Where do Fox Body Stangs Rank.....?

Discussion in '1965 - 1973 Classic Mustangs -General/Talk-' started by MustangNovice, Aug 24, 2011.


  1. MustangNovice

    MustangNovice New Member

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    So, I have owned a few Mustangs over the past four years. I had a 2005 GT Convertible that I sold. Recently purchased a 2001 GT Convertible that was truly beautiful, 32k miles, but was an automatic and I really wanted a standard. I recently traded that car for a 1988 GT convertible with 74k original miles with ZERO rust...

    So my question is, in the lineage of Mustang history, where does the Fox Body Mustang fall? Is this body style a style that is considered a popular and/or desirable? I ask, as I am trying to determine if this is the right Mustang to make an investment in from a collectors car standpoint. The overall body is excellent, but I am thinking of doing a restore on the interior and exterior color (paint)...

    I appreciate everyone's opinion and feedback on the topic. I know opinions on the desirability or popularity of a car is subjective, but I would like to better understand where the Fox Body style lands in terms of Mustand Muscle Car History...

    Thank you..
     
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  2. Gearbanger 101

    Gearbanger 101 Straight Outta Locash
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    From a collectors standpoint....skip it. The Fox was probably the most produced Mustang chassis ever built. It has the least in common (from a styling perspective) with any other Mustang ever designed and the most popular drive train installed into a car. So from a rarity standpoint, they're nothing special.

    My advice to you would be to just drive the thing. You're never going to get any serious money for it, so the only way it ever going to be worth anything to you, is from a pure drivers perspective. Tinker with it, modify it, customize it and enjoy it. :nice:
     
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  3. Penguin

    Penguin Active Member

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    I have to agree with Gearbanger.

    Unless the Fox is a '93 Cobra, '93 Cobra R, Saleen, Mclaren, '84-86 SVO or some other specialty model I might have missed; I would just enjoy the ride.
     
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  4. Realmongo

    Realmongo I prefer to be called "Evil Genius"
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  5. Noobz347

    Noobz347 Stangnet Facilities Maint Tech... Er... Janitor
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    Heh,

    Probably the only exception to that rule is having a collection of these things. There was a story some time ago about a guy who had an 83, and 86, and a 93. He bought them in various states of mod and repair and went about restoring them to near stock form. Sold the lot of em for more than he had into them. Proabably just as much about being at the right place at the right time.
     
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  6. MustangNovice

    MustangNovice New Member

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    Brian,

    It is feedback like that makes me appreciate this website. Thank you. Your reply, and the others who have replied to this thread, have confirmed what I had been thinking, that this car, although in great shape, low mileage and excellent condition, would likely never be a car that drew lots of value as a rare, unique and desirable Mustang. Not that owning a collectors car is my retirement plan, rather owning a car that one is going to invest a lot of time and money into should hold the future potential for drawing interest and demand when looking to sell the car. I had my doubts that this car would draw that type of interest or provide that type of return, so I appreciate the insight and feedback from all responding to this thread.

    That being said, to take Brian's feedback, the car does have some strong points that make keeping the car of interest to me. First, I own it without having invested a dime. When I traded my 01 GT Vert for this car, the cash I got back in the trade actually exceeded what I had paid for the 01, so the 88 was essentially a throw in. I took it as part of the trade because it was 5 sp (01 was an automatic), with the 302, low miles in excellent condition. So I thought I had little to lose and if I wanted to do a complete restore, I had a solid foundation to work from, ie strong motor and drive train, as well as a rust free body with a new top. My restore would include taking the interior back to its original style, ie new door panels, new red leather seats (carpet is excellent) and several interior accessory replacements, ie knobs, emblems, shift knob and radio, and a reconditioning of the exterior, ie changing the color to a solid black with a red trim stripe, red lettering on the ground effects kit that came on the GT, 5.0 emblems with the red trim on them and new Ford emblems. I am guessing the entire restore would run me between $5k and $8k, but I would have one mint and sharp Mustang to drive.

