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Lincoln Continental Mark V, Blue, for sale in Charlotte, North Carolina, for $9,595.
Spanning 19 feet, 2 inches, nobody can say the 1978 Lincoln Mark V isn't a big car. Representing the last of the traditional land yachts, 1978 was the final year for the big block 460 V8 in a Lincoln, so if you've always yearned for this uniquely American style of luxury, here's a second chance.
Showing 61,685 original miles, this exceptionally clean and well maintained Mark V drives and feels like top-of-the-line luxury from three decades ago. Brilliantly dressed in what appears to be Wedgwood Blue with a matching blue vinyl top, the new Mark V's razor-sharp styling certainly looks impressive. With long hood/short deck styling that has always been the Continental's hallmark, the Mark V also shows crisper creases and neat details like the flat parking light lenses that illuminate a Continental emblem when viewed from the side. This one has apparently been in very careful hands for the past 33 years, because there's no sign of damage or additional paintwork, with the finish on the car showing a lovely patina that can only come from careful maintenance. There's no sign of rust, either, since this car hails from the south, and all the chrome is bright and even the bumpers don't have any parking lot dings. Even more remarkable is the color-matched rub strips along the flanks, which are still bright and haven't started to peel off, which happens frequently to cars like this that have been stored outdoors. Badges are crisp, and even the letters spelling out CONTINENTAL on the traditional spare tire hump on the deck lid aren't showing any pitting or fading.
Inside you've got a SuperFly flashback, with light blue velour covering the interior like a soft, fuzzy leisure suit. Fans will dig the Lincoln's furniture, and both the front split bench and rear bench are the size of the sofa in your living room, and every bit as comfortable. The upholstery, carpets, and headliner are undoubtedly original equipment and remain in excellent condition with no rips or tears. The door panels, made from 1970s plastic, are showing their age with some cracking, although the dash is undamaged. Speaking of the dash, the driver gets a massive swath of simulated wood that's really not all that convincing, but that's part of the car's charm-it isn't supposed to be. Turn on the headlights and the gauges light up with a cool, icy blue lighting system that was probably pretty high-tech in 1978-can't you imagine your father calling his buddies over to see his new car and then turning off the lights in the garage to show off the dash? There's just nothing like the interior of a '70s luxury car if you're into absolute isolation and the most gentle pampering available. Everything was standard, including A/C, power windows, power locks, cruise control (and here you thought steering-wheel mounted controls were a recent invention), and even an AM/FM/8-track that'll play your favorite ABBA tape.
Powering this massive cruiser is Ford's biggest V8, a 460 cubic inch hammer that makes 210 horsepower and a reasonable 357 pounds of torque thanks to a 4-barrel carburetor. That's easily more than the Eldorado's 425 cubic inch V8, and the Mark V was quite a big longer than the already mammoth Eldo. The only transmission available was Ford's rugged C6 3-speed automatic, which has traditionally lived behind the big blocks, and out back there's likely a very highway friendly gear that makes high-speed cruising effortless-you just know those guys down in Texas were buying these and blasting across the prairie at 100 MPH. The engine bay is about what you'd expect from 61,000 miles-well maintained and clean. But it is all original and fully functional, from the air cleaner with its original Ford Blue paint to the distributor that still appears to be wearing its original spark plug wires. It runs beautifully, starts easily, and glides down the road as effortlessly as you would expect.
In 1978, the Lincoln was indisputably the better car compared to its Cadillac counterpart. With more power, a handsome, fresh design, and a lovely interior, it was the ultimate luxury car to tell the world you had well and truly arrived. This one is nicely preserved and drives as good as it looks, with that complete feeling of isolation that only a body-on-frame car with a giant V8 can deliver. These cars were a staple of American highways for decades, and we'll never see their kind again. If you're a fan of the era, a Lincoln collector, or just want to see what all the fuss is about, you owe it to yourself to drive a '70s land yacht. There's simply nothing else that feels like it. Call today!
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Engine:460 ci v8
Location:Charlotte, North Carolina