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Tom1200
Tom1200 PowerDork
4/12/24 11:29 p.m.

I've spent the last 35 years racing the Datsun as well as single seat race cars so people were a bit surprised when I bought a 1990 LX Mustang. One long time friend even commented that folks better start stocking up on can goods and ammo as surely the apocalypse is nigh.

The reasons were rather simple and rather logical; granted I've never been known for my logic. This isn't my first encounter with Foxbody Mustangs. Back in 1984 a friends cousin worked for a local Ford dealer and we ended up be enlisted to drive cars back from a show to the dealership. The sales manager took one look at me, skinny grunge rock looking kid and told me to take the Mustang. I assume he figured I didn't fit the mainstream mode so I likely wasn't going to do it any harm. 

On the drive over to the dealership I reveled in the hooligan fun the car was to drive. By this point I'd already driven the nirvana that was a 911 but the Mustang made an impression. Naturally that impression was akin to doing donuts in a muddy field but there was a problem. At the time a Mustang was just to mainstream and I've always been to counter culture and so I never intended to by one.

Flash forward 30 years and air cooled 911s are far to much money for an innately thrifty soul such as myself and the Foxbody is no longer the flash car it once was.

If I am honest I have to admit that I like front engine rear drive cars that you have to make work to go fast in them. I'd considered stuffing a small block in the Datsun but finally came to the conclusion that getting a relatively light V8 car would be the easy button.

Besides the hooligan factor, the parts availability and tech support made the car a no brainer. The latter two factors are probably 75% of the reason I bought the car. Parts for the Mustang are now significantly cheaper than Datsun performance parts.

I am keenly aware that I likely won't be turning faster lap times than I would in a Spec Miata but this car is going to be about the experience and not the lap time. I've driven numerous V8 powered cars, including some Foxbody Mustangs, on track but this will be the first one that is mine and I am looking forward to running it.

 

Datsun240ZGuy
Datsun240ZGuy MegaDork
4/12/24 11:49 p.m.

Good decision- I like your logic.  As you know I'm a big Datsun fan but I hate the rarity and prices of the Datsun parts.  Bumpers or fenders for a 510 or 240Z?  Forget about it.  

You'll love the prices and availability of those Mustang parts - used stuff on Craigslist too.  

P3PPY
P3PPY GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
4/12/24 11:58 p.m.

Which one did you get? Pics? 

Tom1200
Tom1200 PowerDork
4/13/24 12:09 a.m.

In reply to P3PPY :

Fresh from the garage.

P3PPY
P3PPY GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
4/13/24 12:12 a.m.

In reply to Tom1200 :

That's HOT!

Looks post-refresh?

Tom1200
Tom1200 PowerDork
4/13/24 12:13 a.m.

In reply to Datsun240ZGuy :

The price for cylinder heads for my 1200 is crazy and I can no longer get the clutch places for the limited slip.

I am starting to get race parts from Japan.

By contrast there are 5 places to get Foxbody parts and I can get any part I want.

RacingComputers
RacingComputers GRM+ Memberand Reader
4/13/24 12:14 a.m.

Good Logic

 

Suggestion

 

Add as much frame stiffening as your wallet can stand.

 

Maybe a 6 point Roll Cage too boot.

 

The enjoy

 

Got our first Fox body in 1984.  SVO Comp Delete.

 

Not a V8, but had more HP at the time than a rel V8

 

Enjoy

Tom1200
Tom1200 PowerDork
4/13/24 12:24 a.m.

In reply to RacingComputers :

I will be adding the Cobra brake kit and the chassis stiffeners over the summer.

I will also be cleaning up a few things but overall it's pretty damn good.

The motor has some minor mods and is probably around the 235-240hp range. The goal is a modest 275-300hp.

Tom1200
Tom1200 PowerDork
4/13/24 12:26 a.m.

In reply to P3PPY :

All orignal; it was parked in a warehouse for 10 years. It only has 73,000 miles on it.

Feedyurhed
Feedyurhed UltraDork
4/13/24 6:29 a.m.
Tom1200 said:

In reply to P3PPY :

Fresh from the garage.

That is so beautiful Tom.  It's just about perfect the way it is. A 5.0, LX notch back........one of the all time great looks.

Cooper_Tired
Cooper_Tired Dork
4/13/24 6:42 a.m.

