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New Driver

71 torino 500 wagon


Hagerty Fan
Not applicable

I owned a '71 351C 2V/C4/9"/disc brake/PS/PB wagon, along with a '70 Torino Cobra, '71 GT 351C 4V/4-speed, a '71 351C 2V/C4/9" Fastback 500, and a '70 4-door (ended up being sacrificed for parts).

The wagon was the last Torino in the driveway, I sold that off in 1997, haven't had anything that old since, although I did have a brief affair with a '76 Ranchero 500 (460/C6) last year.

All done with that, however.


I aways loved the 70-71 Torino. Never knew why because I was never a big Ford follower. 

Then I found that Larry Shinoda and Bunkie Knudsen were the men behind this car as well the 69-70 Mustang. Two of my favorite guys from GM. 

Being. Chevelle fan I could see the Chevelle influence in the Torino with the influence of a 67 Torino fast back. 


Knudsen's beak on the Thunderbird and 71-73 Mustang design he approved didn't go over as well. An interesting mixed bag of efforts/results at Ford. Sources vary on how much Shinoda had to do with the 71-73 Mustang design team... irregardless his body of work in auto design is pretty amazing (and AMC scamming him is a bizarre story).


I own a 69 Mustang (as a raised-in-GM person) so my appreciation for Shinoda is there.


The TBird was a car that lost its way even before the beak. 

To be hind the 70’s we’re not kind to Ford. Mustang 2, Granada and of of the other models just all did not work together well. It was a tough era for all but Lee did not do well with the infighting with HF2. 

in fact things got better when HF 2 got out of the way. 


As a kid I loved the in-reruns Starsky and Hutch Torino.


As an adult I have come to appreciate the 70-71 as peak Torino styling for me. I do like that the "coke-bottle" side styling lasted the entire run, and also think the mid-70s Torino face is one of the best of that era  --a 76 Torino 4 door still looks "right" as a 4 door which is seldom true. This is probably an ironic situation of them saving money not restyling the sides of the body.


Not shading on the earlier models, they live in that boxier Fairlane heritage for me. No different than my preference for 68-72 GM intermediates over their ancestors.