Here’S Why The Ford Fox-Body Mustang Still Attracts Classic Car Fans
As the second generation 1974-78 Mustang II was failing, Ford ushered in the Fox-body era for the 1979 model year hoping that the Mustang would reclaim its title as one of the best-selling muscle cars. Lasting from 1979 to 1993, the Fox-body Mustangs were the third generation of Ford’s iconic muscle car nameplate.
Riding on the new Fox platform, it became one of Ford’s longest-running generations. This redesign worked for Ford as the Fox-body Mustang sold 369,936 units in its very first year on the market in 1979, raising hopes for the Detroit automaker after the sluggish malaise era years.
Today, the Fox-body Mustangs are a dream muscle car for many performance-hungry car enthusiasts, given that while they began life as relatively less-powered muscle cars, they soon picked up plenty of performance cred. Here’s what you need to know about the Fox-body Mustang to see if it makes your list of an ideal, muscle car classic.
The Mustang Fox-Body Is An Affordable Classic Muscle Car
Despite the popularity of the Mustang during the ‘60s horsepower wars, the oil crisis soon saw sales waning. Since the public demanded lighter cars with way more fuel economy than the ‘Stang, Jack Telnack, the vice president of design for Ford Europe, reimagined Ford’s pony with a smaller, European-style body.
It came with a lighter, smaller chassis with a wider engine bay, jumping onto the scene with a 5.0-liter Windsor V8 that made 140 horsepower. While the ‘80s model eschewed HiPo engines, they came with several special packages with performance upgrades to satisfy the fans with a need for speed.
Ford sold more than 2.6 million of the Fox-body Mustangs in its 14-year lifespan. There’s enough to choose from in the classic car bazaar with plenty of affordable models, although the rarer special editions do go for bigger monies. The average price of a reasonably good Fox-body Mustang stands around $20,000.
That said, if you decide to restore one from scratch, a project car can go for below $10,000. As a resto-mod, the Ford Fox-body Mustang is likely to get you a great resale as well, so along with great addition to your muscle car garage, these are a nifty investment.
Why Fox-Body Mustangs Are Easy To Maintain
Also available as a convertible, the Fox-body Mustang can be a great muscle car for people who love the wind blowing through their hair. Since this was the first Mustang to use the MacPherson-designed front suspension, it handled better than its older siblings, making it the perfect driver’s car.
Even at that time, the aftermarket for the Mustang III came flush with choices for better performance, and the continuing classic car market for this muscle car continued to give a boost to the aftermarket parts shelves as well. As a result, today, not only is it easy to find a perfect Fox-body Mustang to meet your requirements, but it’s also easy as pie to get the parts you need.
Even today, you can put down for a body kit, realizing all your widebody muscle car dreams. Other parts can also be easily located, making the Ford Fox-body Mustang an easy classic to maintain or restore. Another thing that works in its favor is that the Fox-body Mustangs came with the requisite safety and emission controls standards of its time, making them safer classics than the earlier versions of the ‘Stang.
Fox-Body Mustangs Come With Considerable Street And Classic Cred
The light chassis as well as the classic aero silhouette of the Fox-body Mustang, coupled with the varied engines and performance upgrades turned this into a track legend. It was the official pace car for the Indy500 and made its mark as a racer in the ‘80s. Even today, it’s easy to spot one of them at the tracks, with plenty of fans building up beastly versions of the Fox-body Mustang to take down far more modern cars without a hitch.
Back in its heydays, the Fox-body Mustang competed in several racing events, often beating out its arch-nemesis, the Camaro. While the Fox-body Mustangs lack the nostalgia of the ‘60s and the sheer maddening engine power of the muscle car era, they are a true testament to the fact that the Mustang emerged as a survivor during and after the malaise era.
Even as a lower horsepower car, the Fox-body Mustang managed to provide its fans with all the kicks needed with its lighter body and smaller size. It was this version of the Mustang that firmly entrenched it as a pony car in the annals of muscle car heroes, and you can always find the perfect Fox-body Mustang just for you.