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buzzflood

Looking for info re Lesabre Limited Collector's Edition

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The Centurion is not an apples to apples comparison to any period Lincoln. They were meant to be fast with a degree of luxury as they had the big block 455 from 71-72 and the 455 was optional in 1973.

An apples to apples comparison is the Electra Limited from this period. I have owned 2 1972 Limiteds. Both had cloth interiors. Leather was not an option that I am aware of but in terms of style, all other measures of luxury - they were the equal of Lincoln.

And Buick had the Riviera. If the entire argument is based on vinyl versus leather then I guess Lincoln wins.

It was not my idea to compare Buick and Lincoln interiors. However, I believe vinyl is much too cheap a material to be used on any full size Buick. You could get a Ford Granada with a plusher velour interior. So I really think it was unacceptable for Buick to be using vinyl. The 80's interiors were more tasteful. However, for the 1970's, you would have to get one of the rare fabric or velour interiors on an extremely well optioned car to get the same level of luxury offered standard on a base Lincoln. This makes sense since as I already said, Buick was not intended to compete with Lincoln. Also Oldsmobile seemed to have a lot more choices in fabric and velour than Buick with a lot less emphasis on vinyl during that same time period, and Buick was supposed to be the more expensive car.

Edited by LINC400 (see edit history)

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And of course there are these spartan offerings, I even tossed in a vinyl one for your pleasure

As you can see, the Buick interiors where really subpar to that of the Lincolns - ROFLMAO:rolleyes:

Those would be the most expensive interior options on the top of the line Electra Limited/Park Ave. So you would have to get the most expensive interior in the most expensive Electra in order to have an interior of the same quality as a base Lincoln. Also it would have to be extremely well optioned in order to compete with Lincolns standard equipment.

Edited by LINC400 (see edit history)

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LINC, If you go all the way back to my original advice to this poster, I said as much. The 85 "Collectors Edition" Lesabre was nothing. It is certainly no reason to purchase one.

We agree there. The Buick Collector Edition was no comparison to Lincoln's Collectors Series. That was the whole point of my post.

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Guest my3buicks

To be fair I thought I should post a pic of a sumptuous :( Lincoln interior - I would believe this would be the standard interior - looks kind of plain compared to the above Park Ave interiors, I guess more in line with a Standard Electra interior.:rolleyes:

post-30591-143138132214_thumb.jpg

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Looks a lot better than vinyl, which is what the majority of 1970's Buicks had. Considering I've seen a lot of 1970's Electras, and have never even seen any with these console interiors, that is most obviously not your average Electra interior. So if you wanted to buy the absolute top of the line Electra, equip it with the most expensive interior option, and order every option on it so that you were at a higher price than a basic Cadillac, you could get a car as plush as a Lincoln. However, I see no point to that entire discussion which has nothing to do with the original post.

The post was about the Collectors Edition LeSabre. Which as I have said was copied from Lincoln, was nowhere near as plush, and had nowhere near the effort Lincoln put into it. Care to explain how a hood ornament, dash plaque, and portfolio make the car as special or plush as all the items made standard on the Collectors Series Lincoln? Not to mention the fact that some people have not even heard of the Collectors Edition Buick, or those that like Buicks don't even think it is worth anything more than a standard LeSabre? As I already said, the Lincoln Collectors Series commands a premium over the standard 1979's. Does the Buick? According to price guides the Lincoln Collectors Series commands a premium. The Buick Collector Edition isn't even mentioned, while a/c and a V-8 are listed as what adds value to a LeSabre. Both are standard on the bottom of the line Lincoln.

Edited by LINC400 (see edit history)

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Frankly I find this digression from the original topic somewhat idiotic, but what the hell I'll wade in.

With a few notable exceptions Lincoln has always been an also-ran to Cadillac.

The '85 to '91 GM 'C-Body' cars (with the exception of the DeVilles) were extremely successful, were "right-sized" for the their time and were much better cars than those they replaced in terms of performance, economy, handling, quality and contemporaneity of style. Ford's dire financial straights prevented them from updating their product lines to make the smaller models that the prevailing wisdom indicated would be in demand due to the universally-predicted surge in gasoline prices. That the cost of gasoline fell rather than rising saved the company and by that lucky break Ford was able to continue and thrive on the back of their ancient Lincoln line-up, particularly the Town Car which was an incredible profit center as its tooling was long ago paid-for.

