Nicely Restored 1969 Ford Ranchero 302

There are times when I look at vehicles like this 1969 Ranchero, and I wonder how a new version would sell if Ford were to produce it. Would it be a massive sales hit, or would it be a dud? If the classic market is any indication, it could potentially receive pretty solid support from the new car buying public. Because this is unlikely to happen in the near future, it makes vehicles like our feature Ranchero worth a closer look. This one is a spotless survivor that features its original V8 under the hood. It presents superbly and would suit the most fastidious buyer. If you fit that mold, you will find the Ranchero located in Lake Placid, Florida, and listed for sale here on eBay. Intense bidding has pushed the price to $15,900, but this figure remains short of the reserve.

The owner describes this Ranchero’s panels as mint and laser straight, and it is hard to argue with that description. The vehicle has come off a recent restoration, making its impeccable presentation easy to understand. The panel gaps are tight and consistent, and there is no evidence of any prior accident damage. Possibly the best news revolves around the question of rust. The panels are as clean as you are ever likely to find, while the owner says the underside is spotlessly clean and in as-new condition. It wears a fresh coat of black, but all of the original factory welds and joints are clearly visible. It sounds pretty confidence-inspiring for any potential buyers. The Meadowlark Yellow paint shines beautifully, with no visible chips or flaws. The paint in the bed is equally impressive, while the trim and chrome are immaculate. The car features tinted glass, and this is in as-new condition. The GT-style wheels are a perfect finishing touch to this exterior, helping this Ranchero make an impressive visual statement.

Lifting the hood reveals this Ford’s numbers-matching 302ci V8 backed by a three-speed automatic transmission. The Ranchero is also equipped with power steering and power front disc brakes. This V8 would have produced 220hp and 300 ft/lbs of torque when it was shiny and new. It has received a few performance upgrades, including an Edlebrock intake and carburetor, an MSD ignition system, and aftermarket headers that feed a custom dual exhaust fitted with Flowmasters. It would be safe to assume that this 302 now produces significantly more power than when it was new. The engine bay presents superbly, with everything appearing spotlessly clean. The owner has installed many new parts, and the original labels remain intact on many of these components. His attention to detail extends beyond the engine bay, with the suspension also receiving recent TLC. The owner doesn’t indicate how well this classic runs or drives, but the news should be pretty positive with so many new components and a recent restoration under its belt.

Turning our attention to the interior, we find another area of this Ford that is difficult to criticize. It is trimmed in beige vinyl, which complements the exterior paint perfectly. The upholstered surfaces appear to be free from any wear or physical damage. It looks like the Ranchero may have received a new carpet set as part of the restoration because there is no evidence of scuffs or fading, The dash looks crisp and clean, and the crack-prone pad is perfect. The original radio remains intact, although the owner has installed an FM converter. There is also an 8-track player mounted under the dash and a column-mounted Sunpro tach. Potential buyers will not need to spend a dime on this interior.

We should never say “never,” but I think but there are minimal chances that Ford will ever develop a new Ranchero. With many manufacturers turning their attention towards zero-emission vehicles, light pickups like the Ranchero would be a low priority. That means it is left to examples like our feature vehicle to fill the void. When it comes to the question of void fillers, this one is a beauty. When you look at its overall condition, it’s easy to see why the bidding has been so spirited. However, I think it may have a little way to go before it hits the reserve. I suspect it will have to head well north of $20,000 before this happens. I think that it will easily achieve that figure. Don’t you?

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Comments

  1. nlpnt

    That’s basically what the new Maverick is, although it’s more of a spiritual successor to the 1960-generation economy Ranchero than the musclecar-era one.

    Like 7
    • Pleease

      I have a Honda Ridgeline (my second) which reminds me of the Ranchero and El Camino in terms of being a truck/car hybrid. Works out well with modem unibody construction.

      Like 1
    • Roy

      Zero comparison, you are comparing 2 vehicles with 2 doors and 6′ beds to one with an eXtra set of doors and 4.5′ bed.

