Personal Luxury: 1969 Ford Thunderbird

1969 Ford Thunderbird

At first glance, I thought the photo above was an old Ford ad, but then I realized that a few things just weren’t right for a vintage ad. For one, Ford would have never photographed their Thunderbird with a Chrysler or a BMW in the background (at least not without commenting on it). I also noticed the less than stellar condition of these cars, plus a very out of place rooster! It would seem the seller of this 1969 Ford Thunderbird just happens to have a yard full of classic cars and a few chickens. They managed to capture the scene just perfectly, making this one of the most picturesque T-Bird listings I have ever seen. Find the listing and the rest of their pictures here on eBay in Anaheim, California.

1969 Ford Thunderbird Interior

By the time this T-Bird was built, the model had been moved up market significantly in an attempt to carve out a market that was as far away from the Mustang as possible, but without adding any additional doors. They called this market the “Personal Luxury Car Segment” and while it sounded like a good idea, it was never a major success. While these cars were more luxurious than a Mustang or just about any other American two door, it was hard for buyers to justify buying a T-Bird when they could get a Pony car for considerably less money and with more thrills. If luxury was really a concern, the T-Bird offered as much comfort as anything from Lincoln or Cadillac, but with a little extra speed. As you can see this one is very nice on the inside and has minimal wear.

1969 Ford Thunderbird Engine

Moving around all this personal luxury takes a lot of power, so thankfully Ford decided to endow this T-Bird with a big 429 V8. With well over 350 horsepower this car is no slouch, well at least until you decide you need to turn it or slow down. I’m actually surprised this car still has its 429, many of these were stripped of their big blocks for use in Mustangs and Cougars. The seller has already been through the motor, with a full rebuild being completed only a few months ago.

I’m sure this motor does a wonderful job moving all this metal around, but I can’t help think it would be more fun shoehorned into a Mustang or something lighter and smaller. Then again, given how solid and original this T-Bird is, it would be a shame to strip it of its heart. I wish the seller hadn’t spray painted the air filter and valve covers without pulling them out or at least taping them off.

Black Plate Thunderbird

Based on the seller’s photos, this Bird actually looks to be in really good shape. Of course it could just be the photos, so I would want to have it inspected. I would love to see what other cars the seller has in their yard, I see a few interesting cars parked in the backgrounds of their photos. So do you think the seller will be able to find a new home for this car or is their $6k asking price too high?


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  1. jim s

    seller is taking offers and wants to be contacted before you hit the BIN. if a PI shows it is safe to use as a daily drive make the seller an offer ( in the price range that would put it on our other website ). it would make a nice highway runner. i would try to keep rust at bay but would not paint it. the MPG might/would be an issue but you get to drive a 429. great find

  2. geomechs geomechs Member

    I’ve always liked this version of the T-bird. Even better than the Square Birds because this version doesn’t come off as such a barge. Very little to worry about concerning the 429. It moves that car quite well, and isn’t as hard on fuel as some would think, unless you’re inclined to drive with your foot pressed against the rad.

  3. Mike H. Mike H.

    Me? I’m concerned about the matching dents in the hood near the windshield cowl. Is it just me or does it look as though the hood flew open going down the road? I don’t see the secondary tell-tale dents along the top of the hood where the hood met the roof, but it may be that the hood only overextended a little bit. Regardless, that hood, its companion hinges, and whatever inner fender support that they attach to will be difficult to source and potentially expensive. Still, this is very much the sort of project I’ve been looking for and it’s just hideous enough to make my wife exceptionally unhappy.

    I’m all for this.

  4. Randy G.

    I had a ’69 4 door, I loved it. I outran a buch of “muscle cars” with it. I think it is well worth the money, as long as it has not been wrecked. I wonder if it was rebuilt with 11/1 compression. I believe that was the factory specs.

  5. off2hcky

    Unique looking car. My History teacher in middle school (late 80s) had one just like this she drove every day. She was one mean old lady but she did have a cool car.

  6. Martin

    Not too much of a T Bird guy – wondering what plans he has for the 2002….

  7. JimmyinTEXAS

    Not my favorite year model, and vinyl tops, yuck. But this seems a fair price, even with the hood Mike H. pointed out. I would hate to think of it as a daily driver, but weekend cruiser might not be bad idea till it could be sorted and driven enough to become trusted…

  8. Jason

    Ugh, another seller with over-contrasted photos. Makes my eyes hurt. (And of course does a good job of hiding imperfections, especially on light cars.) Like that dealer in Lakeland, FLA who always has cars featured on BaT.

    • Jason

      Wow, I was going to complain about over-contrasted photos that hide paint and body issues. Then I saw someone already did so. Then I saw I was the one who did so (in 2015). Thanks, thread resurrector!

  9. Mark E

    These Thunderbirds were NOT competing with the pony cars. In fact the later models in the early ’70s were based on the Lincoln Continental Mk III. Also if the air cleaner has been repainted, it was long ago, judging by the rust on the top. These were great highway cruisers for back when gas was 29 cents per gallon…

  10. Matt steele

    I like the hideaway headlights

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