In true proto-Hooniverse fashion, Jeff and I were shooting the shit about cars on IM. He’s bored with his Civic, and wants “either an old German wagon or a muscle car”. The solution that’d leave him happiest is obvious: Muscle Wagon. What follows is the result of an exhaustive 45 second search on Craigslist of LA and Orange County. Rust belt dwellers: ready your tears (but don’t let them land on your already rusty cars).
Mildly built 302 and C4, clean-looking (at a distance) paint. 2″ lower with new parts underneath. Needs a few things, but most are easily sourced or included with the car. Compact wagons win the utility/unit volume contest every time, and this one’s got 9 hojillion Mustangs to steal parts from. Aside from those 64-65 Falcon wagon specific bits. For those you’re screwed.
Sitting for decades, not running, but seems mostly intact. Could benefit from some interior shots and more info. It’s got a 6 cylinder (probably a flathead, right?) and overdrive. Kinda goofy looking, but cool in a contrarian way.
That’s a pretty optimistic price for an orphan car with a 6 and 3-on-the-tree in mediocre condition. I’d let it sit for a while (we’re way away from scrap prices) to see what happens to that price. On one hand, the understated drivetrain is appropriate, on the other, a built 401 has a nice ring to it. Also: same bumpers front and rear, how cool is that?
With no engine, no trans, it’s disqualified from “first project car” ownership, but definitely a nice empty slate for the drop-in of your choosing. Supposedly set up for a small block and in possession of all necessary trim, it could be a great classic driver for not too much work. Anything earlier than about ’63 tends to get to some really old automotive tech, often better to completely replace entire systems. Not sure of the actual condition, thanks to what look like cell phone pics of print outs of scanned pictures. Still, it’s got that pure late-50s panache and a decent starting price.
Yeah, yeah, not exactly a muscle wagon. Still, a great simplistic platform fit for beach or dog hauling duty (or dogs to the beach duty!). Has a stick + overdrive, IPD swaybars and some good non-cosmetic work done to make it very usable. All it needs is a turbo 16V 2.3 from a later 740 to really wake things up.
Again with the non-muscle. Whatever. It’s mostly stock with the 1600 and 4 speed. Apparently the owner is very proud of the fact that he topped it out at 108 mph on the freeway. The huge tires probably helped with that, but we’d pull those down to some nice 14″ Panasport (clones) and like 185 or 195 series tires. Interior’s got some newer seats from something and the exterior’s SoCal oxidation-chic. 40mpg with style and utility? Who needs that?
RIP Mercury, we hardly knew ye. Seriously, “Mercury Commuter” doesn’t list high on any list. This is the same platform used by my ’67 Country Sedan (and all ’65-68 Full Size Ford/Mercurys), and actually delivers decent handling for a workhorse wagon. Hopefully it was fitted with a 390 FE motor, as that’s about the best match for a boat like this. Basically no other info in the ad, but it’s nice to know someone in Mercury’s styling department thought curves were for communists.
Best for last, folks. Clean paint, nice stance, 390ci + C6 transmission and a general impression of good upkeep. I can assure you, it’s way more than $500 nicer than the $3000 I sold my wagon for. This one manages to wear some styling and paint that’s very 1970, but does it well. Oddly enough, I’m not sure the 390 was even an option on the bottom-tier Ranch Wagon, but there’s no reason it couldn’t have been swapped in over a weekend. Seriously, if you’re in SoCal looking for a wagon of any kind, this is pretty much the best around.