Ford Granada (North America)
|Manufacturer||Ford Motor Company|
|Body and chassis|
|Layout||Front-engine, rear-wheel drive|
The Ford Granada was a mid-size car built and marketed by Ford Motor Company in North America from 1975–1982, along with its sister models, the Mercury Monarch, and Lincoln Versailles. The Granada was available as a 2-door coupe, a 4-door sedan or a station wagon. A total of 2,066,336 Granadas were produced in both generations.
First generation (1975–1980)
1975–1977 Ford Granada 4-door
|Assembly||Mahwah, New Jersey
|Body and chassis|
|Body style||2-door coupe
|Engine||200 cu in (3.3 L) I6
250 cu in (4.1 L) I6
302 cu in (4.9 L) V8
351 cu in (5.8 L) V8
3-speed Ford C4 automatic
Introduced for the 1975 model year, the Granada was originally intended as the successor to the Ford Maverick. As a consequence of the 1973 energy crisis, the fuel-efficient Maverick continued to grow in popularity; Ford chose to undergo production of both cars. The Maverick was positioned as an entry-level car while the Granada was created a new niche as “one of the most luxurious compacts on the market” To appeal to potential buyers moving out of full-size cars, the Granada retained many comfort and convenience features seen in the much larger Torino and LTD, only in a smaller package. To emphasize this, the Granada was marketed by Ford as a rival to the similarly sized Mercedes-Benz 280 of the time. The Maverick was produced alongside the Granada until the end of the 1977 model year.
The first-generation Granada and Monarch were based on the platform of the four-door Ford Maverick/Mercury Comet. Sharing much of its design with earlier Ford compacts and intermediates, it would be the final generation of the platform introduced with the 1960 Ford Falcon. They were assembled in Wayne, Michigan and Mahwah, New Jersey, and also overlapped with the Maverick/Comet's ultimate successors, the Ford Fairmont and the Mercury Zephyr, which were released in 1978.
During the 1977 model year, a rebadged version of the Granada was introduced by Lincoln division as the Lincoln Versailles. Intended as competitor to the Cadillac Seville, the Versailles sold very poorly. The 1978 model year brought a minor restyling for the Granada; this included rectangular headlamps and revised taillights as well as more aerodynamic "bullet" style side mirrors. These features continued through the end of first-generation Granada/Monarch production in 1980.
Powertrain options included the base 200 cu in (3.3 L) Thriftpower Six, a 250 cu in (4.1 L) Thriftpower Six, and 302 cu in (4.9 L) and 351 cu in (5.8 L) "Windsor" V8s. Available transmissions included a standard three-speed manual, a four-speed manual with overdrive, and a three-speed automatic (standard on 302/255-powered cars).
Ghia versions of both the Granada and Monarch included higher-level interior and exterior trim and added sound insulation. The 1975-76 Grand Monarch Ghia  was a top-of-the line version. The Granada Sports Coupe  was produced in 1976-1977; Mercury offered a similar treatment with its 1976-77 Monarch S. A 1977–1/2  variation on the Granada Sports Coupe, produced from May '77 through the end of the model year, featured blacked-out molding, modified trim, taillights, and color selections. Documentation of this half-year model exists in Ford advertising from spring 1977. This car is perhaps the "rarest" of Granada production.
- Sports Coupe/S
The 1976–77 Sports Coupe and S packages included standard heavy-duty suspension, styled steel wheels, striping unique to this option and unique interior trim with standard bucket seats. The Granada's front spindles interchanged with the Pinto (and the badge engineered Mercury Bobcat) and Mustang II, but the rotors were larger, at 11 in (280 mm) compared to 9.5 in (240 mm), and used a "5 on 4½" (five lug, 4.500 in (114.3 mm) bolt circle) pattern.
The 1978-80 ESS(European Sport Sedan) replaced the Sports Coupe and S models. Sports Coupes, and ESS models equipped with bucket seats, can be identified by trim codes beginning with "P" on the car's data sticker on the edge of the driver's door. The Granada and Monarch ESS models featured "blacked-out" chrome, and a standard-equipment bucket seat interior with a floor-mounted shifter, although a bench seat was optional. Ford Motor Company's design chief at the time, Stephen Estrada, mentioned later that "The Granada was my favorite design and the one that I'm most proud of". The ESS option included standard color-keyed wheelcovers (styled-steel wheels were optional) and unique opera-window louvres.
