During its production lifespan, beginning in 1955 and continuing (nearly uninterrupted) through 2005, was produced in a number of body configurations over eleven model generations. The Ninth Generation was introduced in 1983 and continued through 1988. It continued to rest on the Fox body platform of the previous Thunderbird, but featured a more aerodynamic and sleeker body with a shorter 104.2-inch wheelbase. Power was from a 3.8-liter Essex V6 and a 5.0-liter V8, carried over from the previous generation with the V8 unit receiving CFI electronic fuel injection in 1983, and the V6 in 1984 for United States models. The Canadian market would receive the fuel injection motor the following year.
For 1984, visual changes were minimal. The Heritage series was renamed elan and a new Fila model was introduced, which had unique light oxford gray over charcoal paint, with red and blue tape stripes in accordance with the company's logo. There were Fila charcoal components inside, a body-color grille and wheels, and charcoal windshield. There were oxford gray cloth with perforated cloth inserts or articulated seats in oxford white leather with perforated leather inserts.
The turbocharged four-cylinder 140 CID engine had fuel injection and 145 horsepower. The overhead-valve V6 had aluminum heads, a 3.8-liter displacement, and delivered 120 horsepower. The 302 cubic-inch V8 brought horsepower to 140. The turbocharged four now came with either an automatic or a five-speed manual gearbox.
The Ford Thunderbird and Mercury Cougar were mechanically identical with slightly different styling.
The Thunderbird had a base price of $2,890. The elan Coupe sold for $12,660 and the Fila for $14,470. The turbocharged coupe had a price of $12,330. A total of 170,533 examples (all Thunderbirds) were produced in 1984.By Daniel Vaughan | May 2019