    So here is the challenge/question. Right now, I could probably get between $5k and $6k in selling the car as is, which would be pure profit/cash for me in my pocket. If I make the investments outlined above, its likely I won't be able to get more than maybe $10k for the car in sale. Maybe, maybe not. My plan would be drive it for a couple of summers in Maine, as I don't believe cars like this belong on the road in a Maine winter... I am not cashed strapped in any way, and can afford to make the investment, I just wonder in the eyes of Mustang knowledgeable people whether or not making such an investment is a good, worthwhile, idea or should I take the cash now and go look for a more unique and desirable Mustang to purchase?

    Thanks to all for your input and feedback on this topic/question.

    Sincerely,

    Nick
     
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  7. StangDreamin'

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    one thing to remember is the time-tested "It's YOUR Car" maxim, especially in this case. You have basically NOTHING invested in this car at this time; yet you mentioned that you don't want it on the road in winter. Tells me you have a personal investment already.

    On a couple of my 'regular' boards, people are looking at the economy and at the automotive sales out there; and wondering out loud "What's a good investment car?" I cannot believe that this is a serious question that can be given a thought-out researched answer. When a C5 Corvette can out-price a factory FE side-oiler 427-powered ANYTHING; I'd say there is no history or logic involved in the pricing factors. You want solid investment advice? Go with precious metals! As for automotive purchases, go with what YOU like; and to H3ll with "the market".

    One thing to consider: No matter what anybody says about the Fox platform (and personally, they leave me cold); it truly was the re-emergence of the Mustang as a Ponycar/Musclecar. If it weren't for the driving enthusiasts' (and thier wallets') response to the '93 Cobra, the S351, and the turbo SVO; Mustang lovers would be driving re-badged Ford Probes. The Mustang II brought back the image of the 1964-1/2 "Secretary's Car"; the Fox brought back the Pony Car.

    Taken another way... On one of these threads, somebody mentioned an '87 Grand National as a "good investment". Hot car, could be scary hot with the right guy turning wrenches; but let's look at the big picture.... it's a tighter suspension package and a turbocharger on a late-80's Buick Regal! Really? THAT'S a musclecar??? Give me a T-bolt or a 427 tri-power 60-something Galaxie any day!

    Who knows what's going to be the next "hot-ticket" musclecar? I'm still out here hoping that the VERY LAST YEAR of the U.S.-manufactured Falcon-based Ford "pony-cars" will have some draw; but, if not, I'll STILL have a car with the same "nice when de-smogged" power-train as I had in my first car, which was already not Falcon/Fairlane-based. And it won't even be a Mustang, but rather a Cougar. I've already re-bought what parts I didn't save off the Gran Torino; so right now it's just a matter of that most-precious commodity, time.

    And, when it's done; I'll enjoy it. And if somebody else likes it, they can buy it from my kids/grandkids after I'm dead. Meanwhile, Imagonna drive the p*ss out of it; because it's mine and I can.

    Some things you just can't buy at any amount.
     
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  8. zookeeper

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    If you don't like Fox-bodied Mustangs, quit reading right now because this is not your post. I finished my dream car a few years back, the '67 GT350 clone in my sig. I love the way the car looks, it's fun to drive and I'm really proud of the car as a whole. But you know what? It's not nearly as much fun to drive as my '88 GT. The '88 handles wonderfully, goes pretty fast (not as fast as the old one) and believe it or not, the '88 gets more compliments! I took the car to the SF bay area a few weeks ago, and one of the locals in a lowered Fox 'vert followed me down El Camino Real for nearly 3 miles to get a better look at the '88! At the motel, I went out to the pool and several younger guys were checking it out then as well! Just a couple hours ago, while at the McDonald's drive-thru, some 19 year old girl leaned out the window and told me, "now THAT's a badass car!" It's like that all the time, and don't for a second think it's because it's a show-stopper car. The thing is clean, but it was painted in '93 and up close it looks it's age. But it just looks "right". The only thing I seem to hear about my GT350 clone is "how much is that worth?" I'm sick of that to the point that I've driven it exactly twice in the past year. It's so bad that if I'm ready to sell it. I didn't build the thing because I thought it was a good investment, I built it because I thought it would make a neat hot rod Mustang. But the more I drive the '88 the more I fantasize about blowers, different gears, new paint better suspension and so on. Fox bodied Mustangs truly are the hot rod Mustangs these days.
     
