1969 Ford Torino Apparel and Accessories by Legend Lines
For 1968, Ford redesigned its intermediate Fairlane line and introduced a new premium subseries model, the Torino. A new addition for 1968 was the two-door fastback "SportsRoof" bodystyle. Similar to Mustang fastback models, it featured a gently sloped roof line that extended to the edge of the trunk lid. This new fastback body style gave the Torino excellent aerodynamics that would later prove to be advantageous on the race track. Ford had several different models in its intermediate line for 1968 which consisted of a 2-door formal (notchback) hardtop, a 4-door sedan, and the Squire station wagon that featured wood grained applique. Finally, the "Torino GT", the sporty version of the Fairlane 500 series, included the formal hardtop, the SportsRoof hardtop, and a convertible. The Torino GT's standard features included special name plaques and exterior trim, GT markings on wheel covers. The Torino GT was available with a GT handling suspension package, which included extra-heavy-duty springs and shocks, and a heavy-duty front anti-sway bar. Of note, when the 428 CJ engine was installed, the suspensions used the stiffest springs and largest front sway bar compared to other Torinos with the heavy-duty suspension. GTs were available with a stripe option, which started as a 'C' shape at the edge of the front fender, and two body stripes extended the length of the car. Torino GT models came standard with a 302 cu in small block V8. Other available engines included a 390 cu in FE engine, and a 427 cu in FE engine. About one month within the beginning of the 1968 model year production, a six-week UAW strike against Ford occurred. This resulted in a cost-cutting measure of making a 289 cu in (4.7 L)-2V small block V8 the base V8 engine and the standard engine on the Torino GT. Ford did not change any of its factory sales literature to reflect this change. While the 427 cu in engine was initially listed as an engine option for 1968 in factory literature, no Torinos were actually produced with this engine during 1968. Introduced on April 1, 1968, the 428 cu in (7.0 L)-4V CJ (Cobra-Jet) FE engine became available as an engine option, but due to its mid-year introduction these engines are very rare. The 428-4V Cobra-Jet was the most potent engine available for 1968, and is general believed to be under-rated at 335 hp. All models came standard with a three-speed manual transmission, while the C4 Cruise-O-Matic automatic and four-speed manual transmissions were options. According to contemporary reviews, when equipped properly the Torino GT offered a good combination of power and handling. Motor Trend magazine wrote "Putting the car through quick and/or tight corners isn't a matter of practiced art – it's more like second nature for the GT" in their test. Car and Driver magazine tested Torino GT equipped with the 428 CJ with Ram Air induction, and recorded a quarter-mile time of 14.2 seconds at 98.9 mph. Car and Driver wrote the Torino had "a 1–2 shift that broke the Wide-Ovals loose for at least a length. With a price tag of $306 for the Cobra-Jet option, Ford lovers have a reason to rejoice. 1968 was a successful year for Torino with 172,083 units produced. The Torino was well received by the automotive press and a 1968 Torino GT convertible was selected as the 1968 Indianapolis 500 pace car.
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