Cult Ford – 1985 Ford LTD LX

Update, 3/14/14: Revisiting a cached version of this listing today shows the same seller listing what appears to be the same car, again with different plates, fewer details, and a couple of higher resolution but older photos, at $3400. So perhaps the demand was enough to prompt him to increase the price by $550, but the changing details and photos are enough to make the sensible buyer approach this one with caution, even if the rarity won’t make you shy away completely.

Original post, 3/13/14:Here’s an interesting car. Supposing you liked the performance of a Mustang/Capri or Thunderbird 5.0 (well, as it was back in the mid-eighties), but you needed four doors, or your driving record required you to appear as if you’d just rolled off a rental car lot. That very thing is possible, because while the Ford Fox platform is most well-known in its Mustang guise, it was also offered as the Ford Fairmont/Granada and Mercury Zephyr/Cougar, as well as the Ford LTD/Mercury Marquis. And there were also the Lincoln Continental sedan and Mark VII. So as you can see, most of the cars on that platform were painfully boring and/or forgettable, but for a brief run in the mid-1980s, Ford decided they wanted to try to annoy BMW by dropping the 302 V8 in their plain-jane sedan. They also threw in bigger brakes, stiffer suspension, 4-speed automatic and limited slip differential. You can find this 1985 Ford LTD LX for sale for $3950 in the Dublin/Pleasanton/Livermore, CA area.

1985 Ford LTD LX right front

Since it was first listed, the seller has revised the posting, adding more pictures, but unfortunately removing the ones that most accurately show the current state of the car. While these turbine-style Mustang GT wheels suit the car quite well, the car is currently shod with 10-hole phone-dial style Mustang LX wheels. The car is said to have roughly 130,000 miles on it, and to run well.

1985 Ford LTD LX interior

Everything is stock in its current state, and while on one level it would be a shame to lose the originality of this car, it would be interesting if all the Mustang manual gearbox components could be installed on this car. It is said to have a new battery, alternator, coolant, and hoses, and has moved from state to state with different owners. The car is currently just outside of Houston, so it’s not clear why the seller is listing it in the San Francisco area.

1985 Ford LTD LX engine

The engine looks pretty good, albeit at low resolution, and should have plenty of life left in it. There’s a whole catalog full of performance modifications available for Fox-platform Mustangs – what would you apply here? Perhaps chassis and transmission upgrades would be enough to turn this into a proper sports sedan.

1985 Ford LTD LX right rear

You can probably expect little dings and dents from age, and perhaps some oxidized paint needing attention, based on the car’s age and location alone. And on the subject of dings, notice the minor dent ahead of the right rear wheel, where a previous owner has seemingly snagged the car on something. In a humid climate like Houston’s, this should probably be treated soon to avoid major damage. Other than that, this seems like the perfect platform to drive and modify as you get to know it. Or for a true Mustang nut, this is the Mustang you can take when the family comes along.


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