Thursday, March 10, 2016

Seattle Craigslist Cornucopia: American Land Barge Edition

Thanks to the fracking revolution, gas has never been cheaper.  So, you owe yourself a big old American Barge from the 1970's.  At this point, it won't break the bank - at least in fuel costs.  Here's a sampling of Land Yachts available in the Seattle area on Craigslist.  

First up is this 1980 Oldsmobile Cutlass Brougham for $5,200 in Vancouver, WA. Nothing says malaise more than metallic beige, and with 59,000 miles on the clock, it's worth shouting about IN ALL CAPS. 

Maybe you need a little more room for your family.  Here's a 1977 Plymouth Volare Wagon in Renton, WA for $2,000.   You don't see pedestrian people haulers in orange anymore.

If you wanted luxury in the 70's, you went for the personal luxury coupe.  Here's a 1976 Ford Thunderbird Coupe in Langley, BC for $5,500.  It's another low mileage example with 59K on the odometer.  Be sure to click thru to the listing to see the RED interior.

Maybe you need four doors, but an orange wagon isn't your style.  Here's a 1978 Mercury Marquis in Chehalis, WA for $5,500.  It's yet another low mileage oldster car with 33,000 miles and its original 8-track.

We will end our survey of Seattle barges with a 1978 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham for sale in West Seattle for $4,000.  Somehow seems appropriate to park it on a boat launch.  I think the bumpers on this weigh more than my daily driver.

See a better dinosaur worth saving on your local Craigslist? email us here:

Gianni is Daily Turismo's Pacific Northwest correspondent. He prefers skiffs over dreadnoughts. 


  1. A friend of mine and I once picked up The Reverend Horton Heat and his girlfriend in a Brown Brougham to play a show in Santa Barbara. He was pretty cranky in the car ride however after we bought him a few Jager shots he warmed up like a teddy bear.

    1. He was probably expecting a Galaxie 500.

  2. Gotta be the Caddy or the Merc. They're the only two big enough to really qualify.

  3. My Dad had a Gutless Cutlass with the 231 v-6 i hear the 260 is a DOG also.

    1. Yes, the 260 was unbelievably gutless. My first car was a 78 Cutlass with that god-awful engine. My buddy had a Duster with a slant six and he could run away from me.

      I learned to drive on a 79 Fleetwwod Brougham so that's the one for me, especially with the 425 c.i. Caddy V8.

    2. The stutter-fire 231 made a whole 90HP or something. GM's strategy back in the day was geared toward making sure the low-end product was bad enough that you'd buy something more expensive if you could. In the end, it just chased everyone off to other brands.

      The B- and C-body cars like that Cadillac were not bad for the time, though they had some of the slipperiest tires known to man.

  4. Too bad about the missing trim pieces (and the missing words) on the Plymouth Volare. My wife would love that car, but the missing trim would drive her nuts and I suspect they're unobtanium.

    But missing words? It's the internet, not the paper classifieds in 1983 where you pay per word. Use more words, they don't take away days of your life.

  5. The Olds and the Cadillac were actually downsized from their previous editions. Memory says those Cadillacs actually had aluminum bumpers, but I may be entering senility.

    '78-whatever A/G-body GM products like that Olds conflated some of the worst assembly quality in GM history (and that's saying something) with some of the cheesiest, most thrifted parts ever used in a car, they were complete junk but it always amazes me how many of those things have survived.

    The Volare was, in fact, the Mopar compact entry back in the day. Yeah, a 4000lb compact, but that's what Detroit was doing.

    The Ford entries here are the only two true land-barges, unrepentant biggest-of-their-breed products. The Thunderbird is especially egregious, having the interior room of an E30 in a roadgoing footprint of a (real AM General/H1) Hummer.

    1. I will admit to a weakness for the old Aspen/Volare, not that they were really any good but they were at least a useful, squarish shape you could see out of, the hood (atypically for Detroit product of the time) wasn't a prototype for a new class of aircraft-carrier flight deck, and they had reasonable interior room.


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