THE CAR AND ITS OWNER
1969 Ford Maverick owned by John Frohnhoefer
WHAT MAKES IT INTERESTING
As Japanese car brands began to make inroads in the U.S. during the late ‘60s, American manufacturers were feeling the pressure. Ford responded in 1969 with the Maverick, an economical, sporty coupe that became the first car for many a Long Island baby boomer. These “compacts” were fairly spartan, bearing little resemblance to the luxurious, technology-laden small cars sold today.
The standard engine was a 170-cubic-inch straight-six putting out 105 horsepower. Although most were junked or rusted away over the years, Frohnhoefer’s 26,000-mile ride is a rare, well-preserved original. “This is the 83rd Maverick ever made,” he says. “It sold new for $1,995. The car has no radio, air conditioning or glove compartment. The first Mavericks had the ignition on the dashboard and were considered 1969-1/2 models, which are very rare. All others had the ignition on the (steering) column. Not many are on the road today.”
HOW LONG HE’S OWNED IT
WHERE HE FOUND IT
Frohnhoefer found it through an online auction site, where it was advertised by an upstate New York owner. “The car was in a garage in Connecticut for 20 years,” he says.
“It has no rust, is straight, has the original paint job and is in great shape,” he says. “The car drives fantastic and I have no restoration plans. Everyone who looks at it suggests keeping it as a survivor. The car is garaged and only goes out to shows and cruise nights. It’s a real head-turner and brings back memories to many.”
TIPS FOR OWNERS
“Forty-three-year-old cars have parts that are sometimes hard to find,” Frohnhoefer notes.
He says the Ford is worth $10,000.
THE BOTTOM LINE
“I had a 1970 Maverick ‘hot rod’ back in the ‘70s,” he says, “but a six-cylinder is fine and fun to drive.”