(first posted 10/29/2015) I’ve been on business travel this week, visiting with clients in Cedar Rapids and Des Moines, Iowa, and also in Omaha, Nebraska. It was incredible fun after my workday was over to hang out in downtown Des Moines for the first time in two years. I hit some of my favorite spots (Fong’s Pizza, Django’s) and tried out a few new ones (The Continental), having great conversations with locals along the way and documenting my adventures in pictures with my trusty Canon. And then this happened.
Following an evening that ended with a nightcap, a bag of Cornuts and watching Adult Swim on Cartoon Network (you have to make business travel work for you), I awoke to resume the serious life of an insurance underwriter. While waiting outside the hotel for my colleague, the marketing guy, to arrive in his Ecoboosted Ford Fusion, I spotted a different, white Ford sedan from another era in the morning rush hour traffic. This Granada came from seemingly out of nowhere to a spot of prominence (much like Granadas did in the U.S. market) in front of the hotel.
It dawned on me that perhaps thirty-five years ago, it might have been a fleet-issue Granada similar to this one in which I might have been riding, and also its abstract potato-peeler hood ornament I might have been staring at with the Eagles playing in the background. (I do like the Eagles, for the record.) The dealership sticker on the trunk read “Mason City Ford”, which is still in business about two hours north of Des Moines in the great state of Iowa. Wouldn’t it be something if the gentleman behind the wheel was the original owner?
CC Contributor Tom Klockau had written a piece late last year about a brown, ’77 Granada Ghia sedan for sale that had me convinced I had reversed my dislike of both brown cars and Granadas. The decadent broughaminess of his example made it look like a tasty triple-chocolate cake on wheels, even with its minor cosmetic damage. This week’s example, however, had me questioning much of my newfound Granada-love. While its condition (for a driver) was remarkable, this one’s particular trim level and color combo left me cold, as did the square-headlight ’78 restyle of these cars, in general.
Contrasted against Klockau’s brown Ghia, which was more like a delicious, fattening, hotel-lobby breakfast pastry (I regret nothing), this white one seemed more like yogurt with blueberries and granola sprinkles – a sensible choice, but no fun. I suppose its blue, vinyl roof treatment does help keep it from looking quite as much like an appliance as it could. That said, I’m just glad Ford’s mainstream, volume sedan offerings have come as far as they have in the time I went from being a toddler to a working adult.
As photographed by the author in downtown Des Moines, Iowa.
Tuesday, October 27, 2015.
- Carey Haubrick: Curbside Classic: 1980 Ford Granada – The Falcon’s Final Spin Off; and
- Dave Skinner: Curbside Classic- 1977 Mercury Monarch Ghia.