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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

Your handy 1979-93 Ford Mustang (Fox-body) buyer's guide | Hagerty Media

Like the Falcon before it, the Ford Fairmont (and the Fox chassis underneath) was the right vehicle for its time. Hailed as the "Best selling new car ever introduced", the Fairmont didn't just lead to the third-generation "Fox-body" Mustang; it created something magical long after its template became obsolete.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/buying-and-selling/1979-93-ford-mustang-fox-body-buyers-guide/
65 REPLIES 65
Sajeev
Community Manager

Sorry for the low resolution, but here's the 1985 brochure showing the 5.0 HO with an automatic had 180hp. This MIGHT have been a mid-cycle upgrade, but I don't know for sure. Thank you for reading my article. 

 

Screen Shot 2021-07-16 at 12.02.28 AM.png

espo70
Intermediate Driver

The 85 5.0 AOD pkg did indeed have 180 hp. It was a running change in early 85. I believe it was due to the freer flowing exhaust system (quasi duals).

Todd_Z
Pit Crew

Excellent article! I don't think I ever knew the Mark VII BMW diesel radiator was sourced for the '93 Cobra. Parts bin raiding at its best.

One correction - you note that the Quadra-Shock option served as a poor man's panhard bar. That isn't correct. The Quadra-Shocks run longitudinally and serve as a poor's man traction bar to help limit axle wrap-up. A panhard bar helps locate the axle laterally.
Sajeev
Community Manager

Oops!  You are 100% right, I will fix that now. 

dhaugh
Intermediate Driver

In 1989 I ordered a 5.0 LX convertible, Red, White Leather and a Black top. When I ran a Marti Report I was surprised to discover it's only 1 of 273 of this combination. I wanted a black top for two reasons, first, white gets dirty too easily and second black looks much better, I think it's the black top with White upholstery that makes it so rare. I chose the LX over the GT for one reason only, those lovely big stainless steel pipes hanging below the rear quarters, an awesome look, I think. I still have the car today and it's covered 29000 miles in its lifetime, I've made sure to take impeccable care of it as it's the only car in my collection that I bought new rather than restored.

That being said, nothing lasts forever. Turns out the rear window motors have a plastic clutch mechanism and the plastic shatters over time, the parts cost me 3 bucks though everything behind the front seats needs to come out to get at the window motors. No big deal really and a good opportunity to clean in the nooks and crannies. Put it all back together and all was well, or so I thought. I then went to replace the door striker on both sides, they're covered with a cylindrical plastic bushing, which like the window motor clutch plastic, had disintegrated. I'd like to get my hands on the engineer who designed this setup, as I unscrewed the striker I heard a clunk and I knew just what it was from, the nut on the back side of the striker was not a kept nut. So, back to unupholstering the rear again, only to find there is no access without removing the convertible top mechanism, obviously not something I had any desire to mess with. Instead I did some arthroscopic surgery with my magnet and retrieved the nut and carefully lowered it into position so I could mate it with the striker bolt. The first crap piece of the design is no kept nut, the second totally crap design was to cover the access to the nut with the convertible top mechanism. Arggggh

All in all though it's a fantastic car with fantastic exhaust notes and it goes sideways when you step on the gas. I think it would be fun to have a hatch back as well since the convertible is less than rigid, but the top goes up and down for fun in the sun.
Numberscruncher
Detailer

Enjoyed reading this one. Can anyone tell me why the Foxes didn't have Mustang Logos anywhere to be seen? It's *supposed to be* a Mustang, after all?
ogSVT
Pit Crew

‘89 - ‘93 had the logo on the dash in front of the passenger, with the ‘93 Cobras being the first Mustang to display the running horse badge in the grill since the ‘70s.
Numberscruncher
Detailer

A logo on the dash is better than nothing, but heck, I'd still like to know who the idiot was that decided to not use a universally recognized logo on the car. Let's face it, the blue ford oval is pretty lame. 

Sajeev
Community Manager

As ogSVT said, the logo came back in 89-93, but it was subtle.  There was also a round, running pony medallion on the hood of the 1979 model, but it was all about suggesting things and not yelling them. 

 

That's because clean, minimalist design was all the rage in the late 1970s, and Ford was on a kick to be more of a threat to its competition by embracing what was popular in Europe. The running horse logo probably wasn't as popular back in the mid 1970s as it is now. 

bobm
Pit Crew

It took awhile, but when the '94s came it, the lack of a pony was easily rectified with a trip to the Ford parts store. Seen here on my '85 LX:
http://vb.foureyedpride.com/album.php?albumid=880&attachmentid=44862
audiobycarmine
Advanced Driver

I know, I know, it’s totally out of context, and abridged too; but this word progression made me laugh. It’s even prophetic:
“Gone was the Mustang II’s sculptural front fascia, and in its place was a wedgy…”

I myself had a ’71 “Sport-Roof” (fastback) that was the longest Mustang made (1971-1973.) Beautiful lines, similar to the Pantera, but poor weight distribution and wet-weather handling.
To me, the Mustang II was a heretical abomination, except when Farah Fawcett was in one.

GREAT, comprehensive article though. Another keeper.
Billthecat707
Detailer

Another great article Sajeev. Really touched a warm spot for me. Special ordered an '88 LX hatch 5.0 5spd 3.08 rear gear. AC and radio delete. (I lived in New England , didn't want the extra weight.) Dark blue with blue interior. Only options cruise control, rear defrost, and red molding accent stripe. Sold after accumulating too many points on my license. Fast forward 10 years, I bought an '89 medium blue LX hatch while living in Seattle, kept it 20 years modified almost everything, and passed it on to my son-in-law when I bought a Hellcat. I can testify to how scary the Gator acts and mediocre brakes were in the snow.
M81
New Driver

Great article thank you! As a former 86 Capri 5.0 GS, former 85 LTD SSP (lx like) and current M81 McLaren Mustang owner the Fox Platform is what helped start my lifelong automotive passion. These were new cars when I was coming of age and I spent many hours oogling them in showrooms and out on the racetrack. A few friends owned them in high school and the power to weight ratio and slideways capacity was something to experience! Seeing a CHP Mustang in your rear was a heart stopping moment! Someday I hope to own an 86 Saleen coupe or TTop hatch. I kick myself for not picking one up when you could get pampered low mileage cars for under $15k a few years ago.
ogSVT
Pit Crew

Literally lol’d at the description of the ‘93 Cobras performance as it “wasn’t impressive on paper.” Interesting how when then Ford Motorsport (now Ford Performance) sold the GT-40 engine upgrade package for GT/LX 5.0s in its catalog it was rated at 270hp…but when installed on a production car (‘93 Cobra) it was only good for 235hp. 🤔

Underrated power figures didn’t stop in the ‘60s.
espo70
Intermediate Driver

@Sajeev
The Quadra shock rear suspension arrangement actually debuted on the mid year 84 GT not the 86.
Sajeev
Community Manager

Oops! I am rewriting the 1984 section to reflect this truth. Thank you!