AJ’s Car of the Day: 1973 Ford Thunderbird

AJ’s Car of the Day: 1973 Ford Thunderbird

Car: Ford Thunderbird

Year: 1973

What makes it special: The sixth generation Ford Thunderbird was a large personal luxury coupe that was produced for the 1972 to 1976 model years. A counterpart of the Continental Mark IV, this generation of the Thunderbird was the largest ever produced; weighing in at over 5,000 pounds and are also the heaviest coupes ever produced by Ford, aside from its Mark IV counterpart.

What made it famous: For 1973, Thunderbird increased in size. To accommodate the larger 5 mph bumpers mandated for all 1973 automobiles, the front was restyled with an egg crate grille, topped by a spring-loaded hood ornament, flanked by the quad headlight in individual nacelles. The turn signals were more prominent at the fender edges. Also new to the exterior were opera windows, first optional, then standard late in the model year. Power windows, vinyl roof, manual air conditioning, and tinted glass were also made standard during the model year. Some new options included AM/FM 8-track tape player, remote control right hand outside mirror, and an anti-theft system. Some optional equipment available included sure-track brakes, an early anti-lock braking system, power sunroof, power door locks, cruise control and the 460 cu in V8. 1973 was the last year for the 429 V8 and leaded gas. A total of 87,269 Thunderbirds were built, making this the third highest production figure to date.

Why I would want one: Admittedly, I was not a fan of these when new, but now think they’re kinda cool in a “Mac Daddy” way.

Fun fact: In terms of styling, the sixth-generation Thunderbird would heavily influence the styling of the 1974-1976 Mercury Cougar XR7 and , the latter of which was replaced by the seventh-generation Thunderbird in 1977.