This car was actually the first Ford to use the Fox platform, which they would continue to reuse and recycle until 2004. The Thunderbird, Granada, Lincoln Continental, and Mustang all ended up using this platform at some point in their life cycles. With conventional rear wheel drive, the Fairmont was actually a big success for Ford. It broke the company record for a new car, previously held by the 1965 Mustang. The engine options ranged from a 4 cylinder all the way up to a 302 cubic inch V8. As the Granada came along in 1981, the Fairmont was downsized in the Ford lineup to more of an entry level economy car, which fit in line with many cars from other companies during that era. The Futura coupe and the 4 door sedan lasted until 1983, when the nameplate was finally retired.
You can still find these cars on used car classifieds, and there are plenty of owners out there to share useful information on such topics as repairs. You can also find these cars listed on eBay for a deeply discounted price.