Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Abbotsford BC Canada
Re: Torino Hood Scoop on a Granada
You may recall that I made up a BS story about the car's origins (with some help from the brain trust at FM).
In 1997, I spotted this car sitting neglected at the back of a used car lot in Bellingham, WA. It looked like it had the potential to be a unique project car, so I bought it for $500, and had it towed home. Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, and a retired Ford engineer who has asked to remain anonymous, I was able to trace the carís history. I discovered that it was a one-of-a-kind fuel injected Hurst Granada GT prototype made in 1977. The muscle car era was just a memory at that point, but after a five year hiatus, Ford still thought there would still be a market for performance cars. However, gas was getting more expensive, and the 1972 OPEC oil embargo was still fresh in everybodyís minds. This, combined with the federally mandated Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) regulations forced Ford to attempt a compromise.
This car was built in a joint project with Hurst as a one-off concept car using Fordís best-selling model of the day, the Granada. The two door version was selected to give it a sporty look to appeal to the performance car market. The intent was to make a smaller and more fuel efficient version of the discontinued Gran Torino GT, so design elements such as the hood scoop and twist hood locks were incorporated. An experimental mass air multi- port fuel injection system, roller cam, improved heads, and an overdrive manual transmission were used to optimize performance, emissions, and fuel economy. The prototypeís performance exceeded the expectations of the designers, however, it was deemed by Ford management to be too expensive for mass production. They also felt that the fuel injection system was ahead of its time and would be regarded with suspicion by consumers until it was proven; there was still some residual corporate memory of the Edsel debacle, where that model was condemned, among other things, for being ďahead of its time.Ē
The Granada GT prototype was destined for the crusher when it was rescued from that fate by a Ford executive vice president who used it as his daily driver. After he passed away, his widow, not realizing what she had, sold it to a young girl, who eventually decided it was something of a nuisance to drive in city traffic because of its size, the manual transmission, and the relatively poor gas mileage; she traded it in at a used car lot for a Toyota Tercel. Eventually, it ended up in Bellingham.
I have turned down offers in the six figures for it (including one from Jay Leno), but there is something special about owning a unique automobile, and I just have not been able to part with it.
I put that on a poster in the window at a show n shine. Not that I'm super knowledgeable, but the general public was so gullible that it wasn't even fun.... kind of like poking a tied up dog with a sharp stick. I ended up taking it down after a while. Among other things, I was asked if it was a "genuine Hurst Granada" and if it was a numbers matching car.
One guy did say that he worked for Ford for 40 years and he knew for a fact there had never been a Granada GT....... Ok, you got me!
Genuine original one-of-a-kind 1977 Hurst Granada GT