Considering an 87-91 'Stang, need some advice.

nergalnergal Member Posts: 2
edited March 2014 in Ford
I have an acura legend right now but it just doesnt have the acceleration/available mods i want, i want a long lasting car so i gotta know how long can mustangs last and are there any specific problems that might need alot of repair, i was looking into an auto but i recall hearing that it had a weak auto, and my parents are concerned about safety, is it any more/less safe in a crash than an average car?


  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Probably your biggest problem here is finding a Mustang of this vintage that hasn't had the hell beat out of it. Being an automatic might help actually, as this trans is probably easier on the engine and driveline.

    You'll probably have to wade through a bunch of worn out junk to find your baby. As for "how long it lasts", a car will last as long as you'll put money into it. If you mean typical Mustang, you know, like any domestic car, they are pretty tired at 150,000 miles and would need almost everything by that time.
  • SPYDER98SPYDER98 Member Posts: 239
    I still think their the best cheap speed/bang for buck deal out there. I highly recommend you stay away from any t-top or convertible though. Those cars will feel like a bucket of bolts on bumpy roads. I owned a black 87 mustang gt t-top at one time and although I liked the looks of the car, I would of preferred a LX 5.0 with "power nothing". I still remember the time I shut the door while the car was running and for some reason, maybe I shut the door a bit tough, the power door locks went off and I was locked out with the car running.

    But for all the BS, the car was still fun to drive and beat on. The cars were meant to be beat, otherwise there really is no point in driving one. The engine power and throaty exhaust tone are what really did it for me.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    nergal--if after a few days you don't get enough specific answers, try posting your same question in tne Coupes/Convertibles Board, in one of the ongoing Mustang topics (might be good for you to read through them, the answers might already be there.)
  • nergalnergal Member Posts: 2
    Thanks i have most of the info i need, one tihng i forgot, about how quickly does it heat up? and by heat up i mean till the climate control will actually blow hot air, because my acura takes forever to heat up, and also lets in outside air through the vent even when they shud be closed, does the mustang let outside air in alot?
  • zueslewiszueslewis Member Posts: 2,353
    having owned and raced 6 of them. Feel free to e-mail me.
  • SPYDER98SPYDER98 Member Posts: 239
    Oh..I forget to mention. I froze my butt off one winter due to a faulty heater core. A very common problem with high mileage 5.0's of this era. When I found out how much it would of cost to fix...well I gladly chose to freeze my butt off instead ;)
  • zueslewiszueslewis Member Posts: 2,353
    i've had 6 Mustangs and have had countless buddies with 5.0s and have never seen a bad heater core. Would be a bummer to swap, though, just like with most cars.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 25,074
    Supposedly anything based on the Fox (Fairmont) platform was about the biggest pain in the rear when it came to replacing the heater core, at least compared to cars of that era. At least, that's what my mechanic told me back in '89 when he replaced the one in my '80 Malibu. I forget how we got on the subject of Fox-bodies, but he said they're hard to get to, and cost a fortune in labor. Mine ended up costing $225 back then, but I'm sure it would be a lot more now.

    Ironically, a few weeks ago when I had my Intrepid in for a minor repair (self-inflicted, I screwed up the drain plug), they had an '87 Cougar in there that needed a new heater core. This shop is starting to go hi-tech now, as the old guys who used to own it retired and sold it, and the new guys brought in computers and stuff. One of the guys was showing me the palm pilot they use, and he showed how it had all the hourly estimates for various jobs and cars in it. I don't know how long the average car takes to change a heater core, but on this Cougar, it was listed at 7 hours!

    I think I'd choose to freeze my butt off, too!
  • m1tommym1tommy Member Posts: 29
    Sir, Here is a brief summary of my short ownership of a Mustang. I bought a new '89 LX Sport. That was the LX body trim with the GT drivetrain, but you probably already know that. It looked great, was both quick and fast (how fast I don't know, speedo. only went to 145), handled well enough, and hauled plenty for a single guy's road trips. I kept the car detailed myself all the time I owned it, as well as being picky about maintenance (OK, I'm an engineer).

      The fun lasted for about 30k miles. By 32k, it needed front end work, evidenced by a shimmy where I could feel components in the front end rattling against each other, new shocks and struts, and generally rattled like crazy. At any highway speed, I could look in the rear view mirror and see daylight under the rear hatch. Most disturbing was that the body was breaking in half... yes in half. On both sides there was a nearly 2" long visible crack (in the metal, not paint) from the rear lower corner of the door well going under the car towards the center. Both the local and corporate Ford folks refused to answere any of my correspondence or phone calls, sent repeatedly.

    I traded in the car (nobody would even talk after test driving it) at only 2 years and 34,000 miles old, and wrote it off to experience.

    I hate to bear bad news, but that is what that LX Sport was to me. I know several other folks who have not had all my problems, except that all report that their Mustangs became loose and rattled by 70k-80k miles.
  • zueslewiszueslewis Member Posts: 2,353
    some surface rust (NE car), but other than that, no issues.
  • gasguzzler007gasguzzler007 Member Posts: 70
    The fox bodies are known as the best bang for the buck. They can be found fairly cheap and respond very well to mods.
  • bobunhbobunh Member Posts: 1
    Sorry to say friend, truly you're talking apples and pineapples here. Going from a premium Japanese front-driver sedan vs. domestic, mid priced, rear drive compact coupe? Huh? You couldn't have picked two vastly different cars. Be ready for a culture shock if you make the jump.
    After having owned late model Maxima's, Accord's, Tauruses and now an Intrepid ES, I picked up a short money ($3000) 1987 Stang GT Convertible, 5 speed of course. What a fun car. Cheap to fix, loud exhaust, tire chirp whenever I want. Actually it's not much faster than my Intrepid.
    I agree with many of the comments, specifically it sounds like a bucket of bolts spilled in the trunk every time you hit a bump. Remember, Ford didn't know what build quality was back in the late '80's.
    I just did the heater core myself. What a [non-permissible content removed], drop the steering column, dash, pull the console, yikes. But now I have heat! Yipee.
    My advice is to save your pennies and get to the body style change in 1994, much better fit and finish. Possibly get air bags, ABS and other modern stuff.
    Either way, plenty of aftermarket stuff is available.
    Good luck.
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