Ford LTD II

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Ford LTD II
Ford-LTD-II.jpg
Overview
Manufacturer Ford
Production 1977–1979
Assembly Lorain, Ohio
Atlanta, Georgia
Pico Rivera, California
Body and chassis
Class Mid-size
Body style 2-door coupe
4-door sedan
4-door wagon
Layout FR layout
Related Ford Ranchero
Ford Thunderbird
Mercury Cougar sedan
Powertrain
Engine 302 CID Windsor V8
351 CID [[Ford 335 series engine#351M|]] V8
351 CID Windsor V8
400 CID Ford 335 series engine#400 V8
Transmission 3-speed C4 automatic
3-speed Ford FMX Automatic Ford C6 automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 114 inches (2,900 mm) (coupe)
118 inches (3,000 mm) (sedan)
Length 215.5 inches (5,470 mm) (coupe)
219.5 inches (5,580 mm) (sedan)
Chronology
Predecessor Ford Torino
Ford Elite
Successor Ford Fairmont (indirectly)

The Ford LTD II is an intermediate-size car marketed and produced by Ford Motor Company between by 1977 and 1979 in the United States and Canada. Produced as a two-door sedan, four-door sedan, and five-door station wagon, the underpinnings of the LTD II were used by the final generation of the Ford Ranchero. Introduced as the successor of the Ford Torino, the LTD II was rebadged as the Mercury Cougar sedan and station wagon.

Following its 1979 discontinuation, the Ford LTD II was never directly replaced in the Ford model lineup. With the shift of models based on the far smaller Ford Fox platform into the midsize segment in 1983 with the LTD, while the LTD Crown Victoria remained a full size car.

Background[edit]

1974 Ford Grand Torino Brougham

To revive interest in its intermediate-segment lines for both Ford and Mercury divisions, Ford made significant revisions to its model line for its model year for the 1977 model year. The Ford Torino/Gran Torino was discontinued and rebranded as the LTD II line; the Mercury Montego was rebranded as the Cougar (with the previous Cougar two-door becoming the Cougar XR7). The Ford Thunderbird shifted market segments; taking the place of the Ford Elite, the Thunderbird became a more affordable competitor against the Chevrolet Monte Carlo (and its various General Motors counterparts) and the Chrysler Cordoba.

The II of "LTD II" differentiates these cars from the LTD, a full-size Ford that preceded, was contemporary to, and ultimately outlived the LTD II.

Design overview[edit]

The Ford LTD II is one of the largest mid-size cars ever produced in the mid-size/intermediate segment; in terms of exterior dimensions, it is longer, wider, and has a longer wheelbase than the post-downsizing full-size sedans from General Motors or Ford.

Chassis[edit]

The LTD II utilizes the body on frame construction shared with the 1972-1976 Torino/Montego. As with the LTD, the LTD II utilized a full perimeter frame; to isolate road shock from the body, the frame was fitted with fourteen rubber body mounts and five cross members.

On the rear suspension, the four-link solid rear axle utilized coil springs.

At its launch, the LTD II used the 302 V8 (shared with the Mustang II/Granada) as the standard engine outside of California; Optional engines included the canted valve 351M, the standard OHV 351W,and the 400. For 1979, the 400 V8 was no longer offered in the LTD II.

1977 Ford LTD II

Body[edit]

In designing the LTD II, Ford stylists largely abandoned the Coke-bottle styling dominating the design of the Torino/Montego. Although the large fender flares remained, the body was styled with sharp-edged fenders and a sharp-edged roofline. In revised form, the front fascia of the Ford Elite was used on the LTD II; the grille and marker lights were revised with vertically stacked quad headlights. As the two-door Elite followed the design of the Continental Mark IV, the LTD two-door loosely followed that of the Mark V. The station wagon was produced with LTD II front bodywork and interior trim and with a Torino bodyshell; it was sold only in 1977.

The LTD II was produced in three trim levels, base-trim "S", standard-trim, and the luxury-minded LTD II Brougham. Bucket seats with console and floor shifter were available on base- and Brougham-level coupes.

Discontinuation[edit]

1977 Ford LTD II Squire wagon

Although initially popular, sales of the LTD largely fell apart due to a number of factors. In 1977, General Motors downsized its entire full-size model line; although an intermediate, the LTD II boasted larger exterior dimensions than nearly half of the downsized cars (though not interior dimensions). For 1978, the Ford Fairmont was launched; though technically replacing the Maverick, models based on the Fairmont would grow into the midsize segment; the LTD II station wagon was canceled in favor of the Fairmont station wagon and the LTD Country Squire then in development.

Though designed with a similar footprint as the LTD II, the Panther-platform LTD (later the LTD Crown Victoria) adopted interior space rivaling its own predecessor.

References[edit]