for “decent” and 50k is high, but not crazy for “very good” .

    Like 3
  6. Avatar photo Jeff Member

    That wood grain was part of the XLT package if I remember correctly. I always wanted one but couldn’t find any decent used ones back in the day. Interesting that this one has a temporary tag on it. Fix and flip?

    Like 1
  7. Avatar photo Nevada1/2rack Member

    Owner took really good care of this big boy! But Four speed auto trans? Either a typo or a non-stock unit.

    Like 1
    • Avatar photo Jim ODonnell Staff

      Note the attached, four-speed auto standard.

      JO

      Like 0

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