Ford has been able to forgo bailout monies due to their mortgaging every corporate asset for loans early in 2007, before the meltdown of the financial market. This was a last-ditch effort to fund a complete re-vamping of their product lines to hopefully reverse their sliding market share. They have apparently invested those finds wisely as evidenced by their current vehicle line-up, and I am happy to see them resurgent, but it's not like GM has been asleep at the switch either. Cadillac's line-up is more exciting and contemporary than its been in prolly 50 years, the new LaCrosse and Enclave are genuinely attractive and competitive with all comers, and quality is across-the-board the best it has ever been.

Comparing ersatz luxury-cues, especially in the context of the era when all that was in the process of being rejected by the car-buying public is pretty silly IMO. In the present day, the domestic makes of the seventies and the early eighties are rightfully looked on with some disdain. They were almost universally too big, too thirsty, poorly handling, over-styled, under-engineered, indifferently screwed-together, under-performing junk. That we love 'em doesn't change the facts. (For the record, I own and love an '84 Seville Elegante mostly due to how over-wrought and over the top a design it is, so you shouldn't take offense from my observations, I'm one of yous).

Accusing GM of "stealing" something as generic as "collector edition" is laughable, especially in the context of and during the era when almost every Lincoln model rolled out was often a poorly-executed reaction to Cadillac's marketing moves (Versailles and '82 Continental anyone?). But in any case if a competitor has discovered an profitable niche be it smaller luxury cars or premium option packages only an idiot wouldn't try to exploit it by rolling out an offering to try to get a piece of the action, which I suppose brings my rambling full circle to "boy is this a dumb tangent". :rolleyes:

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With a few notable exceptions Lincoln has always been an also-ran to Cadillac.

The '85 to '91 GM 'C-Body' cars (with the exception of the DeVilles) were extremely successful, were "right-sized" for the their time and were much better cars than those they replaced in terms of performance, economy, handling, quality and contemporaneity of style. Ford's dire financial straights prevented them from updating their product lines to make the smaller models that the prevailing wisdom indicated would be in demand due to the universally-predicted surge in gasoline prices. That the cost of gasoline fell rather than rising saved the company and by that lucky break Ford was able to continue and thrive on the back of their ancient Lincoln line-up, particularly the Town Car which was an incredible profit center as its tooling was long ago paid-for.

Comparing ersatz luxury-cues, especially in the context of the era when all that was in the process of being rejected by the car-buying public is pretty silly IMO. In the present day, the domestic makes of the seventies and the early eighties are rightfully looked on with some disdain. They were almost universally too big, too thirsty, poorly handling, over-styled, under-engineered, indifferently screwed-together, under-performing junk. That we love 'em doesn't change the facts. (For the record, I own and love an '84 Seville Elegante mostly due to how over-wrought and over the top a design it is, so you shouldn't take offense from my observations, I'm one of yous).

Accusing GM of "stealing" something as generic as "collector edition" is laughable, especially in the context of and during the era when almost every Lincoln model rolled out was often a poorly-executed reaction to Cadillac's marketing moves (Versailles and '82 Continental anyone?). But in any case if a competitor has discovered an profitable niche be it smaller luxury cars or premium option packages only an idiot wouldn't try to exploit it by rolling out an offering to try to get a piece of the action, which I suppose brings my rambling full circle to "boy is this a dumb tangent". :rolleyes:

If you prefer Cadillacs, that is your opinion. However to say that Lincoln was an also-ran to Cadillac is not true. The 1960's Lincolns had nothing in common with Cadillac. They were understated and timeless as opposed to Cadillac's flashier look that changed every 2 years. One is not necessarily better than the other. It depends on what you prefer. The Mark series Lincolns outsold the Eldorado every single year with Eldo offering both a coupe and convertible. The 4 door Cadillacs outsold the Continental/Town Car, but the Continental was also priced much higher than the DeVille. Fleetwoods did not have huge sales volumes either. Lincoln sales actually picked up a lot in 1977 when Cadillac downsized, and remained high through 1979. The Versailles and 1982 Continental were not Lincolns best. But how about a Cimmaron or Catera? How great are those?

My personal opinion is I do not care how wonderfully a car drives, what gas mileage it gets, how nice the interior might be if a car's styling is unattractive to me. I have to see it every day and be seen in it. The 1985-86 Full size GM's were most definitely not a styling improvement in my opinion.

