It turns out that the awesome I wanted to talk about was my Dad’s 1991 Ford Thunderbird SC, which stands for Super Coupe, or Super Charger, depending on who you ask.
It was black, just like in the picture to the left. It was a two-door beast, wide, low and fast, and by the standards of American cars of those years, a luxury sport coupe with no rivals. It featured a trusty Ford V6 with a low-boost supercharger, which gave it 210 horsepower and a massive 330 pound-feet of torque. From a small V6, that’s enormous even by today’s standards. It was all that and more. It’s really tough to describe. To say that this car was epic would be an understatement. It was roomy, comfortable with enveloping bucket seats, and still managed to make you feel like you were driving a go-kart with your butt 2 inches from the ground.
Our windows were illegally tinted, very dark, and it looked extremely bad-ass. It wore 225 tires, which are relatively wide and were somewhat uncommon back in 1991. This car was also particularly fast. The top-end was impressive, at least in the magazines, as it had an advertised top speed of 150 mph (which I never tested), but what was really cool was the acceleration. The numbers for that weren’t that impressive. Maybe 7 seconds for the 0-60, or something like that. It’s not important. What counts is how it made you feel: it was all about the torque, and the feeling of those two tons of steel pushing you in the back, unrelentingly, is indescribable. Awesome.
I drove this car for a LONG time, and I remember getting excited driving it, every single time. Of course, it also had its drawbacks, mostly associated with driving in the winter. Even with decent snow tires, it was terrible. Because of the limited slip differential, you could literally get stuck on a patch of ice as big as a postcard, if you weren’t careful. I honestly can’t count the number of times I’ve have to push that car. The Thunderbird SC was also low. Very low. This means that driving through snow and anything over 4-5 inches was a big no-no, unless you fancied pushing. See above.
All told, the 1991 Ford Thunderbird SC was a great car, and I miss it every time I see one on the street, which is increasingly rare.