No Reserve V8 Grabber: 1972 Ford Maverick

The seller of this 1972 Ford Maverick proclaims, “Original Grabber V8“. Well, maybe so, and that’s a start, but as usual, there’s more to the story. It’s looking a bit worn, but Ford Mavericks do make regular appearances on Barn Finds so this example is worth a brief study. Discovered in Raymore, Missouri, this 1972 Maverick Grabber is available, here on eBay for a current bid of $830 with twenty-nine bids tendered so far.

Originally conceived as a sub-compact and a Falcon replacement, the Maverick sold well but isn’t found today with the regularity that a similar era Chevy Nova or Dodge Dart is. Some of that may be due to performance options that were available. The Nova, at the start of the ’70s decade, was still packing a big-block engine, though it went with a 350 small-block as the top motivator from ’71 forward. Over at Mopar, both the Duster and Dart were the benefactors of the superb 340 CI V8. Starting in ’71, Ford did go the V8 route with the Maverick but it was limited to a base level 302 CI V8 which sported just a two-barrel carburetor.

And that’s what this Maverick Grabber used to have, a 143 net HP, 302 CI V8 with an automatic transmission. It’s now a roller and the front end up stance is a bit of an initial clue. Knowing this matter, therefore, I bestow upon this 1972 Ford Maverick “Original Grabber V8” the title of a “yousetabee“.

This Maverick is a Grabber, a sporty trim option that was introduced in its inaugural year of 1970. Specifically, a Grabber added features such as trim rings with hubcaps, tape stripes adorning the flanks, a blacked-out hood panel, color matching racing mirrors, a decklid spoiler, and other trim items. The big news for ’72, however, was the inclusion of two fake hood scoops positioned on either side of the raised hood “blister”. The aforementioned V8 engine was a Grabber option, but not standard equipment. The seller states, “ALL GLASS IS GOOD CONDITION. GRABBER HOOD, HAS RUST IN FLOORBOARDS, REAR QUARTERS AND ROOF. ORIGINALLY HAD A WHITE VINYL ROOF“. Yes, it’s a bit rough.

There are no included images of the interior so I put up this one of the underside – it gives a prospective owner an idea of what they’ll find upon opening either door. The seller does mention that the bucket seats and steering column are missing. This being the case, the interior will require a complete redo along with a parts scrounging exercise.

The listing suggests, “RESTORE OR MAKE A GREAT STREET ROD!” Well, it’s certainly cheap enough but it’s not a very robust subject for any kind of undertaking and better examples can likely be found. As to what this car was at one time – an Original V8 Grabber, it’s irrelevant now, it’s just an old, tired Ford compact. So, what’s your opinion, is there a future for this Maverick or would it be better to let this one rust in peace?

And BTW – I hope everyone is having a very Happy Thanksgiving!


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  1. Motorcityman Member

    Not even much of a parts car being a rusty roller!

    Like 10
  2. Classic Steel

    I guess the one next to it received its donor transplants?

    It could be brought back but it will need a cash infusion.

    Good luck with sale 👍

    Like 5
  3. Chris

    Hmmmmmm a lot of stuff missing

    Like 5
  4. Ben T Spanner

    My friend got a new job with a brand new company car; a V8 Maverick. The first day he had it he goosed to get on the freeway, and the fan ate the radiator. There were no cell phones,so he had to walk down the ramp, find a pay phone, and call hls new boss to say the new guy and just trashed his new car.

    Like 4
    • bobk

      I’d say something, but I’m just laughing too dang hard.

      However, to let you know that you’re not alone, winter of 1973, I was asked to drive my boss’ very much babied Nova SS 396 out to his country place while he followed behind in his pickup. Kansas in January, snow on the 2 lane blacktop and a Nova SS 396. I wasn’t really trying to goose it, but short wheelbase, massive power….I ended up swapping ends right in front of my boss. Now I can laugh about it.

      Like 6
    • Bob S Member

      I had a 75 Chevy Monza with the 262 V-8, all sock and original, and I had the same problem, as soon as you goosed it, the fan would flex into the radiator. At the time, electric fans weren’t that common, but definitely would of solved that problem. That, and the several hours it took to change the plugs, ownership of that particular vehicle was short lived.

  5. CJinSD

    If someone possesses the amazing skills, equipment, and budget it would require to turn this back into a car, wouldn’t they be better off applying their resources to a car that will either be more fun or more valuable when it is completed? That’s not to bash the Maverick Grabber. I’m sure that a Ford sort of enthusiast could have a great time with a light car powered by a Windsor V8. I’m just saying that getting this rusty rolling shell across the finish line is going to have the same opportunity cost as becoming the owner of almost any dream car.

    Like 4
  6. Teh Agent

    In its current condition a restomod would be best. Id put a 2.3l from a Ranger in it and give it a tighter, lower suspension but not quite a lowrider. Theyre good looking cars IMHO, with the 72- smaller bumpers.

    Like 3
  7. Poppy

    I remember two acquaintances in the ’80s who swapped cars even. One guy had a nice ’68 Camaro and the other guy had a nice Maverick Grabber. I couldn’t believe the Camaro owner made the trade.

    Like 5
  8. John S Dressler

    Although a bowtie guy, I’ve always liked the Maverick body style. If I were suddenly inclined to move in that direction and wanted to restore a Maverick, I’d start with a body and interior in much better shape than this one. Then I’d build it “Ford Tough” with “Chevy Stuff”. I’d put a built 327 in the engine bay hooked up to a built 2004R four-speed automatic finished up by a Ford 9 inch posi in a respectable final drive ratio. Paint it up nice with some plain Jane dog dish hubcaps and then go out and surprise the heck out of a bunch of Mustang and Camaro guys!

    Like 2
  9. DON

    The Maverick is based on the Falcon platform, but as a compact, not a sub compact. That was the Pinto. Too bad this one is such a mess ; I’ve always liked the early mavericks and it seemed like everyone had one “back in the day” .They were disposable cars ,and as such, few were repaired and saved when they had issues or rusted out.

    Like 2
  10. Healeymonster

    When I worked at a Lincoln Mercury dealer back in the early eighties our tranny guy (not what it means today) had a beautiful Maverick drag car that he raced every week out at the now defunct Baylands Raceway. Our dealership sponsored him and it was painted two tone red over black. Gorgeous! I wouldn’t mind building a clone of that race car, but this one is too much work to start.

    Like 1

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