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  9. MustangNovice

    MustangNovice New Member

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    Zookeeper,

    I have experienced the very same thing since I picked up the 88 GT Vert two weeks ago. It is far from perrfect, ie paints faded, interior is so so, but for some reason the look of the car just appeals to me and others who see it. I cannot help but think its smaller body style gives it a more appealing curb appeal that the bigger, longer, cars of that generation. But I understand what you are saying and what others have said in this thread, it is about what appeals to me and whether or not I enjoy driving this car.

    That being said, I took the car to a reputable muscle car mechanic and had him go through it stem to stern. He came back and told me that the care was immaculate underneath and has obviously been well cared for. With only 74k miles on the 302 V8, he said this motor has plenty more to give and will last a long long time. His advice was, this car has a great/solid foundation if you want to start "investing" in modifying the car. A pretty ringing endorsement for a car of this year.

    So, I am keeping the car. I am going to have the car painted solid black, with red trim stripe all the way around the car. I am going to have all the emblems and badges replaced with new badges and I am going to have the painter fill in the Mustang lettering inserts on the bumper and GT ground effects in red paint to contrast the black. In addition, I am going to have the interior changed to the original seat style in red leather, front and back, and have the door panels replaced with red panels as well. Lastly, I am going to install a lowering kit, new suspension, re-enforcement bars for structural integrity and a few aftermarket modifications to the engine (CAI, TB and Plenum). Already had fastback exhaust installed.

    When I am all done, I believe I will have a super sharp car that is fun to drive and will definitely turn heads. All in, I will probably have $8k of my own money in the car, which is pretty inexpensive when you think about what I will have when I am all done with the modifications.

    Thanks to all for the advice and feedback. Much appreciated. I will post pictures when I am done.
     
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  10. MustangNovice

    MustangNovice New Member

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    I agree, value and investment are two different things. I hear you loud and clear in that a car is not a good investment, but that speaks nothing to the value a car holds to its owner or others who may see it or want it. I have found myself truly amazed at the history, or should I say legacy, of the Mustang in american muscle car lore. The significance of the car can been seen in all the companies that provide/sell Mustang supplies and parts for Mustangs of all years, going all the way back to the 60s and 70s. Clearly there is a business/demand for supporting the effort to keep older Mustangs on the road and to me, that says a lot about the car's place in muscle car history, regardless of body style.

    I appreciate the candid and direct feedback. You are right, one should not think of a car such as the one I have as an investment, rather is this something that has value to me in a way that will return enjoyment when done and put on the road to drive during Maine summer and fall seasons. I think the answer is yes, it will does...

    Sincerely,

    Nick
     
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  11. MustangNovice

    MustangNovice New Member

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    I meant to ask, based on experience of those on this site, does anyone have recommendations on the best place to go to get Fox Body Mustang seats, carpets, door trim and convertible boots for the top?

    Thanks,

    Nick
     
    #11
  12. Bryan83taco

    Bryan83taco Active Member

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    Check out TMI products for replacement seat leather, vinyl, etc. Latemodel Restoration Supply, American Muscle, Fox Mustang Restoration are good places to start looking.
     
