Cohort Sighting: Ford LTD II Ranchero – Give The Customer What He Wants, Not What He Needs

13157090505_1807f08e57_zImage by Eric Clem

That’s one of the basic axioms of business. My first boss told me the art of systems analysis was to convince the client that what he needed was what he wanted.


So, what are we to make of this attempt to postpone the Torino’s lease on life by adding a front clip strangely reminiscent of a Monte Carlo? It obviously didn’t do what the bean counters thought it would, as the Ranchero disappeared after the sedans it was based on were discontinued. The El Camino likewise died when its donor car reached the end of its life.


The market had changed. No longer would folks sign up for whatever came down a Big Three assembly line, no matter how wretched it was (my Family had a 1977 LTD II that soured my mother and father on Fords, so I have firsthand experience with a sister of this beast). And the small imported trucks did really resolve both the wants and needs of the target segment much more effectively, leaving the car-based pickup as an idea that gets dusted off from time to time, only to discover that while it may be what is needed by those who use their trucks for personal transport and not much more, it’s not what they want, and the majority of folks patrolling the dealer lot can’t make the lines cross.