Rare Factory Sleeper! 1975 Ford Granada 351

After gas prices broke the 50 cents/gallon mark, folks realized that fuel economy was serious business. Ford touted the Granada as offering room for five in a smaller, more economical package than contemporary full-sized sedans. Furthermore, Ford compared the Granada to European luxury cars like the Mercedes 280. This 1975 Ford Granada in Tampa, Florida features the rare 351 cid (5.8L) V8. With air conditioning, power windows, and other options, but “*not* in the higher-end Ghia trim, it makes an interesting vehicle. After sitting for 25 years it received a fuel system cleansing, new exhaust system, and more. Presumably, it runs, but the always-irritating ALL CAPS listing here on craigslist fails to mention whether or how anything on the car functions. You can find out for the asking price of $6900.

The car sits at a dealership, but would a professional not simply step backwards to bring the entire car into the frame? At least one picture accomplishes this complicated photographic feat. The seller reports a re-spray in base / clear, and the car presents well, though the $8 chrome exhaust tips from K-Mart have got to go. Luckily no one has flipped out seeing the 351 and the dog dish hubcaps and speculated that this was some sort of special police Captain’s car, as we have witnessed in the past.

Compliment the seller for showing the driver’s seat, generally a good indicator of mileage and condition. In this case, the factory seats were ensconced under vinyl that was only recently removed. They look even better than most car seats after 77k. Bucket seats were typical for the European-minded Granada. No evidence or details confirm the Marti report mentioned.

Somewhere under the maze of hoses and wires lies the storied 351W or “Windsor” V8. While the 351C or “Cleveland” often steals the glory with its high-flowing cylinder heads, millions of 351W-powered cars mean cheap and readily-available parts, and the “W” makes the Top Ten Engines of All Time list here at onallcylinders.com. Laugh all you want at the smog-constricted 163 horsepower, but that number can be easily doubled for some real sleeper fun. Picture this car exactly as it sits except with 350 HP, overdrive, police suspension, wider steel wheels, and slightly fatter tires. A competent driver of *that* car could surprise today’s European sedans, let alone those from the ’70s. How would you change this interesting Ford?


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  1. Scotty Gilbertson Staff

    Ha, fantastic find and write-up, Todd! Man, when I clicked on the seller’s listing (my ears are still ringing from all of that yelling – all-caps) and saw them mention “STICK” in the title, I just about jumped out from under my hairpiece! (kidding). A 5-speed in this car would be fantastic, but it’s pretty cool the way it is.The first thing that would change under an SG ownership would be to remove those #$% walmart chrome exhaust extensions, it looks like a winner otherwise.

    Like 14
    • Todd Fitch Staff

      Thanks Scotty! I guess any shift lever looks like a stick if you try hard enough. The real “stick” came in ’76, but not with the 351 as I recall. If my foggy memory holds true, robbing a Lincoln Versailles would get you rear discs. Stick a phone to the windshield and you have better navigation than most factory $1500 units. With these simple controls you won’t drive into a ditch while trying to run the HVAC. Could be interesting.

      Like 6
      • Superdessucke

        The Versailles got you not only rear discs but the Ford 9-inch rear end. The car was the queen of the junkyard for a while because of that.

        Like 11
      • CCFisher

        A ’79 Versailles rear has been under my 1968 Mustang convertible for 20 years.

        Rear disc brakes were optional on Granada and Monarch, but I’m not sure which model years.

        Like 6
    • Eugene A

      No clue why it says stick because all of the pics clearly show an automatic T-handle and 2 pedals.

  2. Rhett

    Cool, but not so cool when you consider you could get a better 350 in any of the GM X-Bodies of the era: Buick Apolllo, Nova, Omega, Ventura. Or a 360 Aspen! Don’t get me wrong, I like this car a lot but it’s only Fords fault that this is rare. The other manufacturers were cranking ‘em out..

    Like 2
  3. glen

    “cop motor, cop suspensions, cop tires, cop shocks”

    Like 18
    • Scott

      Cop glasses, cop mustache!

      Like 8
  4. Troy s

    408 stroker, 5 speed, lose the out of place exaust tips and there you go, Gator McCluskys all new moonshine hustler for the late seventies. Got to love that plain with a purpose look.
    Best looking Ford Granola I’ve ever seen, everything but the overly busy engine compartment….what a mess.

    Like 7
    • jerry z

      I totally agree with those mod! Nothing like driving a more door car with a stick!

      Like 3
    • Superdessucke

      Amen! I would endeavor to make this thing so fast that I’d need to also screw a toilet paper holder onto the front passenger door panel. I would want it to make a Hellcat look relatively sedate.

      Like 7
  5. Camaro Joe

    Guys, give the seller a break on the chrome WalMart exhaust tips. They’re the same as “Jegs” and “Summit Racing” stickers on the windows. Every 18 year old knows that they take 3/10 of a second off your quarter mile ET.

    In my 20’s I put a “Ceibe Lights” sticker on my Hoover vacuum cleaner and I’m sure it worked much better. 40 years later I put the stickers on my floor jacks and the tool boxes at work.

    I do admit to having an “Air Lift” sticker in the back window of Dad’s old 84 Chevy 4×4, but it really does have Air Lifts in case I need to haul a car trailer.

    Like 7
  6. Bob_in_TN Bob_in_TN Member

    I think Ford did an excellent job styling, packaging, and (especially) marketing the Granada. It hit its spot, and no one knew its humble Falcon underpinnings.

    Interesting car. I like the blackwall/ hub cap look, but if one was looking for the stock look I seem to remember that all Granadas came with full wheel covers. The Marti report would be a great addition, but I didn’t see it in the CRAIGSLIST AD. Not much chance of seeing another one at Cars & Coffee.

