This pre-’70s Thunderbird shows us what we’d get if we were shopping for a top-tier car back then.
Following our look at a Thunderbird in the TV show “CHiPs” comes this streetside Thunderbird Landau four-door sedan.
The suicide doors are a main attraction here. This configuration was shared by the Lincoln Continental, and it distinguished this Ford with a classy style.
Full-sized US edans typically had bench seats, but this Thunderbird had an beefy center console that separated the front seats.
The seats were puffed-up with cushioning.
And they were amply adorned.
Plank-like wood-toned trim underscored the luxury message on the doors.
Thunderbird dashboards could look quite rich-looking.
Outside, this Landau had much vinyl grain and ornamentation
You can see them from afar.
It did much to validate your purchase of a premium vehicle, affirming you in front…
…and in the rear. The extra pointed detailing is unexpected and really quite nice.
Hidden headlights were a surefire deluxe connotation. Here, the owner has them at the ready.
The finely-tined wheel covers continued the prestige theme.
Shouldered fenders added a sense of substance.
The standard engine under the 1969 Thunderbird’s long hood was a 429-cubic-inch “Thunder Jet” V8.
If it were the standard two-barrel carburetor, it would have made 320 gross horsepower. The four-barrel would have elevated that number to 360.
In back, there were two boxy tail lights separated by a black-and-shiny panel, complete with a hidden key door.
Lots of validation in popping the trunk on this car. Lots of detail to affirm your investment.
Flow-through ventilation happens partly with the help of this grate.
The steering wheel met your grasp with a horn ring and a clear rim.
This Thunderbird Landau’s vinyl roof gave it a distinctive style back in the day.
Coming into my car awareness in the late-’70s meant that these T-birds seemed like they should have been driven by funeral homes: the landau bar was a throwback to an era that had long passed.
But today, it seems novel and neat, like the rest of this Thunderbird.