- Written by webmin
Image via oldcarbrochures.com
During the 1980s and 1990s, it seemed that by the time you passed retirement age, Ford simply gave you an LTD Crown Victoria. The elderly of those decades weren’t like the elderly of today, out buying Honda Elements and Scion xBs; noooo, the favored chariot of the blue-haired, Bermuda-shorts-and-black-socks crowd of yesteryear was Ford’s full-size rear-driver. Add in the fact that cops and taxi operators loved it like a fat kid loves cake, and you had these Crown Vics quite literally on every street corner.
But, 25 years later, does that ubiquity translate into collectibility? On the plus side, nobody was whining about the age of the Panther platform because it was still rather fresh, just six years old. In an age of unibody four-cylinder front-drivers becoming commonplace, the Crown Vic stuck to the tried and true (as well as simple and inexpensive to repair) body-on-frame construction with a V-8 and rear-wheel drive. Parts are going to be readily available, and by upgrading to cop/taxi chassis and drivetrain components, you’d have a fairly bulletproof and cushy cruiser.
On the downside, these things are full of metal, so that one body panel you’ll need will likely already have been crushed by now (or demo derby’d to death). The base 302 in these things wheezed out no more than 165hp, and the cop-car 351 was good for just 15hp more. And even though you’ll be the only guy to show up in a Crown Vic at your local cruise night, it’ll be like taking your mom to your prom.
But there’s a chance somebody out there is nostalgic for a Crown Vic, so let’s put it out there for candidacy in the Class of 1985. Could a Crown Vic – maybe a cop-spec version or a wagon – become the crown jewel in somebody’s collection now that it’s a quarter-century old? Or is there no reason at all to restore or display this pathetic panther?
As for last week’s Jeep Cherokee, it seemed many of you thought the XJ itself is unobjectionable, but the later 4.0L models made it great. So we’ll revisit the Cherokee again in the future. BTW, we’re also working on inserting a simple yes/no poll into these Class of ’85 posts to get a more objective count on each candidate. And, as always, if you have any suggestions, either for the Class of 1985 or the upcoming Class of 1986, feel free to email them to us or leave them in the comments.