Ford Durango

 
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Ford Durango was a Ford Fairmont Futura 2-door, 5 passenger coupe modified into a 2-passenger pick-up truck by National Coach Corporation of Los Angeles, California, in 1981 (possibly into 1982, although no 1982 models have been verified as being built). It was intended to replace the Ford Ranchero which had ceased production at the end of the 1979 model year and was meant to compete with the Chevrolet El Camino. New Ford Fairmonts were delivered to National Coach Corporation which modified the body, cutting off the roof behind the b-pillar, removing the trunk and rear seat area and then inserting a fiberglass cargo bed behind the front seats. After conversion they were sold by Ford dealers nationwide. Durangos were powered by the venerable Ford 200 cubic inch inline six.

No production records were kept by either Ford or National Coach and estimates vary - but most say between 80-350 units. The Pickup, Van and 4WD magazine from December 1981 features an article about the Durango that states: "The project had been planned for an earlier date in 1981 than that which was finally achieved, so only a little over 100 units were assembled before the current-year model went out of production."

Although there are no firm production numbers, there were likely as many (if not more "one-off") "truck" conversions to Fairmonts by individuals than created by National Coach. This has led to the belief that they were produced during most or all of the years (1978-1983) of Fairmont production as these custom conversions were often labeled as Durangos by their owners. There are 2 relatively easy ways to determine if the conversion was done by National or not:

(1) Model year: The Durango was not produced by National prior to the 1981 model year and no 1983 models were produced. There is disagreement whether any 1982 models saw production - if the car in question is a 1978, 1979, 1980 or 1983 model year Fairmont - then it is not an original Durango.

(2) Functional tailgate: This is the easiest way to determine a real Durango or not. National built a functional tailgate that dropped down via hinges at the bottom. This required the addition of an approximately 3" filler panel at the back of the Fairmont's quarter panel to allow the tailgate to clear the rear bumper. (see picture)


  • autor: Davidsgonzales
    licencja: I, the copyright holder of this work, release this work into the public domain. This applies worldwide.
  • autor: Davidsgonzales
    licencja: I, the copyright holder of this work, release this work into the public domain. This applies worldwide.
  • autor: Rob Stercraw
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Some or all of the content comes from the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_Durango