1976 Lincoln Continental Mark IV Bill Blass Designer Edition – Maximum Broughamage

I have written up several Lincoln Continental Mark IVs here over the years. So another one won’t hurt. Ha ha! I’ve always loved the Mark series, due in no small part to my grandfather owning a Mark III, Mark IV and Mark V over the years. But I have an extra fondness for the Designer Series Marks of 1976. It was a brilliant marketing idea by Ford Motor Company, and various designer Lincolns appeared way, way, wayyyy to the final one, the 2003 Town Car Cartier. In 2004, Ford decided they didn’t want to pay to use the upper-crust name on their top of the line Town Car, and the ’04 model was unceremoniously dubbed the Ultimate instead.

This particular one was posted recently to Facebook by a friend of mine, Craig Rubacha. While I did see a ’76 Mark IV Cartier locally a few years back (that was, in fact, the subject of my very first post for Riverside Green), I’ve never seen a navy and tan 1976 Bill Blass or burgundy and silver Pucci Mark IV in the metal. There was a nice aqua metallic Givenchy around, but it has since disappeared elsewhere.

The Bill Blass featured a classic navy and tan color scheme, not quite as subtle as the oyster grey Cartier, but not as flashy as the aquamarine Givenchy. It was a classy color combo, and perhaps is the most attractive Designer Mark to modern eyes. Certainly the navy leather interior with tan accents is sharp-at least to your author.

So, what’s the story with this one? As the seller states, “I am the third owner of this 1976 Lincoln Continental Mark IV Bill Blass Designer Edition. The vehicle was originally purchased new by a couple in Springfield and stored in a specially built garage to house the car. The car was sold from the original owner in early 2019 and I purchased the vehicle in November 2019.”

“Since then I kept the car clean and as close to original as possible, only replacing things that fail with age. So far the work I have had done includes the following: both window regulators rebuilt as they both failed, preformed a radiator flush and replaced the radiator cap, had a new Interstate truck battery installed, and had all the belts replaced. The downsides of the car stem from 98% of the car being original, and probably the biggest downside is the failure of the A/C compressor.”

“I have a new belt for the A/C compressor I just haven’t purchased a new one yet which is part of the reason the car is priced low. Also, I know the carburetor is still good but occasionally has trouble managing after a cold start, but goes away after giving the car a little gas in park. I drive the car twice a week typically and it drives quite well, though it may need an alignment down the road but nothing pressing.”

“Lastly, there are a few minor cosmetic blemishes that are shown in the pictures. Although the car has a couple of problems, there is a lot of good with it too. The biggest plus is the car has been treated with Ziebart Rust Protection on the undercarriage, inside the doors and engine bay. This ensures the car stays rust free underneath, the only exception being the exhaust system which has some rust.”

“The car has never seen a winter road and has been garage kept up until only recently where I have covered it outside. The paint is in wonderful condition, a unique paint color combination within the Bill Blass designer package for the Mark IV, only about 500 were produced in the last year of the Mk IV, and very few survive today.”

“The interior is great as well, the only defects being a small chunk missing out of the steering wheel (no clue how that happens) and slight wear on the door handle grips. The seats are fully intact and feel absolutely amazing, and the back seats appear to never have been sat in.”

The vehicle comes with the original window sticker listing its options which include the following: Anti-lock brakes (ED: Sure-Track, an early form of ABS, first offered on the Mark III as I recall), cruise control that works, intermittent wipers, automatic headlights, and auto-dimming high beams (yes, they dim the brights when a car is approaching, though they can be a bit finicky at times) and an 8-track FM / AM stereo system.”

“As mentioned, I have the original window sticker as well as the Ziebart receipts, a dealer brochure, and a few miscellaneous documents. I have a clean Ohio title in hand as well as 2 sets of keys. I am only selling the car because we are in the midst of a move and I simply can’t keep the car, so it must go.

This one is currently on offer through Craigslist Dayton. For a mere $7,250, this posh, gas-guzzling, over-the-top and totally awesome Continental could be yours!

5 Replies to “1976 Lincoln Continental Mark IV Bill Blass Designer Edition – Maximum Broughamage”

  1. hank chinaski

    Nowadays you can’t be too sentimental. You’re best bet’s a true, er, navy blue continental…

  2. John Matthius

    These were my favorite Mark IV’s as well. Just a stunning color combo. The cloth interior choice was noteworthy, too. Very showy, incredibly luxurious, & coffin-like quiet. Alas, as is often the case, the jaunty two-tone leather interior with its soft glow finish was not as quiet, but IMHO more visually striking. Too bad about the cracked steering wheel, obviously frequently seen on cars of this vintage, but somewhat surprising in that it doesn’t sound as if the car has endured much hot sun exposure. Fairly easy replacement with an intact wheel if sourcing the correct color is not too difficult. $7250 sounded like a very fair price for this relatively unique Mark IV.

    • sgeffe

      How in the world did that happen to that wheel? Not the first Ford survivor I’ve seen with the issue, and I’ve seen that GM thin-rim designs from, say, a normal two-spoke wheel for a 1971 Olds Cutlass, are unobtanium, so you’re forced to use a four-spoke “Rallye” wheel, despite the build sheet!

      I would hope there’s someone who can do a reproduction of that wheel. Heck, I understand that if you need a trim piece for a 2006 Fusion, you might be SOL trying to source it from a Ford dealer parts counter!

      That one blemish would drive me INSANE, even if the rest of the car was perfect!

      • sgeffe

        Same car was on “barnfinds.com” last weekend—I look on there and BAT a few times a year for shits and giggles.

  3. Glenn Kramer

    Marvelous car! At one of our LCOC meets a few years ago, we met with a Lincoln designer who was in charge of the Designer Program. Actually, the ‘designers” who were named on the cars had little to do with the chosen color schemes, the company gave them some choices and they picked the ones they liked. Bill Blass always made good choices!


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