To The Gulf And Back: 1986 Mercury Capri 5.0

One of the best ways to sell a project car, in my opinion, is to show it with an eye-popping background. The second best way to sell a car is to tell potential buyers you drove it there and it made it back alive. The seller of this project-grade Mercury Capri with the venerable 5.0 V8 is in Milwaukee, but drove his pride and joy to the Gulf of Mexico without missing a beat. That’s some street cred worth paying attention to: find it here on craigslist for $5K. 

Now, that first photo is clearly a forgiving picture. Sunset lighting is great for photographing a car with cosmetic needs, evidently. This Capri is said to be a strong project overall, that remains highly original albeit with tired paint and some mismatched bumpers. Now, in citing its originality, the seller points out it retains its original cooling hoses – that’s not a selling point to me. But it is a last-year model and the only generation of the Capri to have the V8 with fuel injection.

As you can see in the background, the seller clearly has a thing for oddball FoMoCo products. The Capri is a bit tired in other places too, as you can see the map pocket on the door is torn. Step into the cabin and you’ll then note this Capri is equipped with the automatic as well, but a manual swap isn’t too hard to perform. The seats and upholstery look clean and the backseat appears unused. The seller has a Marti report for the Capri and claims everything works, including the A/C and cruise control.

Out back, you’ll notice he has swapped on some McLaren-sourced covered tail lights, and that the original T-Top storage bags remain with the car. He’s also including a rare three-spoke steering wheel, a complete interior, a spare set of Marchal fog lights and the RS side body mouldings. While the asking price seems high, some desirable extras are included. But as with most sellers throwing in spare parts, you could likely leave some of those items on the table and negotiate down from there.

Fast Finds


  1. Nova Scotian

    Good runner at $2500.00. Not much more. IMO. Basically a mustang 5.0 in mercury clothing.
    I had a teacher in college who drove us students around in it once or twice. He had the hots for one of our classmates, and I guess he thought by hanging out with us he’d score. Don’t know if he ever did. He was only a couple years older than all of us, and he was a decent chap…with a cool silver merc. that pulled well. Just like this one.

  2. Kincer Dave Member

    I always liked these til they changed the back hatch to this style, too me it looks like they closed the windows and shot compressed air into it til the hatch popped up lol, everyone had a 5.0 Stang but these had better looks in my opinion til they changed that hatch.

    • boxdin

      a buddy had one yrs ago the rear bubble was broken one night ins co paid 2300 bux for a replacement. I imagine its higher now.

    • Miguel

      The car can easily be changed back over to a standard Capri rear end. The parts fit with no problem.

      Like 1
  3. Gary

    I had one just like it, Evan down to the auto and t-tops

    Like 1
  4. Rabbit

    A good compounding & a bottle of ‘Back to Black’ could work wonders for this car. At least try to get it looking as good as possible before listing it. Always liked these better than their Mustang sisters.

  5. That Guy

    One of the pictures is a used radiator hose, so I am guessing the seller doesn’t mean that the original hoses are still on the car, only that they have been saved for posterity. Maybe they would be the difference between first and second place at the Fox-Body equivalent of Bloomington, if there is ever such a thing. 😄 I agree with Rabbit; some time spent with various compounds and chemicals would probably make a big difference here.

  6. Rustytech Member

    I also like these better than the Mustangs, much more rare also. As far as the chemical cleanup, I would rather they not touch it. All those treatments would only make prepping for a repaint more difficult and time consuming. With this being from a rust belt state I would definitely want to get a close inspection of the underside before making any offer.

  7. Rob S

    What a cool merc! As a young mechanic with Ford this was the first 5.0 I got to drive and work on. The front air dams came in a box inside the car on delivery. We took the plastic off seats, installed the air dams and took them out for a test drive. What a blast these were. Liked them more than the mustangs at the time. Would love to have this one but a real close inspection would be in order and I have way too many projects as it is now. It will get scooped up and saved.

  8. Keith

    I bought one just like this one, even the same color and options. I bought it in Tucson Arizona brand new in 1987, might be the one I had! I ended up selling it around four years later. I agree that this one offered is worth about $2500.00 max, it’s a little too rough for 5k.

  9. Andrew

    I have a 1986 RS all original with 68000km. Owned it since Mar of 87. I’d love another one to mess with but as already mentioned by others, too many projects already. I’ll take one of these over a mustang any day.

    Like 2
  10. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    Selling this and keeping the Merkur?
    Having owned one, not a great idea.
    Fun to drive, but lots of problems.

  11. Jim Wichert

    This is my car, & is a great candidate for resto… I saved the hoses bc, simply, I’ve never seen that before… factory wire clamps, etc.,

    Keeping in mind that these are now over 30 years old, it amazed me that the car had no “Day 2” modifications… for being a Speed Density as opposed to Mass Air, makes that all the more incredible…when is the last time you guys saw a 302 Foxbody that STILL had a distributor bootie on it?!

    Yeah, me either… so, a huge selling point for being an original car… It’s a great car, & the reason I want her to go to a good home, is because I don’t have the heart to alter it (i.e. 5spd, IRS rear, etc.,) Plus, I’m a tinkerer, & the car won’t break.. I have the Merkur XR4Ti for that.

    I really struggled on whether to paint the car or not. I decided not to, bc I didn’t want any potential owners to think I was hiding anything.

    So, for a last model year, only year fuel injected, t-top.. I thought the money was fair.. I have way more then that, in it.

    …and going to the Gulf Coast & back? Lots a fun, & not even a flat tire ;-)

    • JD

      No rust?

  12. Craig

    I now own this Capri. I’m slowing, but surely getting it lined out how I want it. For now I’ve got the paint buffed out, but a respray will be happening in the future. I flew into Wisconsin and drove it 700 miles (through Winter Storm Uma) to NW Arkansas. It has been a blast to work on and drive.

    Like 1
  13. Craig

    A few more pics.

    Like 1
  14. Craig

    In the weeds.

    Like 1

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