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Backyard Project: 1986 Ford Mustang GT


You may think this four-eyed Mustang is a throwaway project, but bidders seem to disagree. Listed here on eBay with just over a day left, bidding is quite active for this project-grade fox body that has only 55,000 original miles and a host of new parts to go along with the sale. Still, some bodywork and rust repair will be needed to bring it back to life. 


The seller states that it has been stuck in pre-restoration phase for quite some time, but it sports an ideal configuration of being the final year of the four-lamp headlight and first year of the legendary 5.0 V8. It also has factory t-tops. The previous owner started tearing it down after an electrical fire melted the started solenoid and harness, along with damaging the hood and fender in the same area. You can also see here the floors will need plenty of rust repair.


The engine is original to the car and low mileage. However, it might be more entertaining to set it on an engine stand and install a freshly-built modern Ford V8 in its place. With all the other work to be done, your budget is likely to be blown out anyway. The seller has tracked down a replacement computer to deal with some running issues and the previous owner secured a new harness to replace the fire-damaged one.


I don’t think I necessarily disagree with the seller that this is an interesting mix of options for the Mustang fans of the world. It’s certainly not a cost-feasible operation unless you do the bulk of the work yourself. If you can handle the rust repair and sorting the running issues, all you would need to outsource would be a decent paint job. Interior components, non-damaged body panels and a set of wheels and tires are included with the sale. Would you take it on or just buy one already done?


  1. St. Ramone de V8

    My favorite fox body. 86 first year with injection and last year with that horrible t-top. Sad to see it in this shape. I would think the top led to the shape it’s in inside. I had several of them when newer. Like the 85-86 front GT look. Parts are easy to find, but interior may be a challenge.

    Like 1
  2. Mr. Bond

    I’m not sure that 86 was the first year of their legendary 5.0 V8. I had an 83 GT with a 5.0 litre V8. Was an upgraded version introduced in 86, or was it the injection introduced that year that you are referring to?

    Like 0
    • Keith R

      86 mustang gt or 5.0 coupé was the first year of fuel injection

      Like 0
  3. JW454

    Ahhh… Another one of those one owner cars being sold by the second owner. People… People…. people.

    Like 1
  4. Todd Zuercher

    I think it would be better to say that ’86 was the first year of the SEFI 5.0. I had an ’86 GT in this color for about a year 6 years ago. Fun car – I always wanted one because it was a cool car that came out when I was in high school. Did some upgrades/repairs to it and then sold it to a guy that worked for Bob Bondurant. I decided I didn’t like mid ’80s Ford build quality so much after all and went back to driving E30 318is’s. This one’s too far gone – scrap it.

    Like 1
  5. JW

    I agree Fords build quality was not the best in the 80’s but really none of the big 3 could manage to keep a car together for a long time without issues. I also agree the T-tops most likely led to the rusted floors even though I had a 85 Grand Prix with T-tops and they never leaked once in the 5 years I owned it and sold it to my sister who drove it another 5 years then sold it to her daughter and I never heard of them leaking.

    Like 0
  6. piper62j

    With all those ECMs sitting on the floor, looks to me like there is an electrical problem somewhere.. Other than that, this is a nice challenge if you have the time..

    Like 0
  7. Donnie

    the 5.0 302 has been around since 1968

    Like 1
  8. Patrick

    1986 is a very desirable year for the Fox bodied Mustangs for a few reasons…..as mentioned previously it was the first year for the SEFI 5.0 V8 and the only four eyed Fox with that motor. It was also the first year for the 8.8″ rear and “true” dual exhaust. Sad to see this one in such terrible condition! You can find EVERYTHING to restore this……there is nothing that is unobtanium. FYI, the t-tops were available throughout 1987 and mid way through 1988 when they finally discontinued them. The reason was the car was so powerful that the bodies were twisting and causing problems with fitment, hence rattles and leaks. I never owned a Fox with T-tops and don’t think I would want to lol!

    Like 1
  9. Eric

    The 4 eyed foxes were my favorite style-wise from that era.

    Like 1

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