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Classic YouTube: The 1978 Ford LTD II, Sold By Ron Burgundy Himself

Classic YouTube: The 1978 Ford LTD II, Sold By Ron Burgundy Himself

In the beginning, there was Fairlane. Fairlane begat Torino, Torino begat Elite, and Elite begat LTD II. Ford’s midsizer packed on the pounds almost in time with Elvis himself as the 1970s moved along. What had been some smooth, coke-bottle curves and a menacing, open-intake nose had given way to slab sides that Elwood Engel would be proud of, a penchant for making the driver feel like they were in the most sumptuous interior they could afford on the cheap thanks to the influence of Lee Iacocca, and just about zero cares about performance, either power-wise or otherwise. As GM kicked off their downsizing campaign, as Chrysler found that customers would buy smaller cars in droves (even in their dark times, the “smaller Chrysler” Cordoba and the infamous Aspen/Volar√© twins were the sales leaders), Ford was adamant, to a fault, that bigger was the way to go and flaunted their massive size in advertisements while claiming that downsized cars were short-selling potential buyers.

The LTD II was nothing more than a Torino that had taken a look at the Lincoln Mark V and copied quite a bit of the bodywork. That’s it. 302, 351 or 400, it didn’t matter, they all were pretty dismal…no horsepower worth mentioning and fuel mileage that made the leaders of OPEC nations dance with glee. And yes, this was a “midsize car”, one of the longest to ever make that claim. So how do you sell a car so large to a nation that had fuel supply worries fresh on the mind? Easy: remind them about the good old hot rod days of the late 1950s and 1960s with a sweet period Mercury, then show the public that the LTD II was the…and I quote here…”the trimmer, sportier LTD”. As someone who arrived into the world five years after this commercial was made, I can’t help but look at Mr. Stage Two himself and think that Ron Burgundy is trying to sell me a land yacht I don’t necessarily want. Trimmer? Sportier? Only when compared to the full-fat LTD, maybe. I’d love to see how the 1978 Fairmont sold compared to the LTD II that year…

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2 thoughts on “Classic YouTube: The 1978 Ford LTD II, Sold By Ron Burgundy Himself

  1. David

    My first car was a 77 LTDll. Two door, Mint Green Metallic, quarter vinyl roof, and a 302 Police package under the hood. It scared the hell out of anyone in, a small car in front of me…because the front looked like it was, hungry for a snack. Nothing short of an 18 wheeler, was going to dent it.


    Wish I still had it…it would make a prostreet project.

  2. Igor Shakapopoulis

    Why all the crying about how horrible these are?
    Good design, proven chassis and driveline.
    No worse than anything else out at the same time.
    GM had shrunk the A-body to the size of the original Nova, F-bodies were bloated, underpowered whales, and the fullsizers were now riding the Colonnade car chassis.
    Chrysler had Aspen/Volare rusting out on the dealer’s lots, antennaes falling through the fenders, B-bodye were dying an undignified death, and the E-bodies were cold in the grave.
    Over at AMC, well, everything was Hornet-based, with a Pacer or two thrown in for bad luck.
    Japan was sending us tin cans with lawn mower engines that rusted like Chryslers.

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