18th Mar 2009, 00:14
I own a 1974 Pinto Station wagon that I purchased used in 1981. At that time, it was showing either 107,000 or 207,000 miles on the odometer. It faithfully carried me through 2 more years of high school, and 4 years of college after that. I have purchased numerous other vehicles (all from the Ford family of fine cars) since that time, but never could make myself part with my little wagon. It is now showing either 286,000, or possibly 386,000 on the odo & is in need of a new head gasket. Car has been hooked to a wrecker twice in its life during my ownership. I would argue that it will compete with any other car ever built for reliability, driveability, and satisfaction of ownership. I've never had a fear of it exploding & it's been tested twice, once by a Nissan Sentra, that sustained major front end damage after rear ending my Pinto, & a behemoth early 70's LTD, that got the raw end of the deal as well. The new bumpers that were mandated for the 1974 models were anything but wimpy. They would probably rival what you would find on a new Hummer. Pintos were often underestimated & maligned, yet they were outstanding cars.
20th Nov 2009, 21:12
You shouldn't believe everything you read on this site. Somebody here was claiming the Pinto was inferior because of its 3 bearing crank engine.
No. Both the early 1.6 litre (a UK designed Kent crossflow) and the 2.0/2.3 OHC (also UK design called simply the "pinto" engine) were 5 bearing cranks. check out a haynes manual. They are both excellent durable engines that at the time punched well above their weight. You'd get tappet and piston ring wear with the 1.6 after about 80,000 miles, but easily fixed. The OHC engine needed 36000 mile timing belt replacement and 6000 mile oil changes. Adhere to that and it would easily see 200,000 miles, there is almost nothing to go wrong with the engines themselves. Both will keep running even when severely worn.
26th Jul 2015, 13:25
I drove a 75 wagon, 2.3/4 speed back in the late 80s when I was in college and playing Army on the side. I don't recall that the wagons ever had the fuel tank issues that the hatch/sedan models did. These cars were cheap to maintain; more durable than anyone can imagine - I can attest because I thoroughly abused mine. The wagon was most useful. The car handled well on snow & ice. Mine, despite being rebuilt at least once by a drunk, was pretty reliable.
Pintos are rare today, and prices are higher than I'd like to pay, but they were a good car in their day.