Second generation (1981–1982)
1982 Ford Granada GL station wagon
|Body and chassis|
4-door station wagon
|Platform||Ford Fox platform|
|Related||Ford Mustang/Mercury Capri
Ford Fairmont/Mercury Zephyr
Lincoln Continental (1982–1987)
Lincoln Continental Mark VII
|Engine||2.3L Lima I4
200 cu in (3.3 L) Thriftpower Six I6
3.8 L (232 cu in) Essex V6
255 cu in (4.2 L) Windsor V8
|Transmission||4-speed AOD automatic
3-speed C4 automatic
For the 1981 model year, the Granada underwent a major update. New from the ground up, it was based from a longer-wheelbase version of the Fox platform; it shared its body with the newly downsized Cougar, the replacement for the Monarch. It also shared many of its mechanical components with the Ford Fairmont, which replaced the Maverick in 1978. In keeping with its deluxe niche, the styling of the new Granada was kept more formal (in comparison to the Fairmont) with upgraded trim. The Lincoln Versailles was discontinued altogether; it was largely replaced by a downsized 1982 Lincoln Continental. In what would later be common in 1980s Fords, the Granada was produced in base "L" and deluxe "GL" trims.
The second-generation was available in three different body styles. In 1981, it was produced as a 2-door sedan and 4-door sedan. For 1982, the 2-door was discontinued. The same year, Ford moved its mid-size station wagon from the Fairmont lineup to the Granada. Base power for the Fox-body Granada was a 2.3 L Lima 4-cylinder, with an optional 3.3 L Thriftpower Six inline-six and a 255 CID Windsor V8. In 1982, the Granada became the first Ford available with the 3.8 L Ford Essex V6.
Blue Oval Return
The 1982 model also saw the return of the Blue Oval logo on the exterior of a Ford vehicle in North America for the first time since the Great Depression (the logo was however clearly stamped on an interior aluminum trim piece attached to the door threshold of the first generation Granada, both two- and four-door models). In other markets, the Blue Oval logo had been used on Fords since the late 1970s. Although most other Ford models saw the logo arrive in 1983 (except for the Fairmont, which was about to be replaced with the Ford Tempo for 1984, the big LTD and Crown Victoria, and the Ford Thunderbird, which rarely had any mention of Ford on the vehicle itself for most of its existence), the Granada saw it arrive a year early, largely as a test. While Ford had quit using the logo on its vehicles during the Depression, it had remained over the years as its logo in all other uses (corporate logo, sales literature, advertisements, owner manuals, dealership signs, etc.) and decided to use it again on its vehicles.
In 1983, as part of a major model shift, Ford gave the Granada another minor update. However, it was rechristened the LTD in an effort to revive sales of that nameplate. The LTD Crown Victoria, Mercury Grand Marquis, and Lincoln Town Car, the top-level models, became the sole full-size cars in each division's lineup. The Ford Thunderbird and Mercury Cougar platform-mates of the Granada were also shifted back into their original roles as personal-luxury coupes; the first "aerodynamic" vehicles from Ford led to a revival of sales. Ford's shift to front-wheel drive led to the Fairmont being replaced by the Tempo in 1984 and the LTD being replaced by the Taurus in 1986. After the 1989 redesign of the Thunderbird, the Fox platform was used solely by the Mustang and the Lincoln Mark VII, keeping the version shared with the rest of the midsize Fords to the end of the 1993 model year.
- "Motor Trend - Sep 1974". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
- "Road and Track - Aug 1974; first paragraph". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
- Popular Mechanics - Oct 1974; p104 second paragraph. Retrieved 2011-03-21.
- "Car and Driver - Aug 1974; second paragraph". Retrieved 2011-03-21.
- Gunnell, John Standard Catalog of American Cars 1946-1975 4th Edition (Iola, WI: Krause Publications, Inc 2002), p.445.
- Flammang, James Standard Catalog of American Cars 1976-1999 3rd Edition (Iola, WI: Krause Publications, Inc 1999), p.466.
- Dammann, George 90 Years of Ford” (Osceola, WI: Crestline Series b MBI Publishing Company, 1993), p.475.
- "Production & Registry Totals". The Granada-Monarch-Versailles Registry. Retrieved 2009-04-27.
- Dammann, George 90 Years of Ford” (Osceola, WI: Crestline Series b MBI Publishing Company, 1993), p.468.
- Dammann, George 90 Years of Ford” (Osceola, WI: Crestline Series b MBI Publishing Company, 1993), p.474.
- Street Rodder, 1/85, p.14.
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