Tuesday, June 14, 2016

A Rant: 1980 Ford Fairmont 2-Door

by Kevin -- First off, just look at this thing. What are those, 12 inch wheels? Ask any first-grader to draw a car and they will give you something more exciting than this. It’s so boring, it couldn’t entertain a thought. It’s fitting that such a sad looking car would also have a sad little engine. 200 cubic inches of despair. Bolted to a 3 speed automatic to suck out whatever life it may have had in it. I hope the original owner got a 36 month prescription of Prozac to go with his payment book. Click at your own risk: 1980 Ford Fairmont 2 Door Sedan offered for $4,500 in Earlysville, VA via craigslist.


Look at the shut lines on that door. Best case, it’s been wrecked and re-assembled in the seller’s driveway. It’s more likely that it rolled down the line that way and nobody gave damn. Why would they? Look at that thing! It’s like Ford was trying to build an American Lada. Speaking of Soviet styling and build quality, take a look at the “instrument cluster”.


There is so much going on in this picture. There are scales on either side of the fuel gauge. But no needles, no enumeration. You know why? Because you can’t afford extra needles and numbers, you miserable proletariat cockroach! Every time you look down you will be reminded of your place! The turn signal lever and whatever lever is behind it are both rusting. Seriously, what did they plate that with? The gear shift is holding up nicely though. It must have been accidentally double-dipped.



Now on to the seller. The dash top is covered with tool tray liner. What could possibly be under there, that the appearance is improved with this stuff? And the handy flossers! Ew! What, didn’t want to throw those away? Saving them for later? Saliva and plaque, the poor man’s Armor All! You are more likely to transfer the grot from the dash into your teeth than the other way around.


Lastly, this guy is only allowing test rides. Because we wouldn’t want anything bad to happen to such a rare, collectible car. You may not be able to handle all 91 horsepower.  Find another ad that grinds your gears? tips@dailyturismo.com


“Kevin is an avid, but horrible golfer. He has an unusual fascination with T-tops and enjoys swimming with dolphins. Two of these things are true.”

19 comments:

  1. This should have been marketed under the generic label 'CAR.' Generics save you money!

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  2. Just one turbo LS away from perfect.

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    1. Yup I agree Matt: fun starts at about 27 seconds

      https://youtu.be/fvt20-HLZrw

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  3. If anyone wonders why the Japanese automakers took over the market from the big three in the early 80's they only need to look here. It was the very beginning of short-sighted corporate greed. It would only get worse..

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  4. My driver's ed car was a Fairmont wagon in this same shade of blue. This was back in the day when the football coach taught driver's ed in the public school. I took it over the summer and me and another kid spent the summer driving the coach around town on errands.

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    1. Ha! I also took drivers ed with the football coach sleeping/instructing in the passengers seat. We had a fox body LTD, a fancier version of this. We were all just happy to be driving around town, the car didn't really matter.

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  5. Heh-heh, thanks for the lunch time laugh!

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  6. Kevin, Kevin, Kevin.... You have missed the point. The Fairmont was one of the most honest, straight-forward cars Detroit ever produced. I owned a succession of these things, all used, from 1984 until 2004. They had a lot of space but were quite light. Lots of fun to toss around in the snow. If you didn't like the 200 cid six, you could step up to the V-8.

    I learned to love that they never asked for anything. Even when I did have to work on them, I could tell that a mechanic had provided input to every aspect of the car's design. They are not just easy to work on, they are designed to make the work easy.

    And back in the day, any Fairmont was just a wrecker's yard Fox Mustang GT away from fabulous.

    If this was a wagon, I would be off to Virginia tonight.

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  7. If you squint it looks like a Ferrari 400i.

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  8. It's pretty miserable as-is yes, but it would make a great sleeper. Drop in a 429 and mini-tub the rear and it would be bad ass.

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    1. great pseudonym - i'm a big Marcus fan - what car do you think he'd drive?

      Think not so much of what thou hast not as of what thou hast: but of the things which thou hast, select the best, and then reflect how eagerly they would have been sought, if thou hadst them not. At the same time, however, take care that thou dost not, through being so pleased with them, accustom thyself to overvalue them, so as to be disturbed if ever thou shouldst not have them.

      E39 then?

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  9. You guys are F'ing hilarious!

    "Saliva and plaque - the poor man's Armor All" Indeed.

    George Costanza would have quit the blog so he could finish on top. Glad this piece didn't close with; "We're outta here, its been real."

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  10. This post really brings back the memories. I learned how to drive in one of these myself. My Grandfather volunteered his car to teach us. Our victim was a sedan, maroon over maroon fabric. I can still smell the sun-bleached interior as it composted.

    To be totally honest, they weren't all that bad...far better than your average malaise freighter-sized Lincoln. As mentioned, they were surprisingly light, easy on brakes and tires. That Ford slant-6 was truly indestructible and returned excellent fuel economy.

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  11. Believe it or not this uses the fox platform... just sayin'

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  12. Great post and comments - on a 2-door Fairmont - DT is awesome! "200 cubic inches of despair" - hysterical!

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    1. we did a couple of fun posts about K-cars a while back that you might like - worth searching for with the widget up there to the right

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  13. Funny! Made me laugh out loud, good stuff. Maybe try to do one like this once a week.

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  14. My dad bought a brand new brown 4-door in 1978. Zero options - crank windows, AM radio, plastic flooring, aggressively beige plastic everywhere now that I remember it. He loved that car. Babied it, polished it, and he always seemed to sit a bit taller whenever he climbed in.

    At the time, the Dudley Do-right styling was moderately horrifying to me, but 40 years later it seems to have aged well with a sort of nerdly cool look about it.

    A few years later he bought a used 1979 silver 2-door, and they were a 2 Fairmont family for several years. The '79 had a few more options - carpet, AC - but he never bonded with that one in the same way. He liked to complain that the AC compressor ruined the handling.

    I don't think either of them made it much past 100k.

    - John

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