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  13. jlangholzj

    jlangholzj Advanced Member

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    just to throw in my $0.01 (since I'm not worth $0.02 :rlaugh: )

    I've got a 68 coupe that's rust free, 289 automatic car. Nothing special, but its a fun driver. Paint it about a 20 footer, but so far I've got

    intake/carb/cam/exhaust
    alum rad/e-fan
    AOD

    next on the list (the longer one LOL)
    3.73 gears
    wider rear tires
    shelby drop/lower car
    new rear leafs
    granada swap
    suspension upgrade all around
    67 shelby grille
    AOD rebuild (the current one is kinda marginal, i did it myself :p )
    aluminum driveshaft

    AND eventually, 331 stroker

    I'm going to build this thing how I want it, and although it won't be worth nearly as much as others in the end, I'm keeping all the original parts and not doing any major cutting/hacking and at any point could be resotred back to the stock form if someone wanted to.

    should be a damn fun car when its all done, considering how much i love it now!
     
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  14. bikefreak600

    bikefreak600 Member

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    mint low mile stock condition fox bodies prices have been slowly raising over the past several years. even know there have been tons of these made, there cant be a whole lot of stock low mile cars left.
    i have thought about restoring one myself to stock form, cheap and who knows in 20 yrs they might be worth something. for $5 g's its worth the risk. stock parts for these things are practically free :nice:
     
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  15. bikefreak600

    bikefreak600 Member

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    plus look at how many 65-66 stangs found the road and look at them now
     
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  16. Gearbanger 101

    Gearbanger 101 Straight Outta Locash
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    That statement kind of works against the whole "rarity" claim, don't you think? It's hard to claim they might be worth a pretty penny one day based on their deminishing ranks, when people can't even give thier parts away in most cases. :D
    They were the originals. The first of the breed Even **** box cars will bring in huge money if they’re the first ones off the line. Look at the Ford Edsel? :shrug:

    Also remember. The Fox Mustang was built during one of the lowest points in automotive history. The 80's churned out more mass produced **** box's than any other era. Not exactly a time when cars were "built with pride". Not like they were during the 60's.
     
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  17. zookeeper

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    Very true. When these things were new-ish (mid-late '90's) they were very common and very cheap. Like any car, once they become cheap enough for high school kids, their numbers drop off in a hurry. I vividly remember salvage yards with lots of wadded-up Foxes for parts back then, just like 20 years earlier when '65-'68 Mustangs were just old cars, nothing more. The price for used 5.0 Mustangs hasn't really taken off, but they are getting more valuable by the day, because they guys who wanted one when they were in high school in the late '80's and early '90's are now in their '40's and now have the money to buy one, modify and/or restore it however they like. The things are also cheap enough for the 20-something car guys and the aftermarket is huge and the amount of used parts is both huge and cheap, so the cars that are left are gaining more value. Just a couple years ago, my wife and I got into a huge argument when she wanted to turn our '88 T-Top GT (one of 251 made that year) in on the "Cash For Clunkers" program. The dealer/government offered her $3500 which was more than the car was worth at the time, but I just couldn't see taking care of the thing for all those years (since '91) just to turn it in to be parted out and scrapped. But it's paid off, because now, just a couple years later, I have been offered much more than that by a local who knows how hard clean Fox-bodied Mustangs are getting to find. BTW, here's a pic I took a few months ago of what my wife wanted to let get crushed.


    [​IMG]
     
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  18. Gearbanger 101

    Gearbanger 101 Straight Outta Locash
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    So how does your new wife feel about the car? :D
     
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  19. aar0s

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    Just put a TMI leather seat kit in my car and could not be happier with it. when you do the carpet get the mass backed stuff, TMI also does convertible boots, im fixin to buy one later in the fall.

    And as far as parts being cheep, ive been watching some of the electrical parts rise over the past few years. The last LMR catalog had the 87-89 multi switch at damn near 300 bucks, a couple (2 or 3) years ago you could find them all day for about 100 - 125.
     
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  20. zookeeper

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    If she tries taking one more of my Mustangs to the crusher, she's gonna be the EX-wife!
     
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