I had big plans this weekend. Then the weather merrily threw a wrench into them. Such is the capricious nature of the weather in the Midwest in early autumn. On September 20th, it was 94 degrees. This past Thursday afternoon, it was sunny, gorgeous and 71. I had high hopes for the final cruise night of the year for Friday, at Coral Ridge Mall in Coralville, IA, an hour west on Interstate 80 from home base. But the weather got cold, crappy and drizzly that morning, and didn’t have the decency to go away. But I salvaged things by going to one of my favorite Italian restaurants that evening, and today went to a small car show in downtown Rock Island. Whereupon I spotted this most excellent artifact of late ’70s plushness and luxury: The 1979 Lincoln Continental Town Car.
1979 was the last hurrah for the truly full-sized Lincoln. Cadillac had already downsized their cars in model year 1977, but Lincoln held out just a little longer.
Although the full-sized Ford and Mercury moved to the new Panther platform that year, Lincoln held out just one more year. Things were much the same as they had been since 1977, with the standard Lincoln Continental two- and four-doors.
As had been the case for most of the decade, Town Car and Town Coupé packages could be added to the Continental sedan and coupe.
The Continental, Town Car and Town Coupé received a new Mark-style grill in ’77, and in ’78 received smaller fender skirts and a new instrument panel based off of the Marquis, but with much more woodgrain and chrome trim.
Checking that box on the order form got you more standard features and a flashier interior, with floating-pillow style seating.
Anyway, for those well-heeled customers of the late Seventies, this was their last chance for completely non-downsized plushness. This triple cordovan example was the standout at a small show I attended in Rock Island.
I struck up a conversation with the owner, who also has a 28,000 mile 1989 Town Car Signature Series and 1962 Continental sedan. The ’79 was for sale simply to free up some space.
Everything works, from the A/C to the power windows, and it runs well. It’s not perfect, but is a nice example. Not too nice that you wouldn’t worry about driving and enjoying it.
The color combination was very attractive. I sat behind the wheel, and can tell you the seats are as comfortable as the La-Z-Boy in your living room. Indeed, driving one of these around town has got to be as close as you can get to piloting your living room through the streets.
So, if anyone is so inclined, this Broughamtastic final-year gigantic Continental Town Car can be yours!
It’s not the true baby blue Continental Billy Joel famously sang about, but I like Cordovan Metallic better anyway. My only change, if I were so inclined as to add a third Lincoln to my fleet, would be to add the lovely turbine alloy wheels. But as it sits, this is a clean example of true American luxury, with chrome, velour and opera lamps proudly applied!