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Wheels in the Grass

'77 Ford Thunderbird, Lewiston, N.Y.

Downsizing finally caught up with a once very popular but fading personal luxury coupe when this 1977 Ford Thunderbird hit the showroom. A car almost a foot shorter and almost a half-ton lighter than its predecessor made for a hefty sales increase: 1976 sales were just shy of 53,000 units, while the new 1977 coupe and Town Landau combined for over 318,000. A $2,700 price reduction probably didn’t hurt much either, with the new ’77s starting at $5,063. The new Town Landau was a bit pricier at almost eight grand, and included just about every option imaginable from the disco era: velour seats, a 22K gold-finish plaque engraved with the owner’s name, etched opera windows, a color-coded translucent hood ornament… hard to believe the 8-track tape player was an extra-cost option (as were Wide-Oval tires!). This base-model hardtop has been sitting in various states of disrepair in a Lewiston driveway for a while now.

the Town Landau

as plain as they got in '77

— Jim Corbran, You Auto Know

  • Joseph Coppola


  • Max

    I think those were lost years for the T-Bird; they had very little differentiation from the rest of Ford’s full size models.

  • Jim Corbran

    There were a “few” lost years for the T-Bird. Some would say they began when Ford added a back seat in 1958. Or a pair of back doors in 1967. The final blow just may have been the $40,000 sticker price on the last T-Birds which debuted in 2002.