    Like 5
  7. Skorzeny

    I don’t really like Granadas all that much, but this is COOL! The black walls with the steel wheels and hubcaps, PERFECT!

    Like 7
  8. TB

    Try to keep tires on it. It doesn’t track right. Been there.

    Like 1
    • KarlS

      I believe it was the Michelin tires that came on some models that had treads that matched the rain grooves in the roads and would cause the car to hunt around.Simply changing over to another brand of tires seem to fix it at least that’s what we did at the dealer I worked out at the time.

  9. Ian C

    Back when I was bracket racing every weekend (mid-90’s) there was a local guy with a brown Granada with a 6cyl and auto. His dial in was, I believe, 19 second range in the 1/8th. He was points champ for multiple years. He would just put it in drive and floor it. Everyone, including myself, would be watching him go to about half track before the tree would go green. I “ran out” numerous times trying to win against him. Aggravating as all heck at the time. But now it’s hilarious to think about. I guess when you are bracket racing in street class consistancy is all that matters. HAHA

    Like 16
    • Troy s

      That’s too funny, 19 seconds in the eighth?? I believe it though, similar situations all over I suppose. Like the green early seventies F250 that was a consistent winner when Carlsbad Raceway was open. Actually the built 460 got the truck into the thirteens in the quarter but the 11 thru nine second cars were always chasing him down….and losing. Consistency and cheating at the end always pay off. Sandbaggers! Ha

  10. David

    Goodness… yes, the best looking granada sedan, color, and option array on the planet. I recall these front ends were pretty weak. It would be fun to tweak the overall performance and presentation of this one. In the end, its only worth so little, except to the few who really dig this sort of look, and they won’t pay much for it either. Going to be a labor of love. It needs earlier year ford motor company dog dishes. At least the owner did put dual exhaust on it; yes lose the chrome tips.

    Like 3
  11. Chris M.

    Old friend of mine had one he put a 351 Cleveland in back in the 80s. The motor was out of a 72 Torino and it was “cammed up” lol. The “Grenade” was a hard runner.

    Like 3
  12. DonziDon

    I think at one point my dad had the worlds largest Granada collection with 2 LOL This was the first car I drove when I turned 16 in 1989. It 1976 was a 4 door 302V8 automatic. It had beautiful period correct dark brown metallic paint with a tan landau roof. I added an audiovox radio and Krayco 6×9 speakers that I sourced from KMart It wasn’t the prettiest gal at the dance but it sure beat walking. The other Granada was also a 1976 and was a 4 door 302V8 auto that was all white with red interior. My dad actually paid to have it shipped up from FLA to CT. My grandmother totaled it several years later. The Granada actually rode nice and had lots of options A/c and had a huge trunk which fit lots of people into when you were sneaking in to the drive in and also could kit a 1/2 keg and lots of cases of beer as I recall. The front bench seat was huge and my high school girlfriends sure seemed to like it! This one is sentimental for me for sure. I would be interested in this one if I had more info on it so I just messaged the seller to see what else he can provide. Wish it was a 2 door but come on how many days do you wake up and see a 1 of 1 Granada for sale lol

    Like 3
  13. JCA

    I like it…what car dealer doesn’t know what stick means? Or is it an attempt at click bait

    Like 1
  14. Superdessucke

    I’m gonna guess in this guise, no one would mistake it for a Mercedes!

    Like 1
  15. David G

    A special ordered car. Nice to see non Ghia models with bucket seats, floor shift, and power windows. Original owner should have sprung for AM/FM stereo, and heated rear window. Awesome that it doesn’t have a vinyl top. Rear discs were optional on ’76-’77 Granadas and Monarchs. Console is optional too, but not present on this one. Saw several 4 door Granadas/Monarchs in Japan with buckets, console and floor shift. Optional here that way as well, but almost never seen in the 4 doors.

    Like 1
  16. Normsled

    Did anyone else see the TASCA FORD emblem on the truck? They were huge drag racers in the Northeast. Wonder who ordered this spec?

    Like 3
  17. Howard Kerr

    For the true sleeper look, ditch the blackwalls and tiny hubcaps for a decent, sticky, set of whitewalls and a set of the standard wheelcovers. As for the exhaust tips: keep one for that “I’m a kid who wishes my grannymobile was fast” look, while tucking the other tip under the rear bumper just out of sight.

    I live in Florida and I have to say that for what this car is….under 7 grand sounds too good to be true.

  18. Frank

    Those are the same hubcaps that my Dad’s 1973 Maverick had. I think they are pretty cool looking.

  19. JoeNYWF64

    Floor shift with no console is odd in ANY “luxury” car.
    Those are different types of springs holding up the hood, compared to earlier ones. Do those have an advantage over the older ones(which never wear out!!)?
    Still can’t understand why EVERY vehicle SINCE doesn’t use either!
    How heavy could either design be? Ridiculous!
    Oh wait – forgot “someone” later got greedy & switched to PROFIT MAKING gas struts that WILL fail – & then everyone else followed, or used a dumb ancient prop rod to save money. Sure would like to know who started the strut changeover.

  20. Mitchell Ross Member

    There never was a Police suspension for the Granada since Ford didn’t have Falcon based police package cars (in the US) The hubcaps are Maverick. If I was buying this car, I’d put a set of Lincoln LSC BBS style wheels with the gold centers on it.

  21. Miguel

    $6900 for a Granada. I never thought I would see the day, especially not one with Maverick hub caps.

  22. mackey4cars john mackey

    max smith had a 1978 ford granada 4dr it was brown.

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