Chicago used to be prime Buick territory. When the Roadmaster came out in 1992, one Chicago auto critic bashed it as being a dinosaur. That drew a huge response from Chicago Buick dealers that bashed him right back. They stated that they could not believe the huge number of 1970's-1984 Buicks and Oldsmobiles that came in on trade. There were also a lot of Caprices, Crown Vics, and Marquis that came in on trade. They said that their traditional buyers either held on to their old cars or switched to Chevy, Ford, or Mercury because Buick and Olds were not offering the type of car they wanted. And they were thrilled that Buick finally came out with a car that their traditional buyers wanted.

Ford did not downsize when GM did because they did not think that the public would like the smaller cars. Not because they had financial problems. They finally did downsize a couple years later. But in a way, they were right. When Lincoln downsized in 1980, their sales dropped to about a third of 1979's.

It seems unbelievably coincidental that both Lincoln and Buick independently decided to offer Collector versions of the last of their full size models. Especially since Buick's came 6 years later. GM offered their own ersatz special editions. Fleetwood Talisman, Eldorado Biarritz and Bicentennial editions, etc. Those were their own ideas and I see nothing wrong with that. The Collector Edition, however, was a blatant copy. The fact that it was copied alone wasn't that bad. Automakers copy each other all the time. It was the fact that it was copied and zero effort was put into it. The special editions were hardly rejected by the public as more and more special ersatz editions rolled out from every manufacturer as the 70's rolled on. In fact Lincoln seemed to be the most succcessful with them as special editions accounted for more than 30% of their sales. To each his own, but personally I like the special editions. It is a way of getting a car that is a little more unique than your average model. The exact same way and reason that they sold when they were new.

I also disagree with the disdain for the 1970's cars. IMO that is the last era that cars were sold based on style. Not fuel economy, bean counting or other ideas that make the cars less interesting. They also had the most to deal with in that decade with fuel shortages, crash standards, emission standards, and lots of other goverment interference that previously did not exist. Yet they managed to produce lines of cars with style and actual size differences and a variety of body styles. Unlike today when everything is a 4 door sedan that is pretty much the same look and size as everything else.

Edited by LINC400 (see edit history)

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Guest my3buicks

Here is a picture of a coveted "Collector Series" Town Car, still doesn't appear to measure up to the plush interiors of the Park Avenues.

I am not sure what one company calling a gingerbread edition of there normal cars "Collector Series" has any bearing on another company calling all of it's final run of a particular year "Collector Edition". Lincoln claimed the "Collector Series" to be a step above the run of the mill Lincolns, I don't believe Buick ever lauded the LeSabre "Collector Edition" as being any more than an end of an era.

To me "Collector Series" and "Collector Edition" are two completely different animals.

Type in "Collector Series" on your web browser and see how many thousands of other companies have copied Lincolns lead and have "Collector Series". Lincoln sure did start a revolution

post-30591-143138132234_thumb.jpg

Edited by my3buicks (see edit history)

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What supposedly doesn't measure up to the Electra interior? I suspect I could post pictures of the plushest interiors Lincoln ever offered, and they still supposedly won't be as plush as the Electra. Interesting how the LeSabre (subject of this post) and Centurion interiors don't count. Also the vinyl interiors which were in probably 80% of 1970's Buicks don't either. We are only supposed to count the absolute plushest interior in the absolute top of the line Electra which was probably in a handful of cars to show how Buick interiors are supposed to be so much better than Lincolns.

By the way Lincoln put much less effort into the Town Car Collector Series (your pic) than the Mark V Collector Series. But still a lot more than Buick put into the Collector LeSabre.

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Guest my3buicks

I would believe you have your figures backwards, I would think that a substantial number more Electra's came with cloth than vinyl. If we need to, I could get the exact figures for 72 to substantiate that, should be a good indicator anyway.

Another pic attached, this one of a LeSabre Limited Collectors Ed. in question - pretty plush for a price point that Lincoln couldn't touch. Actually much more plush than the green Lincoln interior posted earlier, and as plush as the :Collector Series: pictured above.

For the record I happen to really like the big Lincolns of that era.

post-30591-14313813229_thumb.jpg

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WHEN manufacturers did their downsizing in the 1980s, it had more to do with when the particular platform was replaced with a smaller and more fuel-efficient one rather than what any other brand was doing. Every platform has a life cycle and that's what determines what happens when.

