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1980 Ford Granada [europe] – customizing, or not?

April 6, 2012

by Seb Perez

Around 10 years ago I bought this 1980 Ford Granada. I was studying in Germany and I was looking for a big cool car but had a very low budget.

After searching for months I finally found this Ford Granada which was owned by an 90 year old gentleman, an ex-Ford engineer at the Ford plant in Köln Germany. This 90 year old guy died and for 20 years the car was in hands of his son…  a 70 year old gentleman who could not separate himself from his father’s cars but also barely used it.

So there it was, with original 50.000 kilometers, reserve wheel never used, factory plastic partially covering the back seats, original catalogues, user manual, etc… a real time capsule.

The Grandpa was very frugal and bought the most basic version possible. The car had no extras, not even a radio!

I used the car all this years without mayor problems and drove with it across Europe several times. As I always took the car with me when moving to other countries, the car had german plates, spanish plates and now dutch plates. The car still have no 100.000 kilometers.

What is even better. He wanted to sell the car to right guy! He told me he had lots of people interested but he knew they were not “good enough” for the car. He wanted to be sure that the car would be in the right hands. After I convincing him that I was not going to slaughter the car for parts, nor use it as a taxi, he agreed on selling it to me.


It’s time for a change!

In the meanwhile I have had a great decade with this car, as said, never had mayor problems and as it is a V6 2.0L engine it was (and is) still not that expensive to ride with.

But now I need a change and I’m considering two options. Selling the Granada and buying a classic station wagon (from 1960 to 1980, not newer, not older as I want it for daily use) or customizing the Granada for a change. I’ve been playing around with the pictures and here is the result.

#1 – Light custom version

Lower suspension, black/darkbrown paint or car wrap or even surface rust, white walls.


#2 – F-100 custom front

Lower suspension, black/darkbrown paint or car wrap or even surface rust, white walls, suicide doors and F-100 pickup front grill.


#3 – 1968 Mercury custom front

Lower suspension, black/darkbrown paint or car wrap, white walls suicide doors and ’68 Mercury front grill.


What do you think?

Customizing or selling?

Are you interested in the car?

If you have around 900 Euros to spend, let me know.

Do you have a classic station wagon or nomad to offer?

Preferably american. Not older than 1960, not newer than 1980…

Chevy, Ford, Mercury, Buick, Plymouth,Dodge…

Impala, Caprice, Chevelle, Fairlane, LTD, Country Squire…

Let me know!



Guillermo April 11, 2012 at 5:49 pm

Voto a full por la version Mercury, una bomba como queda, por esa plata, no lo venderia, no se me hace que sea tan facil conseguir un auto de esas caracteristicas en un estado tan bueno, avance nomas con las modificaciones y espero ver fotos del trabajo.
Un abrazo
Buenos Aires

Seb April 13, 2012 at 6:33 pm

Hola Guillermo, gracias por el comentario. Veremos como se desarrolla la cosa. Publicaré novedades ni bien las tenga! Saludos.

JR April 15, 2012 at 8:15 pm

I really enjoy your newsletters and the tips you offer along with the reviews of the models. It is nice to get a modelers view rather than a sales pitch.
For the your driver, sell and buy a station wagon you have had this one long enough let someone else enjoy the ride.
Just got the my copy of the “UNDERHAULIN” thought it was great especially liked the engine detailing part, have seen engines without their heads and wandered how to do that, thanks for the tip.

Seb April 16, 2012 at 8:04 am

Hi JR, you might be right… I need a change. I really enjoyed this car. Maybe it’s time for a greater change than only customization. We’ll see.

Mark September 1, 2012 at 12:04 am

Sweet ride. I don’t know how many of those cars are still hanging around Europe. If they’re common then I say go nuts and Customize the hell out of it. If they’re hard to come by then go with a Restoration or a very mild Custom.
The American Ford Granada was a piece of crap right off the assembly line just like the American Ford Escort.
The American Ford Motor Company can’t seem to build an Automatic transmission and haven’t done so in about 30 years. Don’t get me started about the Carburettors they used in the 1980’s.
I don’t know anything about European Fords but I did have a 1966 Ford LTD 4 door. The person I bought it from drank heavily and had no idea what his mechanic had done to it. When the engine blew, it was replaced with a 350 HP 302 c.i.d with a 4bbl carb… When the Transmission blew, it was replaced with a Rebuilt Police Interceptor (W/Overdrive) unit. I only found out about the Horse Power and Transmission by taking the car to a local Speed Shop.
A true and funny story about my ’66 LTD: My cousin and I were getting on the Freeway one night and we were right behind an elderly man on the on ramp. He was doing about 15 MPH/24 KPH. The speed limit on the ramp was 30MPH/48KPH and the Freeway Speed Limit was 50MPH/80KPH. When we reached the end of the ramp, I saw an opening and a clear shot to get around Mr. 48KPH.
We were almost along side of him when I Mashed the Gas Pedal to the floor. The next thing I saw was the Sky. All I could hear was the Carburettor sucking massive amounts of Air, Petrol and the rear tyres squealing with delight. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see my cousin groping the air in front of him trying to grab the Dashboard. When the front wheels came back to earth, my cousin was no longer trying to grab the Dashboard because he was on the floor under it. It’s funny now but it scared the crap out of us that night. I’ve always wondered about Mr., 48KPH. It must have scared the crap out him. To see a car pass him on his left with the front tyres in the air and the rear tyres squealing. The next day I took the car to the Speed Shop to get some answers. The person that owned the place told me the Engine was called a Canadian Boss 302.
I really liked that car. It’s too bad the chassis snapped. I did sell the motor and trans. though.

Seb September 1, 2012 at 9:26 pm

This is car is not so common anymore here in Europe but it’s not a valuable classic car, even if 100% original or restored. That’s why I think customizing it a bit will be no crime.
About your experience with Ford cars, I’m sorry for that! This Ford Granada y rock solid. It always starts, gets my safe from A to B. Great car. Never had mayor issues.
I wish I could be in America. Dude, you have great cars over there!! Some day!!!
Thanks you a lot for sharing your story! Love it!
Take care!

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