In reply to Feedyurhed :

Not a notch back, but agree, it's perfect 

Feedyurhed
Feedyurhed UltraDork
4/13/24 8:04 a.m.
Cooper_Tired said:

In reply to Feedyurhed :

Not a notch back, but agree, it's perfect 

Ha.....clearly. I was starstruck.    

ddavidv
ddavidv UltimaDork
4/13/24 8:08 a.m.

Two words:  Maximum Motorsports

I instructed a student in a Fox Mustang one weekend. Trust me; it can be faster than a Miata around a road course. laugh

Floating Doc (Forum Supporter)
Floating Doc (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
4/13/24 8:39 a.m.
ddavidv said:

Two words:  Maximum Motorsports

I instructed a student in a Fox Mustang one weekend. Trust me; it can be faster than a Miata around a road course. laugh

Good advice 

11GTCS
11GTCS SuperDork
4/13/24 8:53 a.m.

Sounds better than a spec Miata too...laugh   

Plus one on frame stiffening and suspension upgrades.  Very nice car you got there.  A ton of support for Fox body cars.  Use to be able to pick them at reasonable prices, not any more.  Following to see where you go with this, good luck.

rustybugkiller
rustybugkiller Dork
4/13/24 9:43 a.m.

The wheels are perfect!

SEADave
SEADave Dork
4/13/24 10:13 a.m.

You don't have to justify buying a foxbody Mustang, they are iconic cars.  Even as much as they have gone up in value already I don't think they will ever be as cheap as they are today.  I'm with you on the parts situation, although if you can find a multi-function stalk switch that works for more than a year for less than $100 I would love to hear about it.   

Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter)
Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
4/13/24 10:16 a.m.

Just lovely. I've owned two, and there was a time from the late 90s to the mid-2000s when there were 5-6 of us in my friend group that had them and modified the hell out of them.

FWIW, you probably know this, but that car already has a 5-lug conversion, hence the Bullitt wheels. There were a lot of ways to do that, from cobbling together SVO, Ranger and Mark VII parts, to swapping out the spindles and axles from an SN95 GT (which is what I did on mine), to the whole shebang Cobra conversion that you're talking about. Do you know what you have right now?

Agreed on Maximum Motorsports, they got a lot of my money over the years. The factory rear suspension on these cars is an absolute compromised mess, and I never had the money to fix it right, but if you can ditch the UCAs and put a proper panhard bar and torque arm on it, the improvement is massive. But I had plenty of fun with Koni Reds and Ford "C" springs with CC plates and some stiffer bushings. I never touched the sway bars.

For engine mods, the world is your oyster. It's a small block Ford, go nuts. The cheap way to go back when I was messing with mine was the GT-40P setup from the mid-90s Explorer with the 5.0. Cheap, better-breathing heads and a very good intake. A step up would be the various aluminum heads that flow better and take about 50 pounds off the nose of the car.

I will always have a place in my heart for Fox bodies, though if I ever go back to them, it'll be an earlier 4-eye model, but they are a very cool, if deeply flawed platform.

Tom1200
Tom1200 PowerDork
4/13/24 1:31 p.m.

In reply to ddavidv :

Already talked to them; I will be sending them all the specs on the suspension so they can do their recommendations.........they charge a whopping $50 for the service.

ShawnG
ShawnG MegaDork
4/13/24 2:17 p.m.

Theres a lot to be said for a project car that is well supported. 

I've wrenched on a ton of cool pre-war cars and I love Packards but...

My project ia a '28 Model A Ford because you can buy almost the whole thing out of a catalog. 

Tom1200
Tom1200 PowerDork
4/13/24 2:40 p.m.

In reply to SEADave :

We paid $7500 for the car, which given all the parts already on it, is more than fair.

tester (Forum Supporter)
tester (Forum Supporter) HalfDork
4/13/24 2:58 p.m.

A Fox might not be the fastest way around a road course, but it will be fun! 
 

It's fast enough to feel like you're doing something and old school enough to make you "work". 

ShawnG
ShawnG MegaDork
4/13/24 3:07 p.m.

Good, solid tech too. Ford had that engine perfect by then. No surprises. 

Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter)
Tom_Spangler (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
4/13/24 5:09 p.m.
Tom1200 said:

In reply to SEADave :

We paid $7500 for the car, which given all the parts already on it, is more than fair.

Mods or not, $7500 for a 5.0 Fox with a clean body in 2024 is a very good price. Well done.

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