Some less vintage individuals might not remember when "vinyl" was a definite vehicle interior "fabric" choice. Leather was not the "upscale" choice it later became . . . after the "age of crushed velour". Remember, too, that "vinyl" was originally termed "leatherette", or "leather-look" without the high price of real leather. Later, by the 1980s, vinyl did not mimic leather nearly as much.

There were ALSO varying qualities of vinyl interior materials. Some were classy, some weren't (i.e., Ford Fairmont), but much of how well they looked depended upon the "gauge" (i.e., thickness of the outer wear surface) and the quality of the backing . . . plus how it was sewn for the seat covers.

In many cases, including in more recent times, "full leather" seat covers seemed to digress into "leather seating surfaces" as something of a cost containment issue. In many of these cases, the vinyl was hard to tell from "the real stuff".

When the two choices were with cloth or vinyl, the cloth interiors were generally the spiffier choice with metallic yarns, brocades, embroidery . . . and better choices than the more expensive leather for long-term durability (if not destroyed by owners and their habits). Back then, unless leather was treated with presevatives and such (who would want to shine shoes with the surface area of a Lincoln or Cadillac interior?), plus being expensive to repair (either from age cracks or damage) if needed.

In prior times, EVERYBODY had a good looking vinyl interior option, except for the luxury brands which had leather. Kind of like many people allowing vinyl floor tiles in their homes, but mention "linoleum" to them and they might go into "the shakes". If the vehicle was a higher trim level of the particular model, it was a nicer vinyl interior than what the base trim level was . . . in colors (remember COLORS???) and how it was all sewn together.

Oh, and don't forget about the pearl-tinted vinyl color codes! Or the metallic-tinted vinyls either! Whether used as the outer sections on the cloth/vinyl seats or in the full-vinyl interiors. Or the "knitted vinyl" that was used to help address the "heat" factor of vinyl seats by allowing some built-in ventilation, similar to the later perforated leather inserts on many vehicles.

It was not the type of interior seating fabrics (whether fabric or "coated fabric" or leather) that would make a particular vehicle's interior "befitting" or not, it was how the particular fabric(s) were sewn together, their colors, and combinations with knitted fabric/vinyl/leather to reflect the luxury level of the respective brand of vehicle. The full vinyl bench seat interior of a 1973 Buick Apollo was a pretty fine place to be--it looked like it belonged in a BUICK, too!

Regards,

NTX5467

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Guest my3buicks

Some details:

of 172,122 Electra's built in 1972, which include base models, custom models, and Limited models, 58% had cloth, 42 % vinyl - the breakdown as one would expect had a higher percentage of vinyl in the base and custom models than the Limited. I would assume that that number stayed somewhat consistant throughout the 70's, maybe leaning more toward cloth into the middle to later 70's as tastes changed.

Edited by my3buicks (see edit history)

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If you prefer Cadillacs, that is your opinion. However to say that Lincoln was an also-ran to Cadillac is not true. The 1960's Lincolns had nothing in common with Cadillac. They were understated and timeless as opposed to Cadillac's flashier look that changed every 2 years. One is not necessarily better than the other. It depends on what you prefer. The Mark series Lincolns outsold the Eldorado every single year with Eldo offering both a coupe and convertible. The 4 door Cadillacs outsold the Continental/Town Car, but the Continental was also priced much higher than the DeVille. Fleetwoods did not have huge sales volumes either.
It's not that I prefer Cadillacs, the car-buying public preferred them, which is the only metric that matters, no? I truly admire the Lincoln models of the sixties, but that doesn't change the fact that Cadillac pretty much always out sold Lincoln, and probably more to the point that Cadillac has always always had a much larger mind-share of the American public and probably always will.
The Versailles and 1982 Continental were not Lincolns best. But how about a Cimmaron or Catera? How great are those?
I referenced the Versailles and the '82 Continental as they are indisputably illustrations of Ford reacting to Cadillac's moves rather than leading. The Cimarron would have been a deemed a masterstroke if fuel prices had moved to the predicted $ 3.00 a gallon (in '80s pricing, prolly around $ 7.00 a gallon in today's prices). That the execution was flawed is endemic of the domestics of the time period. The Cimarron actually sold pretty well at first, at least until people discovered how awful the initial models were, after that no amount of improvements were going to improve its standing in the marketplace. The DeVille/Fleetwood 'C-Bodies' (and the '86 Eldo/Seville 'E-Bodies) were also designed under the $ 3.00/gallon gas price paradigm which if it happened would have literally buried FoMoCo. That it thankfully didn't happen (hell, gas dropped under a dollar in the mid-eighties) saved Ford from oblivion as Trucks and the Town Car, which would have been DOA under the predicted high gas price conditions provided massive profits that saved the company from oblivion.
Ford did not downsize when GM did because they did not think that the public would like the smaller cars. Not because they had financial problems.
With all due respect, you're wrong. It was widely reported at this time, and in contemporary interviews with Ford brass that this was precisely the case. Here's a quote from an article from '92: AT FORD, TRUCKS -- AND LINCOLNS -- TO THE RESCUE As the only U.S. carmaker to gain market share over the past ten years, Ford has been both lucky and smart. Lucky because it couldn't afford to downsize its cars as quickly as GM did -- so after gas prices fell again in the early 1980s it captured buyers who wanted big, traditional autos like the Lincoln Town Car. But Ford was smart to turn its attention to trucks, a backwater that is now a bonanza. Former Ford and Chrysler executive Bennett Bidwell says flatly: ''The Taurus didn't save Ford. Trucks and Lincolns did.'' but there was plenty other corroborating sources and analysis at the time as well if you care to dig it up.

