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No Reserve: 1979 Ford Bronco Ranger XLT

Generating genuine buyer interest can be challenging for some sellers because sometimes a classic doesn’t strike a chord with enthusiasts. That isn’t the case with this 1979 Ford Bronco Ranger XLT. The desirability of these vehicles was demonstrated when they were new, and the seller’s decision to offer it with No Reserve has only served to heighten that interest forty-four years after this Bronco rolled off the line. Potential buyers will find the Ranger listed here on eBay in Tacoma, Washington. The bidding has raced to $18,900 due to some intense action. There is still time remaining on the auction, but the No Reserve status means this gem is only days away from finding a new home.

The 1979 model year was a banner one for the Bronco. After years of disappointing sales with the First Generation model, Ford introduced its Second Generation variant in 1978. It remained in production for a mere two years, but its sales figures rewarded the company’s decision not to scrap the badge during more challenging times. The Bronco hit a six-figure sales total for the first time in 1979, with 104,038 buyers giving one of these beauties a new home. This came off the back of 77,917 sales the previous year, which was well ahead of the previous generation’s best result of 25,824 in 1974. This 1979 Ranger XLT presents impressively in a color combination of Dark Jade Metallic and Wimbledon White. The seller admits it received a repaint around twenty-three years ago, but its presentation remains eye-catching. The paint exhibits a healthy shine, while any imperfections in it or the steel beneath are insignificant. This Bronco was never undercoated, making the lack of penetrating rust an achievement. The underside shots reveal nothing beyond a light dusting of surface corrosion the winning bidder might choose to treat, but this could happen at their leisure. The chrome and glass are in good order, ensuring this Bronco receives admiring glances and positive comments wherever it goes.

This Bronco’s interior possesses the “wow” factor, courtesy of its striking multi-tone Green vinyl and cloth trim. Its condition is admirable for its age, although a couple of imperfections prevent it from scoring perfect marks. The carpet on the tailgate is heavily worn on one edge, but sourcing a replacement would be easy and inexpensive. However, the slightly strange deterioration of the vinyl on the passenger seat has me scratching my head. I can’t fathom what may have caused it, but the buyer will probably choose to source replacements to improve the overall presentation. Otherwise, the remaining upholstered surfaces and back seat are excellent, the dash, pad, and carpet are in good order, and the faux woodgrain trim hasn’t succumbed to typical wear or deterioration. The winning bidder receives an interior with some welcome factory options. They sink back into a set of desirable “captain’s chair” front bucket seats, while air conditioning, cruise control, a tilt wheel, and an AM/FM stereo radio make life on the road pretty pleasant. The seller admits the A/C is inoperative, but the remaining features work as they should.

Lifting this Bronco’s hood reveals the range-topping 400ci V8 that sends 156hp and 277 ft/lbs of torque to the road via a three-speed automatic transmission and a dual-range transfer case. The driver shouldn’t raise a sweat behind the wheel courtesy of the power assistance for the steering and brakes. The engine bay presentation is about average for a genuine survivor of this vintage, with no evidence of long-term fluid leaks or signs the seller has detailed it within an inch of its life. It has a genuine 112,000 miles on the clock, although the seller doesn’t mention verifying evidence. However, the bulletproof nature of the mechanical components means that if the figure is accurate, this Ranger will take its new owner on many adventures in years to come. The vehicle runs and drives perfectly, making flying in and driving it home a realistic expectation.

It is easy to see why this 1979 Ford Bronco Ranger XLT has attracted thirty-two bids. Its presentation is above average for its age, it features desirable factory options, and its only shortcomings are minor cosmetic issues. If anything, I am surprised the bid total isn’t higher. However, plenty of time remains in this auction, and history demonstrates that the action can become frantic as the end draws near. If you have been searching for a Second Generation Bronco, would you consider this one?


  1. Bob_in_TN Bob_in_TN Member

    Good write-up Adam. These do have interest in the market, following the increase in collectability of old trucks in general (and somewhat on the shirttails of the meteoric rise in value of the first generation Bronco?). So I’m not surprised at the bidding.

    This looks to be a good example. I like the green and white two-tone with the basket handle treatment. The tire and wheel package isn’t overdone. The green interior with the striped upholstery is cool. Nicely equipped, but wish the a/c worked. Tons of pics. Overall a nice Bronco

    Like 7
  2. DRV

    I saw this and stopped to read as our farm had the exact one less those nice wheels.
    We beat the bajeebees out of it. When the cows would get out we’d round them up with this no matter what field they were in, or speed we’d have to go. Unstoppable would be defining. The owner would use it for travel thus giving it distinctive tobacco stains down the side and worn out driver door hinges from opening the door at every stop sign.
    This one sure looks great.

    Like 5

    I love the late 70’s to early 90’s SUV’s from the big three, the style is so good that you almost can’t go wrong with any of them. The thing that irks me about most of them what is described in the excellent write up- 156 horsepower in 4,000+ pound suv with an automatic transmission is disappointing, to say the least. The torque rating is better than expected, but I’m a power-mad despot, and I need at least 300 horsepower in such a heavy vehicle and I’d much rather have a manual transmission to take advantage of the power and torque.
    But other than that, this Bronco is absolutely beautiful in my opinion and I’d love to take it camping and off the beaten path every day the weather was nice. Just a really good looking suv and I certainly wouldn’t kick it out of my garage.

    Like 3
  4. Bunky

    Nice rig. Not sure that I could live with the 400M smogmotor though. 429/460 is a bolt in. Nice write up. GLWTS

    Like 3
  5. mainlymuscle

    Nice truck and green is hot right now .This will hit $40k easily , and 50 is not out of the question.

    Like 2

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