Friday, March 03, 2006

I love Pintos, am I the only one?

OK, get it out of your system now, laugh all you want. I love Pintos, especially wagons. I had a 79 Pinto sedan during my college years. It wasn't cool, it wasn't fast, but it was fun and fairly dependable. The Pinto came out in 1971 as Ford's first domestically produced sub compact car. Their answer to Toyota and Datsun imports. And in 1972 the sedan/hatchback were followed by the wagon. Click the header for a comprehensive look at the Pinto, no punches pulled, the good bad and the ugly, with the story of exploding gas tanks in detail.
My parents had 2 Pintos, a brown sedan and a blue wagon. I loved that wagon. They really were practicle little cars, with decent performance and economy. They first came out with the 2000cc 4 cyl engine, then the 2300 cc and finally the 2800cc V6. Both automatic and manual transmissions were offered. The Pinto was built from 1971 to 1980, and despite it's reputation sold very well.
I'll go even further, I love Pintos, I prefer wagons and would even take a woody version. The Pinto Squire. I have a vague recolection of car shopping with my parents as a youngster, and falling in love with a woody Pinto Squire with this funky plaid interior.
I forget what year these panel versions began to apear, I think it was 76 or 77, but they were sort of cool, with mag wheels and stripes, and even the van style porthole window. this one is a 79 Rallye version, there was also a Cruisin version. Admitedly kind of silly, but what the hell it was the 70's.
The Pinto was the foundation for the Mustang II, which love it or hate it was a great little car for Ford, selling very well also. So a lot of mods for Mustang IIs will work for the Pinto, including installing a V8 engine.
Now my sedan, a 79 didn't even look this good. It was an MPG Pony, bare bones stripper with AM radio and 4 spd manual. But they had Cruisin sedans as well as Stallion and ESS editions, offering different stripe and decal packages. The sedan was fine, but the Wagon has the fold down rear seat and all that room for stuff.
I've looked on E-Bay and other sites over the years, looking for a decent Pinto Wagon, but prices are getting high, and most decent ones are quite a distance away. One of these days though I'd like to pick up one.


Racedriven said...

Hay, a pinto...I personal don't care for a pinto, but you are not along in your love with pintos, my father bought his first NEW car, a pinto and to this day, that is one of his favorite cars.

Its like buying a Chevy Cobalt or Scion now, there very cheap to purchase.


Anonymous said...

Pinto's are lots of fun, small rear wheel drive and you can shoe horn a v8. Fun & Cheap.


Anonymous said...

I totally agree. Pinto's are my favorite cars. I still have my pinto and I'm only 19.

Anonymous said...

They are fun little cars. Several years ago me and a buddy bought one off and old woman for $50 (none of the electrical worked). One cutting torch, some chicken wire, and a set of truck tires later we had a dune buggy. Total investment was about $125. We tore all over the Nevada desert with that thing until the clutch went out in the middle of nowhere. We walked back to the nearest road and as far as I know that Ford is still out there.

Anonymous said... , my brother just got a 1977 pinto squire wagon it has a factory 2.8 v6,auto trans with air it is for sale contact me for details .thanks

Anonymous said...

Hey man,you are definately not alone.Ive been a pinto fan since the fall of 1970 when i saw the first one on the road.I bought a 1978 2dr sedan in 78 ,brand new for 3700 bucks.I was 17 and washing cars for a local chrysler dealer across the way.They werent impressed,but i said to my boss,i applied for a job here,not to buy a dodge,lol.I just bought my 4th pinto last year and in the process of dropping a 302 in er.Its a runabout and its costing me a fortune in parts since the vendors online seem to get a kick out of ripping me off.Anyway,someday i will be laughing Mark M Canada

mcjbob said...

I'm on my second Pinto Squire, neat little cars! My first was a 73 we bought new and put on 150,000 miles before selling it (big error on my part). Years later get the bug for another Squire, and took two years to find a nice one. I've got a 74 now (like the 73 bumpers better though. Its a 4 speed, and really a fun little car. Its mint inside, but the "wood" is shot. I've got NOS replacements and will get to that soon.

The Pinto shares the garage with my Ferrari, 63 Vette and Ford Model A Roadster pickup. Its FAR easier to find any one of them than a nice Pinto Squire.

Tom said...

I too love Pintos. I think they were great little cars and lots of fun to drive equipped with a 4-speed transmission.
I sold them new in Davis,California at Hatton Ford-Mercury and in fact, my folks special ordered a 1973 white Pinto Squire with ginger fabric and vinyl interior.

barb said...

had a baby blue 1978 pinto wagon with plaid interior. had it in college until some idiot in a Bronco hit me in the side. we junked the car and regret it to this day (perhaps it's still in the junkyard in lafayette, IN?). would love to find another.