U.S. CARS COME BACK - November 16, 1992

And they were thrilled that Buick finally came out with a car that their traditional buyers wanted.
It is worth noting that while the '91-96 'B-bodies" were indeed a traditional body-on-frame vehicles they featured thoroughly modern styling, and in any case never really achieved massive sales volumes as the buyers with a strong preference for these types of car were literally dying off and everyone else who needed the towing capabilities of old-school cars moved into SUVs.
I also disagree with the disdain for the 1970's cars. IMO that is the last era that cars were sold based on style. Not fuel economy, bean counting or other ideas that make the cars less interesting.
That's all fine and good, but realize that you (and I) and prolly 90% of the people who participate on these forums are eccentric out-liers who in no way shape or form resemble the average car buyer, and in most cases don't buy new cars unless the missus insists on having new, reliable iron for her to drive. And no matter how much you (and I) might love 'em it is indesputable that the domestics of the seventies (especially Cadillacs and Lincolns) were almost universally too big, too thirsty, poorly handling, over-styled, under-engineered, indifferently screwed-together, under-performing junk.

And to get back to your initial assertion, "collector edition" is generic in the extreme, if it is a comfort to you to imagine that this was some sort of genius option package that Lincoln innovated with and was copied by other makes, have at it and enjoy. :rolleyes:

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It's not that I prefer Cadillacs, the car-buying public preferred them, which is the only metric that matters, no? I truly admire the Lincoln models of the sixties, but that doesn't change the fact that Cadillac pretty much always out sold Lincoln, and probably more to the point that Cadillac has always always had a much larger mind-share of the American public and probably always will.

Chevrolet outsold Buick and Cadillac every year. Does that mean Cadillac and Buick were also-rans, and Chevy was better? I don't think so. Just because a model sold more does not necessarily make it better. Duesenberg did not sell many cars. Does that make them an also-ran?

I referenced the Versailles and the '82 Continental as they are indisputably illustrations of Ford reacting to Cadillac's moves rather than leading. The Cimarron would have been a deemed a masterstroke if fuel prices had moved to the predicted $ 3.00 a gallon (in '80s pricing, prolly around $ 7.00 a gallon in today's prices). That the execution was flawed is endemic of the domestics of the time period. The Cimarron actually sold pretty well at first, at least until people discovered how awful the initial models were, after that no amount of improvements were going to improve its standing in the marketplace. The DeVille/Fleetwood 'C-Bodies' (and the '86 Eldo/Seville 'E-Bodies) were also designed under the $ 3.00/gallon gas price paradigm which if it happened would have literally buried FoMoCo. That it thankfully didn't happen (hell, gas dropped under a dollar in the mid-eighties) saved Ford from oblivion as Trucks and the Town Car, which would have been DOA under the predicted high gas price conditions provided massive profits that saved the company from oblivion.

Lincoln is not the only automaker to produce models in reaction to someone else's. ALL automakers have done that at some point or another. $3.00 a gallon gas or not, I would rather have a Versailles than a Cimmarron. I am not a fan of the Versailles, but it was a very well made car every bit as good as the Seville. There are all kinds of reports on the quality tests done on them. What was unfortunate for Ford, is that while the Nova and Cavalier had plain sides and very non-descript styling, the Granada had very distinctive sculptured sides. Making the Versailles origin immediately recognizeable. However, I think the Cimmarron was even less disguised than the Versailles.

