Parked Since 1982: 1968 Ford Torino

When I first looked at this 1968 Ford Torino Hardtop, I really struggled to spot its single most outstanding feature. This is not because it doesn’t have one, but more because it has so many. This is a one-owner vehicle. That owner was your stereotypical little old lady. Then there is the fact that the Torino has been parked since that owner passed away in 1982. Probably the icing on the cake is the fact that the original owner managed to accumulate a mere 34,000 original miles in the Torino before her untimely passing. The original owner’s grandson has decided that the time has come for the Torino to go to a good home, so he has listed it for sale here on Craigslist. The Ford is located in Jacksonville, Florida, and the seller has set the sale price at what appears to be a very reasonable $5,500. I do need to take the opportunity to thank Barn Finder Steve P for referring this great classic to us.

Before I tackle the story of this car, I will take the opportunity to address the elephant in the room. The photos aren’t that great, and if the date stamp is correct, then they are also more than 18-months-old. A lot can happen in that time period, but we just have to work with what we’ve got. The Torino is finished in Wimbledon White with a Raven Black roof. The paint and panels wear a few minor marks and dings, but there is nothing that could be considered to be particularly bad visible in the photos. The vehicle has been garage-kept all of its life, and this has no doubt contributed to the fact that the Torino is said to be free of anything beyond some mild surface corrosion. It would seem that the next owner isn’t going to need to expend any energy on cutting and welding. The minor dings and dents extend to items such as the rear bumper. It has a pretty sizeable bend on the driver’s side, but it certainly isn’t bent to the point where it is beyond repair. In all honesty, it would be really interesting to give the Ford a wash and polish just to see how it responded. I think that there’s every chance that it would look quite presentable once that process was completed.

It would seem that our little old lady might have had some gasoline coursing through her veins. The entry-level engine in a ’68 Torino was the 200ci 6-cylinder, producing 115hp. She decided to forego that engine, while the 289 and the 302 also apparently weren’t up to the task for her. What she chose was the 390ci V8, and I believe that this is the 265hp version. Of course, if she was really serious, then there was a 325hp version available if she felt so inclined. This particular vehicle also features a 3-speed automatic transmission and power steering. In its prime, this package would have been capable of delivering a ¼ mile ET of 16.1 seconds, which tends to indicate that this was one lady who liked to live life in the fast lane. After she passed away, the Torino was parked in this garage, and apparently, it hasn’t moved since. The 390 was kicked into life occasionally to keep the fluids moving, but this hasn’t happened for a while. However, if that engine is in decent health, then it might not take much more than a weekend’s tinkering to coax it back to life. Of course, there will undoubtedly be plenty of other mechanical components that will require attention before the car could be considered to be roadworthy, but getting it running is a pretty important first step. It is also worth considering the fact that the Torino only saw 14-years of active service before the owner passed away. It is a bit hard to read, but I believe that the odometer is showing 34,747 miles, and I tend to believe the seller when he claims that the mileage is original.

The interior of the Torino is where the next owner is potentially going to be able to make an impact with little more than some time and effort. It features Black vinyl upholstery, and this looks to be in fantastic condition. The same would appear to be true of the dash and pad, which are free of cracks and splits, and house the original radio and optional clock. It is impossible to see the carpet or the headliner, but if the condition of the rest of the interior is an accurate gauge, then both should be in good order. Keeping it short and sweet, I believe that a solid few days inside the Torino with some decent cleaning products could have the interior presenting in as-new condition.

Occasionally a classic car will come along where the original owner has passed away, and you really wish that you had been fortunate enough to have met that owner. For me, that is the case with this Torino. I wish that I had been given the opportunity to discuss the vehicle with her, and to gain an understanding of why she chose to purchase a car that is in no way the stereotypical vehicle that you would expect a lady in the autumn years of her life to buy. Failing that, I hope that someone can grab this classic and return it to active duty because I am sure that this is what the original owner would have wanted.

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Comments

  1. Moparman Member

    My personal preference is the 69 version, but I wouldn’t kick this one out of my garage! GLWTA! :-)

    Like 6
  2. Fred W

    Had one just like it as a teenager with a 302. It was one sweet ride and I wish I were closer to Jacksonville and had a free spot in the garage.

    Like 3
  3. Steve R

    The flipper that bought my moms old car also advertised it as being one owner, his grandmother who passed away.

    This is a non-running car that spent its life on New Jersey roads. There isn’t a shred of proof, other than a picture of the speedometer, to back up the mileage claim. There are no decent pictures of any areas prone to rust. For those reasons the car is overpriced. The asking price would be reasonable if the seller got it running and cleaned it up, but he didn’t.

    With the economy tanking, flippers will actually need to put effort into selling their cars or lower the price, probably both.

    Steve R

    Like 21
    • DayDreamBeliever Member

      Uh-huh. Sat in a garage forever, that’s why it is covered in needles from a white pine tree. I’ll never understand taking the air filter apart prior to snapping the photos, unless you want to show the carb.

      The date/time stamps on the photos are the same, and all were shot within 3 minutes? Oh, the dates, wellll… I dunno how to change that?

      Like 5
  4. FordGuy1972 FordGuy1972 Member

    Overall, this looks like a pretty nice car especially if it is as rust-free as the seller claims. It’s the top trim level for Ford’s intermediate in ’68, it sports a big-block and it apparently has low miles so there’s a lot to like here. It seems like some enthusiastic cleaning and polishing could have this Torino looking pretty good. Freshen up the mechanicals along with replacing the perishable bits and you’ll have a really nice car. I don’t think the price is out of line; it seems fair for a sporty two-door with a big block.

    It’s too far away from me and I don’t have the room but I’m still tempted. I had two ’68 Torinos, a four-door sedan and a two-door coupe. They were both small blocks with auto trans but they made for nice daily drivers and were dependable and reasonably economical to drive every day.

    Like 1
  5. Bell

    I love this kind of ad. Pretty bad pix of a really cool car that just might be as low mileage as the seller claims. What I can see of the body looks great, and the interior looks like it would clean up beautifully with very little effort. And it’s a really handsome interior to boot. Plus the absence of speaker holes cut into the door panels or rear deck suggests it probably was a little old lady car all it’s life.

    This sort of understated body style always appealed to me, but even more so now that I’m an older dude. This would be a great sleeper if you wanted to get a little crazy with the drive train. I also like that the roof is painted and not vinyl.

    Obviously the dearth of good pictures makes close inspection necessary, but any smart buyer would do that anyway. His price is ambitious, but what the heck. That’s why God made haggling. If I were in the market I’d be super interested in this car!

    Like 4
  6. JCA

    Nice cruiser for $5k

    Like 1
  7. Gaspumpchas

    Agreed on the pine needles, you would think that since the guy said the car has been inside all its life, he’d at least clean them off. No good pics of anything here. Really need to see the underbelly, hope someone who really wants this gets it. That will roast the hides if you are inclined to do so. Sleeper material, leave it alone pop a 4 barrel and a mild cam in it. Good luck to the new owner.
    Cheers
    GPC

    Like 3
  8. Gary

    What a cool car! I bought my ’68 Fairlane 500 Convertible in 1983, from a retired Doctor. I kept in touch with her, for many years. She passed away in 2005. It’s candy apple red, with darker red interior. I have had a blast driving, the car. Always dependable, and loads of fun. It’s almost like family. 3,278 were produced in ’68.

    Like 2

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