Georgia Pursuit: 1988 Mustang SSP

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The more I read about Ford’s Special Service Package Mustangs, the more I want one. Lightweight from the factory and built in limited quantities, it just seems like a car you can enjoy everday while never losing a dime on the purchase. Parts are plentiful and cheap, and these SSP cars are growing scarcer by the year. What a combination! You can check out this ex-Georgia State Patrol Mustang¬†here on eBay, where the seller has listed it with a reserve and a Buy-It-Now of $10,000.¬†

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According to the listing, the Georgia State Patrol purchased only 100 SSP Mustangs in 1988, making this one a rare find. That’s because not only were some of them likely lost in accidents or being scrapped due to age, but also because the record-keeping after their years of public service came to a close is almost non-existent. They pop up from time to time painted different colors and with the police equipment removed, effectively hiding in plain sight.

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In addition to lighter curb weights, the SSP Mustangs featured engine and transmission coolers, reinforced floor pans and a full-size spare, among other police-specific upgrades. Each state had the option to customize their orders further with options ranging from roll bars to manual transmissions. Unfortunately, this particular SSP car lost its original engine and makes do with a non-matching unit, but 5.0 Mustang motors aren’t exactly rare.

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The paint scheme remains true to the Georgia State Patrol colors, with the two-tone combo featuring light gray paint on the roof, hood and trunk lid, and blue on the sides of the car. Some GSP Mustangs had the polished multi-hole alloys, but others were like this car with black steel wheels and hubcaps. I’d be sorely tempted to find all of the original strobes and flashers if this were mine; how would you use a genuine SSP car?

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Comments

  1. Jeffro

    The 1st speeding ticket I got was by GSP in one of these.

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    • Glen

      1st, but it sounds like not the only one, …right?

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      • Jeffro

        Yeah…GSP should of given me discounts as I was a frequent customer.

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  2. SSPBill

    http://www.specialservicemustang.net/VINlist/GSP/1988GSP225812/info225812.htm

    I found a link for this VIN on an SSP registry. My ’89 Colorado Mustang is in this registry as well. I can tell you these enteries are well vetted before the page is created.

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  3. David

    Those look like painted alloy wheels. I love these cars!

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  4. davew833

    Those wheels aren’t steel, they’re just black painted alloy with silver center caps. The Utah Highway Patrol mustangs had the same wheels.

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  5. Bingo

    I love a mustang LX coupe of this vintage, add that it’s a cop special, full wood! Too bad I have kids in college and a thin wallet.

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  6. tje

    Yes.. this would be a very cool ride.

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  7. grant

    We had a pair of these when I was an MP in another life. I believe they were ’91 or ’92. Scary quick and too much fun. Wish I was in a position to pick this one up.

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  8. Dolphin Dolphin

    Yes, this Fox body car would be a hoot.

    The seats sure look good for a 134K mile police car. I’m wondering whether this car was taken out of service early. I’m also surprised at the auto trans and wondering whether many GA pursuit cars had it. I know a lot of police vehicles did come with auto trans over the years for greater comfort for the crews, but I would expect that the 5-speed would be all-around better for a pursuit car.

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    • Rocco

      I agree completely.

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  9. Alan (Michigan)

    Jake: “This car’s got a lot of pickup.”

    Elwood: “It’s got a cop motor. It’s got cop tires, cop suspension, cop shocks. And it’ll run good on regular gas. What’ya say. Is the the new Bluesmobile, or what?”

    (paraphrased)

    Man, I love that movie. This car would work for me….

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  10. Sean

    The black wheels were on all SSP’s prior to ’90 1/2, when they went to the plain aluminum wheels.

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  11. roger

    Our Highway Patrol had some 5.0 foxbody mustangs like that.
    Made cool looking cop cars

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  12. Todd Zuercher

    I’ll agree that it has black ‘phone-dial’ alloys – not steelies. Interesting that it’s a mass air engine – those didn’t come into service until ’89 in 49-state usage so maybe this one got converted.

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  13. Howard A

    I know I’m being a little vain, but I’d like to think my comment a few weeks ago about SSP Mustangs tipped off Jeff on these cars. Maybe not. Remember I told you about my ’88 LX notchback? With the heater core issue? My car was exactly like this ( although, it was too fancy to be a SSP) Wisconsin never got the SSP Mustangs. They went right from the full-sized Dodge to the Crown Vic. Still, in my travels, a lot of states did use them. It was an intimidating sight to come over a rise, and see a Mustang staring at you in the median. I heard, while the cars had plenty of steam to catch the crooks( still doing the old “sheriff chases the bad guy” thing) many complained they were too small, and with gear, they had to call a full sized cruiser, to haul someone in. Fun cars, heater core issues aside. Car of choice for drag racers being a little lighter than the GT. Whoever buys this, be advised. That’s a lot of power for such a small car, and I had several tense moments with mine.

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  14. ags290

    We used to buy these back in the late eighties from the DPS auctions in Pflugerville TX and use them as autocross cars for a season and then pass them on. They were quick, handled pretty well and usually held up to whatever abuse you threw at them. All of the pursuit cars that I remember had 5spd’s, and most of them had bad synchro’s in 2nd. Some of the administrative or weigh station cars were automatics if I remember correctly. They were a lot fun.

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  15. Mike Williams

    It’s surprising how fast 225 hp will take you, 140 mph.

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  16. JD

    Not the original motor. Should bring the value down.

    Are the plain Jane 5.0 motors the same as the SSP’s, internally?

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    • Todd Zuercher

      Yes the SSP package didn’t change anything in the engine’s internals. 225 hp, just like what we civilians could get :).

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  17. JMB#7

    I remember when KY got these. If I remember, they were grey with black wheels. Sure seemed like a lot more fun than a Crown Vic.

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