With all due respect, you're wrong. It was widely reported at this time, and in contemporary interviews with Ford brass that this was precisely the case. Here's a quote from an article from '92: AT FORD, TRUCKS -- AND LINCOLNS -- TO THE RESCUE As the only U.S. carmaker to gain market share over the past ten years, Ford has been both lucky and smart. Lucky because it couldn't afford to downsize its cars as quickly as GM did -- so after gas prices fell again in the early 1980s it captured buyers who wanted big, traditional autos like the Lincoln Town Car. But Ford was smart to turn its attention to trucks, a backwater that is now a bonanza. Former Ford and Chrysler executive Bennett Bidwell says flatly: ''The Taurus didn't save Ford. Trucks and Lincolns did.'' but there was plenty other corroborating sources and analysis at the time as well if you care to dig it up.

And is this article by a reporter that also reports on the stock market and current events, or does he actually have an automotive background? The books I have state that Henry Ford II (I think it was II?) did not like the downsized GM's, and did not want to downsize because he thought they would not sell. They did sell, and Ford responded very quickly. He was right in a way, as the downsized Lincolns initially did not sell. Chrysler did not downsize either. That was GM's thing. However I would say Chrysler was due to financial problems, not a stubborn Henry Ford II. The Taurus/Sable outsold the Crown Vic/Marquis. However, both were available for the buyer to chose from, or for whatever way gas prices swung. Not so with GM's 1985-6 downsizing.

It is worth noting that while the '91-96 'B-bodies" were indeed a traditional body-on-frame vehicles they featured thoroughly modern styling, and in any case never really achieved massive sales volumes as the buyers with a strong preference for these types of car were literally dying off and everyone else who needed the towing capabilities of old-school cars moved into SUVs.

Large 4 door cars were deemed "grandpa cars" at that time, and were out of favor. Look at a 1968 Cadillac. Not a sports car obviously. But sporty for a large car, and with a large performance engine. Even more so for the Eldorado. 1971-76 Cadillacs (and I do like them) were much more grandpa-ish in terms of styling. They still had big engines, but they did not perform as well with all the newly added emissions crap. Plus they were focusing on being smooth as opposed to being fast at that time. By 1984 you had a 4 door Cadillac with a 4.1 liter V-8. Certainly no performance there. Lincoln of course followed suit in 1980. Leaving large luxury 4 doors as old people cars to avoid as opposed the most desireable best of styling, engineering, performance, etc that they were in the 1950's and 1960's. By the way, I worked for a Chevy dealer in 1991. I liked the look of the new Caprice. However, the elderly buyers did not like the more modern aero-look. It was too radical for them. Also it drove, handled, and braked much worse and more sluggishly than my 1979 Cougar which was the same size. Giving credit to the grandpa statements about that type of car at that time.

That's all fine and good, but realize that you (and I) and prolly 90% of the people who participate on these forums are eccentric out-liers who in no way shape or form resemble the average car buyer, and in most cases don't buy new cars unless the missus insists on having new, reliable iron for her to drive. And no matter how much you (and I) might love 'em it is indesputable that the domestics of the seventies (especially Cadillacs and Lincolns) were almost universally too big, too thirsty, poorly handling, over-styled, under-engineered, indifferently screwed-together, under-performing junk.

I do not like small cars. While not the best for parallel parking, I'd rather have a too big 70's car than a too small new one. That is a personal opinion. As far as poorly handling, poorly engineered, junk, that depends on the individual car. For its size, a Mark V handles, brakes, and performs very well. The stablemate Town Car however, does not handle and perform as well. However neither are indifferently put together. My complaint would be the amount of plastic in the 1970's as opposed to the 1960's Lincolns. However, all manufacturers had to do that in the 1970's in order to try to reduce weight and costs. But that does not necessarily make them bad cars. I can't really comment on 1970's GM's as I have not had that much experience with them.

New car buyers were for the most part not car people in the 1970's, and they are not now. Currently the collector focus is all about muscle cars. I would like to think that somwhere in the future, the 1970's luxury cars will be appreciated as the 1930's-50's ones are. They are vehicles that you simply cannot get anything like anymore. Whereas you can still get a new muscle car. However, I really don't see a newer Honda Accord, Taurus, Camry, Century etc, ever causing a huge collector following.

