34k-Mile Pace Car: 1979 Ford Mustang Turbo

Update 12/3/19 – This Pace Car has been relisted here on eBay with no reserve! It should be interesting to see how close it gets to the seller’s original asking price.

From 10/19/19 – This iconic 1979 Mustang is for sale in Katy, Texas, just outside of Houston. It is for sale here on eBay with an asking price of $22,398.92. That’s right, the Buy it Now price is to the penny! Of course, the seller will consider offers for this Indy 500 Pace Car. Being an all original low mileage car that looks to be in really nice shape, that price might not be unrealistic.

Production of the Indy 500 Pace Car edition totaled 10,478 cars in 1979. The special interior included Recaro seats covered in houndstooth fabric.  A buyer could choose between a 3-speed automatic or a 4-speed manual transmission. The 4th gear of the manual transmission featured overdrive gearing.

A buyer also had two engine options. The 5.0-liter V8 or a 2.3-liter turbo 4-cylinder engine were available in the Pace Car edition. Most Pace Cars were ordered with the 2.3-liter turbo engine. The Indy 500 Pace Cars for 1979 were loaded with multiple options including the TRX suspension. These are fun cars to drive, especially with the TRX suspension.

The 2.3-liter turbo engine produced 131 hp and 142 ft-lbs of torque. In addition to low mileage, this survivor has a moonroof and appears to have lived a pampered life. With Fox-body values on the rise, what do you think this one will sell for?


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  1. Arthell64 Member

    I like the 79 pace car mustangs but I don’t see it being in the same price range as the 93 cobras. It does appear to be a clean car.

    Like 7
  2. Miguel

    I can hear the engine knock from here.

    Like 9
    • Michael Leyshon Member

      Miguel, you say “hear the knock” about the Ford “Lima” engine. Have never had a knock in a single one ! Holley 2 bbl in the ’70s, EFI versions of the 2.3/2.5 in multiple Ranger trucks exceeding 250K with basic maintenance. 1984 turbo in a mustang (Non I/C) and have no idea where you’re coming from.

      Were you referring to a knock in the “draw through turbo” carb version of this car only? No disrespect as you know your stuff as an esteemed site member. Would love to know if you believe it has bad rod/crank bearings, poor castings/etc. Never had a bad experience with this engine.

      Please advise, thanks in advance ! appreciate your contributions.

      Like 1
  3. Mark

    Does Michelin still make the TRX tires??

    And at what cost?

    Like 2
    • Superdessucke

      If you can drop 24k on a ’79 Mustang, I doubt cost of tires is going to be much of a concern? Anyway, they’re about $275 per tire.


      Like 4
    • Andrew

      LMR now makes that wheel in a true 16”.

      Like 5
  4. Superdessucke

    24k?? He needs to find somebody who had one of these in high school or whatever and is now very affluent. I don’t see why one would buy this instead of that 1986 GT.

    Like 8
    • Brett

      I had the V8 version in high school, and even as a long time and multiple fox body owner, $24k is still not my number. Even though it has low miles, I would be tempted to drop in a modern 4cyl eco boost drivetrain.

      Like 2
  5. TimS Member

    There must be a $20 bonus paid for calling something “iconic.”

    Like 2
  6. MrMustang

    4 banger, pass…

    Like 2
  7. Marathon06

    Good luck on getting that price. It would need to have less than 5K miles, be a gold MCA car and be detailed to the max to be worth the asking price. This pace car is none of the about. It is nice but this is a $10-12k Mustang and I do like fox bodies.

    Like 7
    • Steve

      Spot on with your assessment.

      Like 1
  8. Djjerme

    One of the first engines I ever rebuilt was one of these 2.3 turbo motors in a ‘79 mustang hatchback. I ended up trading the car for a Pentium 3 PC (dumb teenager). Yah. Wish I still had that car.. By far my favorite year of the Fox body based on looks alone. The later cars had such a plastic look and feel.

    Like 1
    • JoeNYWF64

      I noticed they carried over the steering wheel from the mustang II.
      IMO they should have also carried over the superior quality & appearance of the mustang II dash too. & the door mirrors.
      HANDbrake usually means the console to rest your right arm has to be paced too far back.
      Seats look excellent.

  9. Michael Leyshon Member

    Not a very good set up for this car. 4cyl carb turbo wasn’t meant to be. Easy to put in whatever you want to propel it. I would advise to at least save what it came with, but not very viable to drive, even to a show. Certainly a nice car and they do often pull the price, just not from my wallet…

    Like 2
  10. jerry z

    I remember when that
    wheel/tire combo came on the Mustang. What were they thinking, a 15 3/8″ wheel! Those tires were expensive back in ’79!

    Like 3
    • Michael Leyshon Member

      Worse yet, can you imagine someone thinking that they could “squeze” on a 15″ tire on one of those rims ? LMAO, not that I tried (I swear, i didn’t , but i thought about it). The tire size on my 1979 Mercury Capri 5.0 with the Michelin TRX package was ‘P190/65R/390mm’.

      I thought my dad was an a$s when he tried to warn me. I was 17, loved that car. Kept it for 2 years BUT with steel rims and 14″ tires…

  11. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    And if bidding doesn’t come close to his original asking price, we will see the famous “Listing removed due to an error”.

  12. Frank

    Had a brand new 79 Capri RS that had 28 things wrong with it the day I picked it up! Not a great time in the American Auto Industry and not a great time to buy a first year model!

  13. TimM

    To much money for this car!!! It’s in nice shape but definitely not at that price!!!

    Like 1
  14. Danton

    What, exactly, is “TRX suspension?” I do it in the gym three times a week and it involves straps and at times, I’m suspended… Thank you SEALS for a helluva workout.

    • Steve

      It was the suspension package for 79-84 Mustangs that included the Michelin TRX tire in a metric size of course. State of the art at the time. Then, thank god gatorbacks came and saved the day in 1985.

      • JoeNYWF64

        Other than the firestone 500’s & later stones that blew out on explorers, i thought the V rated gatorbacks were one of the worse radial tires ever! They were the only radial to do an impersonation of a bias ply tire with lousy tracking & on a used ’91 3000gt in ’94 they were already cracking all over! WTH
        Yet my friend is still using his 19!! year old strauss cordovan S rated grand prix gt radial $43 raised white letter tires! lmao

  15. Ben

    Just watched a very low mile 85 gt convertible bring 18k. There is definitely a market for these cars.

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