Today is the anniversary of that last MN12 Tbird rolling off the assembly line in Lorain Ohio.
The volumes were respectable for what they were(MN12 Tbirds did outsell the Monte Carlo to their end) but your second point is definitely what did them in, but right from the start. These cost way way more to build than the Fox cars did and I suspect that if Ford had gone the way the Mustang did (by updating the Fox to make the SN95), the 5 seater Thunderbird would have stuck around a few more years. It's no surprise the Explorer's success was so well embraced after the MN12 fiasco really -- The humbly underpinned Turbo coupe got all that acclaim for being a budget BMW, and when Ford actually made a legitimate budget BMW with the MN12, no one wanted it(no one new anyway). Where were the new buyers? In the Explorer! An ancient Bronco II with two extra doors.... ingrates :tongue:The MN12 was never a particularly high volume or high profit platform for Ford, which when compared to the margins from the emerging SUV market at the time, is why it was killed off.