And to get back to your initial assertion, "collector edition" is generic in the extreme, if it is a comfort to you to imagine that this was some sort of genius option package that Lincoln innovated with and was copied by other makes, have at it and enjoy. :rolleyes:

As I already said, special editions were nothing new. However, I would say it was a genius move for Lincoln to focus and put the effort into them that they did. The Bicentennial edition Eldo convert was also a genius move by Cadillac. I believe most ended up selling for double list price. However, if you are going to copy the name of someone else's edition. At least put some effort into it to make it better or at least different. If Lincoln offered a Bicentennial edition and put zero effort into it, I would think it was just as tacky.

Edited by LINC400 (see edit history)

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WHEN manufacturers did their downsizing in the 1980s, it had more to do with when the particular platform was replaced with a smaller and more fuel-efficient one rather than what any other brand was doing. Every platform has a life cycle and that's what determines what happens when.

Automakers copy each other all the time. Downsizing was GM's thing. Ford did follow suit in 1979-81. However, they did not do a second round of downsizing they way GM did in 1985-6.

Some less vintage individuals might not remember when "vinyl" was a definite vehicle interior "fabric" choice.

There were ALSO varying qualities of vinyl interior materials. Some were classy, some weren't (i.e., Ford Fairmont), but much of how well they looked depended upon the "gauge" (i.e., thickness of the outer wear surface) and the quality of the backing . . . plus how it was sewn for the seat covers.

In prior times, EVERYBODY had a good looking vinyl interior option, except for the luxury brands which had leather.

It was not the type of interior seating fabrics (whether fabric or "coated fabric" or leather) that would make a particular vehicle's interior "befitting" or not, it was how the particular fabric(s) were sewn together, their colors, and combinations with knitted fabric/vinyl/leather to reflect the luxury level of the respective brand of vehicle. The full vinyl bench seat interior of a 1973 Buick Apollo was a pretty fine place to be--it looked like it belonged in a BUICK, too!

Regards,

NTX5467

Vinyl is simply not a choice material for seats. I had a 1979 Cougar that had very plush LOOKING vinyl seats. They were not plush. They were scalding hot in summer, freezing in winter. Your clothes would get all sweated up in the summer even after they cooled down, and also in the winter after they warmed up. They cracked and split horribly, and while leather eventually splits, it is not as quickly as vinyl. And while split leather seats look bad, you can still drive on them. The split vinyl will stab and scratch you.

In any case I do not see how anybody can be arguing that a company that offered vinyl seats in most of its cars had plusher interiors than company that did not use any vinyl, only leather and velour.

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Some details:

of 172,122 Electra's built in 1972, which include base models, custom models, and Limited models, 58% had cloth, 42 % vinyl - the breakdown as one would expect had a higher percentage of vinyl in the base and custom models than the Limited. I would assume that that number stayed somewhat consistant throughout the 70's, maybe leaning more toward cloth into the middle to later 70's as tastes changed.

Cloth seats alone do not make a plush interior. You could get cloth seats in a Pinto. I do not consider them plush. I would agree that the Electra interiors you showed from 75-76? with the consoles are plush. I would like to know how many of those were made. That is the interior I say only a handful of were made.

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Guest my3buicks

That interior on the 75/76 that you refer to was the standard interior in the Park Avenues, all them had it, the console part was an option and one not usually found in big cars of any make.

So I give you some statistics and you change your tune, now it's cloth seats alone don't make it plush.(which I agree when looking at the green Lincolns spartan interior) I understand completely where you are blindly coming from now.:rolleyes: We will continue enjoying the luxury our Buicks give us with a smile on our face knowing a big Buick can upstage many Lincolns both in the past and today with the new ones.

post-30591-14313813242_thumb.jpg

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I've been following this discussion with some interest as I used to work in a Lincoln Mercury dealership from the early 70's until the mid 80's. From when I was late in my teen's until my early 30's. I drove literally thousands of the 70's era Lincoln's, Town Cars, Mark IV's and V's in every possible configuration from base models to the Designer/Collectors Series. At the same time, my father had a series of Buick Electra's. He had a '72, '74 and '76. In fact I was with him at the Buick dealer in the fall of '75 when he ordered the '76 Electra Limited. It was very well loaded, and if my memory serves me right, the sticker price was right around $9600. Lincoln had a few options that were not available in the Buick, leather being one of them, but not many others.

