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Ford Fairmont Sedan Is an Unlikely Dragster, Runs 5-Second 1/8-Mile

Built from 1977 to 1983, the Fairmont is one of Ford's shortest-lived nameplates. It hit the market with a bang, moving 461,000 units in 1978, and it's famous for having debuted the company's Fox platform. Other than that, we could say the Fairmont is a forgettable car. It's also the kind of car you're not likely to see at the drag strip, but someone actually built a dragster out of the compact sedan.
Ford Fairmont dragster 1 photo
And boy, what a cool rig it is. Yeah, it looks pretty beat up with that faded red paint and matte black front hood and trunk lid, but it packs a mean V8 engine under the hood. There's no info as to what lurks behind that boxy grille, but you can rest assured it's not the original V8.

Ford used to offer the Fairmont with a 4.9-liter V8 in its first two years in showrooms. Rated at 139 horsepower, it was later replaced by a 4.2-liter version. Power dropped to 115 horses in 1981, before the V8 was discontinued for good. This beefed-up Fairmont packs a more modern V8 build that runs on a shot of nitrous and produces way more than the typical 1980s performance car.

Fitted with proper drag tires, the Fairmont runs the 1/8-mile impressively fast. There's no official clock to run by, but it looks like it needs fewer than 6 seconds to complete the sprint. Twice! It's definitely the quickest Fairmont I've seen so far.

While four-door sedans are unlikely dragsters, it's not entirely weird to turn a Fairmont into one. This compact is based on the Fox platform, which also underpinned the third-generation Mustang. And these are a common sight at the drag strip nowadays, particularly because the Fox platform is a solid base for the transformation.

Hopefully, someone will turn a Durango into a dragster at some point. And no, I'm not talking about the Dodge Durango; Ford built a Durango too. It was based on the same Fox platform and designed as a successor to the Ranchero. The short-lived coupe utility saw the light of day from 1979 to 1982.

But that's another story for another time. Meanwhile, let's watch this Fairmont rip at the drag strip.

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