Straight-Six Survivor: 1976 Ford Maverick

Ford struck gold with the Mustang in 1964 and repeated that success five years later with the Maverick, the successor to the aging compact Falcon. Ironically, both those autos owe their roots to the Falcon which spawned many a car over its 11-year run. This 1976 Maverick looks like a nice survivor that may only need a new front seat cover to carry it on to infinity. At 149,000 miles, this Maverick just keeps on keeping on, here on craigslist and in Springfield, Missouri. Asking price: $6,500 (thanks for the tip, Pat L.!).

The Maverick was in production for eight years with only minimal changes from year to year. The most noticeable may have been when larger bumpers were mandated by the Federal government. Ones like on the seller’s car almost look like picnic table benches as they jut out so far. More than two million Mavericks were built in total, but sales trailed off after 1974 when Ford introduced the Granada, the Maverick’s successor. The Granada was less plain than the Maverick and both cars were built during 1975-77 until the Maverick folded. The name was recently brought out of mothballs to be worn on a small new Ford pickup.

This ’76 Maverick looks like a solid runner. It’s said to be original but runs well at 149,000 miles. The car is powered by Ford’s venerable inline-6, a 250 cubic inch motor. The seller just returned from a longer trip on the interstate and the car performed well. Some new parts have been installed to ensure its continued reliability, including muffler (glass pack?), alternator, voltage regulator, coil, ignition module, and radiator. New to the Mavericks that year were front disc brakes (which became standard equipment) and a foot-operated parking brake that replaced the old under-dash T-handle ones.

The body and paint look good on this car, as does the interior which seems to have vents in the dash for factory air conditioning. No rust seems to have found a way to take hold of this mid-‘70s machine. Other than some separation of the fabric on the front seat bottom, everything else appears tidy. Mavericks top out at $12,000, according to Hagerty, so the seller has priced this one in the middle. Turn-key, this could be a nice second car or one for Cars & Coffee if you don’t mind parking in the non-muscle cars section.


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  1. Milt

    At the risk of sounding ignorant, why do so many Barn find and Bat photos show the vehicle with “blocked out” license plates? There is probably some practical reason for this and I suspect many other readers would also like to know.

    Like 8
    • Jack M.

      Most individuals today are concerned about scammers and identity theft. They cover up the license plate in the belief that their ad is safer.

      Like 8
    • Motorcityman Member

      They don’t want people to illegally run their plate to find out where they live ti possibly steal the vehicle…….don’t thing they have much to worry about with a smog laden 6 banger Maverick. 😁
      A Boss 429……maybe!

      Like 6
      • Tony Primo

        Licensing offices won’t give out a registered owners address unless it is to law enforcement. Too many perverts following pretty girls could result in serious problems.

        Like 6
      • Rick

        Some jokers will steal anything that they happen to see.

      • John Revels

        What capacity do they have to run a plate????

      • John Revels

        And how do they run tags! Even as a police officer i couldn’t just run a plate for the heck of it! Now that i am retired i have no way to do it either!

    • James

      Car sale apps here in Australia automatically blur the plate – thieves clone plates of similar vehicles to go “under the radar” to steal fuel at petrol stations / commit crimes

      Like 7
    • Troy

      In some cases you can enter your license plate into Google maps or other searches and it will give you the address of where its at.

      • John Revels

        If this is something that is open to the public you will have to let me know! As a retired police officer i know of no way for a civilian to run license tags! You can contact me via messenger on my Facebook page and fill me in!

    • Troy

      Because you can find where the car is registered and the owners information by the license plate if the vehicle had been registered

      • John Revels

        How? The number on the plate doesn’t tell you that info. When I was a police officer I could have dispatch run it but only in the course of my official duties! Joe Blow has no way to do that! Plus it is displayed on the vehicle for the whole world to see

        Like 5
    • Psychofish2

      Good old fashioned paranoia.
      Motor Trend used to publish random license plates and give out a prize if it was one of their reader’s numbers.
      Like the Craigs List Finger that always pops up in the ads.
      FFS that plate is broadcast to the world 24 hours a day and everywhere one drives 365 days a year.
      I’ve had stickers stolen off my plates right outside my house.

      Like 1
      • Motorcityman Member

        Like I said, when u drive around everyone isn’t looking for cars or parts to steal. If u were a crook would u waste your time driving around or would it be easier to sit on your PC and scan some local For Sale sites?
        Tip for u on the stolen tag stickers……mine used to disappear once in a great while until I took 30 seconds to slice em a few times with a razor blade, never had one disappear since, can’t reuse em if they’re in a bunch of pieces.

        Like 1
  2. Motorcityman Member

    And it’s brown with a tan interior……another theft deterrent. 😄

    Like 18
  3. Dave, Aust

    We had the Ford 221/250s here in Australia, with a twin exhaust and extractors they sounded almost like a V8. The Valiant 265 never did sound as good. Different compression perhaps?

    Like 2
  4. Motorcityman Member

    HEY TONY……I said “illegally run the plate” not legally, that’s why they’re criminals……or a cop buddy that will run the plate for u and there’s other sources…….

    • John Revels

      I would have been in big trouble if I had done that outside of my official capacity!

      Like 1
    • Stevieg Member

      I manage an auto repair shop. When a new customer comes in, all I have to do is enter their plate number & the state where the plate is from and the customers name & address self populate on my computer. It isn’t always accurate, but it is accurate often enough that it’s creepy.

  5. Chris Webster

    I can’t unsee that monstrosity of a front bumper.

    Like 3
    • chuck

      The 70-72’s weren’t bad looking, but these guardrail bumpers are hideous.

      Like 1
  6. Howie Mueler

    But when you are out driving around everybody can see your plate. Here again no engine photos.

    Like 2
  7. John Revels

    I always get a kick out of people covering up their license plates in the ads! And yet drive around with them displayed on the vehicle for the whole world to see. Even as a police officer(I retired 21 years ago) I wasn’t allowed to run plates for the heck of it, only in the official course of business! Someone needs to explain to me what the end game us by doing this!

    Like 3
    • Motorcityman Member

      Everyone driving around isn’t looking for cars to steal, that’s the difference.
      Makes sense if your looking for parts for a certain car or a whole car to steal u might check out FOR SALE sites.

  8. WayneS

    The gripe I had with Ford back then was they came out with these variants on the Falcon but didn’t follow through. They had a two door and a four door but NO WAGON!!! A shooting brake style Maverick would have had the best looks of compact wagons of the time..

    Like 1
  9. Frank

    Can you say Coyote?

    Like 3
  10. Fred

    Love the cloth insert pattern! Not a bad looking ride, but a bit overpriced-especially compared to that 66 Chevy!

  11. Terry

    Some separation of the fabric on the front seat? I call that a HOLE! Also, the front bumper’s valence was replaced with a white one. It should have been brown, as they were body color. It might have been in a collision at some point.

    Like 2
  12. Motorcityman Member

    John Revels.
    Don’t know how they do it but I knew a cop in L.A. that ran one for me, so it can be done.

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