Nothing I have said so far makes me an expert on either car, but just thought I'd give my thoughts since I was very familiar with both. In my opinion, the Buick Electra Limited with the cloth seats was everything that a comparably equipped Lincoln Town Car was with the upgraded cloth interior. Would I consider one to be better than the other? No. But you have to consider that the $9600 my dad paid for the '76 Electra Limited would have run him closer to $13,000 or $14,000 for the Lincoln Town Car. In my mind, it would have been hard to justify spending the additional money for not a lot more than being able to say you drove a Lincoln instead of a Buick.

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Cloth vs vinyl? Maybe vinyl was ordered for practical reasons like: a family with children or old folks with a 'control problem' :eek:

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Guest my3buicks

Wow, that would have opened a whole new realm for advertising.

"In case your depends fail, "Depend on BUICK"

"We Got Your Back"

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The Park Ave was an interior trim package on the Electra in 1975-6, not a seperate model. So I cannot even find production figures on it. So as I said, probably a handful were made. So it is not exactly like all Park Ave's were a model that came with that interior standard. That interior was what made the Park Ave trim option. Regular Electras did not have that interior.

The green Lincoln interior is a bottom of the line Continental from 1975-79 with base interior. What does a bottom of the line Buick interior look like from 1975-76? How about a bottom of the line Cadillac? Not any more plush I'm sure. If you want to compare the bottom of the line Lincoln with probably 5%-15% of absolute top of the line Buicks, and claim that Buicks are better, have at it. If you compare the top of the line to bottom of the line anything, I would hope the top of the line would be better unless there was a huge difference such as Rolls Royce vs. Yugo. Otherwise why would anyone pay more for the premium models?

If you want to compare apples to apples, look up a 1976 Mark IV with Majestic Velour interior. It doesn't look any less plush to me than a Park Ave. I'd say it looks even more plush. As far as Lincoln costing more than Buick, so did Cadillac, and how much did they offer that you couldn't get on a Buick or top of the line Mercury? People paid more then to have the Cadillac or Lincoln nameplate sitting in their driveway to impress the neighbors. The same as they do now with Mercedes and BMW.

Personally I think if the Buick vinyl interiors were intended for those wearing Depends, it would have been more useful to have them in the last 20 years than in the 1970's.

Edited by LINC400 (see edit history)

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I'm really beginning to wonder about the cognitive abilities of my fellow hobbyists..... :eek:

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Personally I think if the Buick vinyl interiors were intended for those wearing Depends, it would have been more useful to have them in the last 20 years than in the 1970's.

No, You dont see the point, the 70's were before Depends so that is when the vinyl seats were really needed.

How about this for a slogan "You can depend on Buicks to keep the interior looking nice".

Edited by Bill Stoneberg (see edit history)

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Guest BJM

Well, it's too bad it's gotten to this point. There is certainly nothing to be gained from further discussion.

Vinyl is less desirable then clothe but has it's attributes. As my brother once said about his Torino, "this car has the rare hide of the Nauga"!

The bottom line is the hobby is large enough for all tastes. I can't think of one car I would slam if the person who brought it to the car show truly enjoys it's ownership as part of this hobby. Pintos, Vegas, four door sedans all inclusive.

And, I would personally never purchase a tagged car called a Collectors Edition etc. The car needs to stand on it's own merits. I think the Editions car of Lincoln were a "sizzle of the steak" ploy from Lee. LINC400, you know what I mean by that.

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Buick "outplushed" Lincoln?? In whose opinion besides yours?

Ummm.........mine. And considering that in the past Keith and I have disagreed on more than we agreed on , and that we both agree on this ought to tell you something. Ill put the interior of my 77 Limited up against the interior of any 70s Lincoln. And my interior is still original from 77. I dont think there are a whole lot of 70s Lincolns still sporting their factory installed interior. Also I would like to add that many of the 80s midsize Buicks were plusher than the Lincolns of the 70s. Hell man I had an 81 Skylark Limited compact that was incredibly plush and would have given any Lincoln a run for its money.

My car is NOT a Park Avenue edition it is a Limited. The Park was even plusher than the Limited. Now I dont have TOTAL production numbers in front of me for the Limited but what I can remember is that 33,000 of them were 2 doors like mine. But once again thats just the 2 door Limited , which does not give us numbers for the 4 door or the Estate Wagon. So I seriously doubt we are talking low numbers here for plush interiors

Of course this is a Buick board and you have to know that we are going to feel this way.

Dan

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Edited by Dans 77 Limited (see edit history)

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