  2. Todd Zuercher

    Looks like a beautiful car and a nice engine but boy, that universal flex upper radiator hose is always the automotive equivalent of sweatpants to me – it just tells the world you’ve given up. A proper molded hose would really finish off the engine compartment.

    Like 16
    • Stan

      Exactly true why have a bunk hose like that

      Like 4
      • Steve R

        In many cases direct fit radiator hoses are either not listed in catalogs or not in stock. Many online sites don’t show specific applications for a given engine size. In that case, the of the car owner needs to know the size of both the radiator and thermostat outlet, neither of which are readily available. At that point, there are two options, hope to find something close in the manufacturers illustrated guide, and hope it’s in stock or spend 30 minutes with the customer in the back room looking through hoses hanging on the wall so they can purchase half a dozen hoping to find one that fits when they get them home. When I worked in auto parts, those were the two best options, most owners gave up and bought the universal hose because they didn’t want to put in the effort.

        Steve R

        Like 9
  3. Sam Shive

    Clean Sweet Ride, My little sister had one like this and found out that it wasn’t able to jump RAILROAD Tracks like the GENERAL LEE, When she landed it the oil pan was busted and you couldn’t open the doors. Pulled the engine and trans. Scrapped the body.

    Like 5
  4. Domenic DAlessandro

    Little sister? You sure it was your little sister? Beautiful ride.

    Like 2
    • Sam Shive

      Yup, I was deployed at the time.

      Like 3
      • 370zpp 370zpp Member

        One has to wonder how many people tried those “Duke Boy” stunts over the years and how often they resulted like this?

        Like 2
  5. Jeff Boyd

    The 1968-69 Ranchero body style is one of my favorites along with 70-71. I had a 1968 in high school. 302 with C4 tranny, bronze exterior and parchment interior. A lot of good times in that car. I sold it in about 1977 and the last time I saw it was in front of an abandoned gas station with the front end crushed from an unfortunate meeting with a cow (this was agricultural country in SE Idaho). Sad ending.

    Like 1
  6. Lowell Peterson

    So disappointed that the bidders on these seldom seen really nice cars expect to buy them for the cost of a restoration quality paint job!
    Sad to watch really.

    Like 2
  7. Joe Haska

    Steve, I have done the hose search’s on every car I have built. Did it just a month or so ago. It took me two parts store’s searching their inventory until I found something that would work. I would rather have no hoses, than one of those curly cue things. It shows you don’t know what your doing.

    Like 2
  8. Fred W

    As a kid in middle school in 1973, I felt like the coolest kid in school when my dad pulled up to pick me up in his identical (but baby blue) ’69 Ranchero. Lotsa memories here.

    Like 1
  9. Buddy

    Just curious how it can be a “survivor” when it has been restored🤷🏻‍♂️

    Like 2
    • Bob S

      I know I’m gonna receive a lot of negative comments for this, but, if it’s still around, then it’s a survivor! 😂

      Like 1
  10. GeorgeL

    GM came closest to reviving the coupe utility in the US in 2009 with the Pontiac G8 ST concept, but then pulled the plug shortly before discontinuing Pontiac altogether. That would have been a rebadged version of the Holden Commodore Ute.

    A company in Colorado imports these and converts them to left hand drive. I own one of their conversions and if the reaction I get at car shows is any indication, I think GM would have done well to bring this car back when the Chevrolet SS was brought over from Australia.

    Ford had it’s counterpart already in production in Australia as the Falcon Ute. It’s a shame neither company had the guts to bring them over. One of them would have done well, even if it would have been a relatively niche product.

    If Ford decides to offer the Maverick in a 2-door, I suppose that’s the closest we’ll get to the Ranchero in modern times.

  11. chrlsful

    “…to bring them over…”
    “…Would it be a massive sales hit…”? in ur country. They want suvs w/4 doors here, ck our rds (least here, I guess MT, ID, S & ND and a few – p/u are “all you see”).

    I really like the lill one (’60/6) and the fairlane (stacked hdlghts) model.

    On hoses – I believe there’s some “wid da bumps” (as seen above) OEM, no? Some one who’s ‘brought this back’ to this detail gets their choice I’d say.

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