I was 17 when I first saw a 76 elite in the paper classifieds and it was like magic when I saw it, when I checked it out the guy selling it had kept it in very good condition, a little work needed, but great for the price, I payed 2100 for it and regreted not giving him more because it came with that rare 460 big block, and boy she may be a big girl, but she moves and boy I love that sound of tires peeling out, I plan to have her in show condition next year.
I bought my '76 Elite new, it has 106,000 miles, the original 460 cube monster, as well as the full vinyl top with power moon roof. The white paint did start to fade, as it was outside until '93. Since then I have repainted her, and rebuilt the 460. The only problems I have had with the car was the soft ride springs, which made it float a little to much for me. Especially over 100mph! Now with the motor having some of today's technology, the stiff rate springs, and the low profile BFG's, 150mph is no problem for this great example of American history! The saying is correct, they don't make 'em like they used to. Remember, there's no replacement for cubic displacement.
I owned one too. A '75.
I wanted to paint a hull number on it and let the Navy use it for target pratice. Nothing but a beached whale.
Every time I hear the name Elite, I cringe.
I'm 16, and I just bought a 76 Ford Elite, and I love it... Ya, it's got a lil rust, but for 200 dollars, what do you expect?
I bought the car from my uncle, because his kids didn't want it... It's got a 302 high performance engine.. ya, I would have liked to have a 351 or even better... a 460, but that 302 still gets that big boat moving fast...
I've got 3 inch pipe running from headers... it sounds amazing!
I plan on keeping my Elite for a work car, because I am getting 2x 1972 Ford Gran Torino Sports... Can't WAIT TO GET THOSE!
To the comment above this one... The Ford Elite never ever sold with a 302. From '74 until '76, the Elite sold with either a 351, a 400 or the 460, but never a 302.
This is true. The lowest C.I.D. was 351. And the smallest block being the 351 Windsor. The Ford Elite sold from 1974 to 1976, and each year had its own identifier. In 1974 the car was actually called the 1974 Ford Grand Torino Elite. In '75 and '76, it was shortened to Elite. Thereby making the '74 a one year run with those emblems.
In '76 the vinyl top was cut down to a half-vinyl top with trim. Thereby making the '76 individual, and splitting each year in its' marked traits. I ran one of these on the streets for years, and I could start rolling from a traffic light and burn out until I left off the pedal. Also I took down a Corvette after I tuned my motor back from 30 degrees BTC running.
Unfortunately someone I knew got me wrapped up and I sold it, and the motor went on into 1978 Ford Fairmont, where it reportedly took down a V12 Jaguar. 351 Windsors rule. Fords rule. Fix a Ford, junk the rest. Tell them you learned from the best.