Original dealer brochure cover for the 1978 Ford LTD.
Optional features included power windows, Landau roof treatment and aluminum wheels.
The rear view of the top-of-the line LTD Landau 4 door pillared sedan.
M Y C O L L E C T I O N — The seventies was a decade of change for the automobile industry. New federal rules, laws and guidelines took came to pass every single year of the decade, sending engineers and buyers alike into a decade-long tailspin. By 1980, the business had practically reinvented itself with everyone downsizing their model lines and trying to meet emissions controls and gas mileage regulations. The full-sized Fords were downsized for the 1979 model year, making these 1978 Fords as large as the original family Ford would ever get. Their wheelbase was 121 inches, their overall length a bit more than 18 1/2 feet, and their weight was more than two tons. Though suffering somewhat from the tackier side of seventies' culture, and of course the more stringent bumper regulations, there is an elegance to these Fords that wasn't to be repeated. I wish the optional fender skirts had been able to be made flush, the small raised lip on the rear fender cutout makes that impossible. I'm guessing they were a boardroom Marketing decision rather than a Design decision. You can't deny that this was a very luxurious look for a mainstream division.
• For a moderately informative Wiki page on the Ford LTD 1965-86, click over.
* Yes, there were full-sized Fords after 1978 but they were downsized. I'm considering the '78 Fords to be the final iteration of the large Ford lineup without regard to size, weight and mileage.