Recommendations For Mustang Purchase

Discussion in '1979 - 1995 (Fox, SN95.0, & 2.3L) -General/Talk-' started by Audiophile, Sep 12, 2013.

  1. To all,

    First, I'm new to this forum. I certainly hope I'm posting in the right place, don't want to cause any issues.

    I've been doing a lot of reading and am looking for some advice from those that have experience.

    I'm currently in the market for a Foxbody Mustang. I'm of course looking for the 5.0 engine, no 4 cyl., sorry. :) Several questions come to mind. Should I pay the extra money that a Cobra seems to command? I mean, the ole water cooler talk about a Cobra is cool and all, but is it worth it? Is it necessarily a bad thing to purchase something that has had work done to the engine? Are there specific upgrades that may have been done that I should stay away from? Are there general engine upgrades that are relatively safe, no matter who has done the work?

    I realize these are general questions and answers will vary. I'm not a complete car idiot, but always know that there is usually someone around the corner that knows more than me, and if I can tap into that knowledge, I try to do so.

    My goals for my car will be a nice, quality, daily driver performer. I'm not planning on going to the strip. However, I love torque and if I can afford it, would love to build a street sleeper. I have no interest in going down the road at 120mph, just not my thing.

    I welcome and appreciate any help and advice anyone chooses to offer. I've owned one other Mustang, a '94 5.0 and didn't make the best decision. The car had been worked on, but I'm not so sure the person doing the work knew what they were doing exactly. And, I know for sure the car was never tuned properly, it just didn't run right. I'm hoping to prevent that type of mistake this time around.

    Thanks very much in advance to all. Kind Regards, Chris
  2. Welcome aboard, you're in good company! As far as a Cobra, if your not looking for an original car with some collector value, not worth the premium in my opinion.

    What's your budget?
  3. YES another torque moster!!! Get a stick for the streets!!! :spot:
  4. Thanks so much for your response. Yeah, I usually work on my cars and always change stuff, so I'm not sure an original car for collecting is something I should seek. I just didn't know if there was that big of a performance advantage. From what I've read, doesn't really seem that way.

    As far as budget, I can go as high as $15K or so to start. However, if I can maximize my dollars and keep the purchase price down around the $10K mark, it will leave me a little to work on it and change a few things. :) I will of course, be able to invest some here and there as I go aside from the original budget.
  5. Welcome aboard, you're in good company! As far as a Cobra, if your not looking for an original car with some collector value, not worth the premium in my opinion.

    What's your budget?
  6. Yes, I think I get that from my dad.

    Very nice looking ride there. Dang, in ATL? I just moved from there after 15 years to CA!! And I thought ATL emissions sucked!!! :)
    Grabbin' Asphalt likes this.
  7. Not much difference between the Fox Cobra and a Fox 5.0. That kind of budget, you could go quite a bit newer, which would be better for a daily driver. The 89-93's do take to modifications better than the newer ones, and they are much lighter, which is a big plus. 5 speeds are much quicker than autos. Pretty much all modifications can be screwed up by the installer, but some are safer than others, such as exhaust, throttle bodies, and MA sensors. Take your time looking, and I'd recommend a compression check at a minimum.
  8. Thank you very much for your reply. I really appreciate your recommendations. I'm hoping all this info I can gather will help me make an informed decision!!
  9. Just checking back in to see if anyone else had any thoughts or suggestions. If so, please feel free to chime in, much appreciated!!
  10. You can't really go wrong with any 5.0 Mustang. However, there are times when one choice might be favored over another.

    Convertibles - Unless you just have to have open air motoring, I would stay away from these. They are even flimsier than the hard top versions, the tops almost always leak, and as far as I can tell are generally worth less when it comes to resale. On the flipside, the buy in is cheaper.

    Now, some people just have to have the top down... but if that is the case, then i would go at least new edge if not S197.

    Hatchbacks - LX and GT - I personally like hatchbacks, and think that they are sportier looking than the Notch, plus have a lot of cargo room if you need to haul something. Resale isn't as good as the notch for an average car, but nice cars still bring a good dollar amount. Great for cruising, but give up a little bit to the Notch in the racing environment due to slightly higher weight and less chassis stiffness.

    I personally love the GT body style with the air dam, but really you just have to go with which one you like the best. Performance between LX and GT is pretty much the same.

    Notchbacks - Notches are part of the Fox Body Legend. Although they only sport about a 50 lb. savings over a similarly equipped LX hatch, the lore is that they are 500 lbs lighter and run 13's stock. This isn't really true, but they do have some slight advantages in weight and chassis stiffness. Most importantly, a clean notch demands a premium over a similar hatch or convertible.

    93 Cobra - Here's the deal. '93 Cobras are worth a lot in clean stock condition with low mileage. Rough 93 Cobras can be had for slightly more than a clean LX or GT. If you plan to modify a Cobra, then you either need to pick a rough one or expect a big depreciation hit if you choose to sell your lower mileage but modified Cobra. You can get away with small stuff like springs and exhaust, but internal engine work, rear end swaps, forced induction, etc. is not desired on a sub 100K Cobra.

    If you want to do serious modifications, then you will see no benefit starting with a Cobra because every part and piece on the Cobra has been surpassed in quality and performance by the aftermarket. At this point, you might as well start with a clean LX or GT and change as much as you'd like.

    Last thing: Fox Mustangs are d*ck magnets. Every dude you see will be watching you and trying to strike up a conversation. It's worse with a Cobra. Good luck!
    Noobz347 likes this.
  11. With a budget of 15k you should be able to find a really nice car with low miles for roughly 7-10k and have plenty left over for any modifications-repairs. Cobras are basically collector cars IMO. I'd buy a stick car a million times over before an auto with your goals in mind. Slap some bolt ons and wheels/tires,brakes/suspension and enjoy! Good luck!
  12. Thnx man, sux about your emissions. My family resides in non-emission county, yay for me!!! BTW can be VERY picky about a mustang with that budget. Go to and get a feel what that can get you. Some will be way over priced but at least you'll have a solid idea of what you'll be close too. $8000 would get you a real nice one and you could save money or mod a little :flag:
  13. Yeah like the rest are saying; if ya wanna go fast or moderately fast get a $5k lx or gt and put ten k into it. $3k in parts will get you keeping up w a new v6
  14. To everyone above, thanks so much for your replies! It means a lot to me. And, I'm happy to see that most of you are basically recommending very close to the same thing. That is going to make me rest a lot easier when its time to make a decision this time around.

    I will make sure to update the forum with some pics and details as soon as I get there! Thanks again!!!!
  15. Or try and race you in the street.
  16. Yeah just hope you're packin' more than an off road x and 3.73s
  17. Usually, I just shake my head at them. If I had a nickel for every idiot... :nonono:
  18. I usually just give it a quick rev to acknowledge there envy and keep about my way
  19. What's the most common cars that wants to race?
  20. anything with a Folgers muffler
    Grabbin' Asphalt and Noobz347 like this.