Recent reader feedback included a request for more Ford Pintos, specifically, early small-bumper wagons. Since it’s been a while since the last feature Pinto, the search was on, and it didn’t take too long to expose why there have been no recent Pinto features: Pintos are actually quite thin on the ground, and when you narrow the criteria down to small-bumper (pre-1974) cars, you get very few results, and if you filter out everything but wagons, you’re left with a few project cars and shells that don’t fit with the spirit of things here. With that, one of the listings was quite interesting – check out this 1971 Ford Pinto for sale for $3500 in Denton, TX.
Hey, the 1990s called, it wants its small camera-phone photography back. And while you were on the phone, the early 2000s called because it wants its “the **** called, it wants its **** back” laugh-line formula returned. If you can get beyond the tiny photos, the stance, wheels, and apparent condition suggest someone spent a decent amount of money on this car. The yellow body with black hood and striping is classic early-1970s, as is the giant for-sale sign. The car has some Group II badges, which turns out to be a dealer-installed kit made by Autosport Products including a sport stripe, slotted alloys, sport muffler, hood pins, fender badges, center console, leather steering wheel cover, walnut shift knob, and a dash plaque. No mention is made of rust, but the humid climate of Denton, TX means you’ll want to investigate thoroughly.
So it’s a stripes and stickers package, right? Well, apparently there were some engine dress-up parts on some of the cars, too. And one of the owners of this car saw fit to install actual genu-wine parts that could produce extra power, including a mild cam, Holley 390 cfm carb, headers, and 15″ Centerline Convo-Pro wheels. The car has also had recent work, including a new battery, new fuel pump, newer tires, a fuel cell, and a re-built rear-end with 3.55 gears. The car is said to run well, but no further detail is given on mechanical condition.
The interior features some decent upgrades, including sports seats with yellow accents that would be out of place on anything but a bright yellow car. Other upgrades include a special console and sports steering wheel, and overall, things look quite decent. Videos show a couple of loose wires in the footwells, which could be chalked up to ageing and getting floppy if you’re an optimist, or electrical problems if your cup is half empty. In this picture, you can also see the saddest part of this car – the automatic shifter. What’s the mystery box in the back seat? Surely it’s not the coveted original Group II-exclusive factory tool kit? Even if it isn’t a manual, this car might be the right gateway drug for your manual-phobic budding enthusiast/spouse.
Thanks to the internet, here’s a walkaround video showing what appears to be the same car, pre-hood-blackoutening: