Hertz Rent-A-Racer: 1984 Mustang Predator GT302H

We all know about the special edition Shelby GT350s that were built specifically for Hertz Rental company, but did you know there’s another Mustang that received the H designation in its name so it could be a true Hertz Rent-A-Racer? While it wasn’t built by Shelby, this Fox body Mustang was upgraded to be a weekend rental racer for Hertz and it’s one cool ride! Solomon American built 300 Predators, but only 8 of them were built and sold to Hertz, making this a rare machine. You can find it here on craigslist in Plymouth, Massachusetts with an asking price of $12,900. Special thanks to Greg H and Eric B for this tip!

I’ll admit, prior to seeing this one, I hadn’t ever heard of the Predator or Solomon American. Tom Solomon, the founder of Solomon American Inc, was part of the team that developed the original Shelby Mustang and the Cobra Mustang. After modifying a handful of Fox body Mustangs with go fast goodies, like a roll cage, improved suspension and a hood scoop, a deal was struck for his creations to be sold at select Ford dealerships. How the Hertz deal came to be is more of a mystery, but I’m sure someone out there knows the full story!

To create the Predator, Solomon started with a GT equipped Mustang. From there, they upgraded the suspension, installed wider wheels and high performance tires, mounted a 4 point roll cage, added Predator finned valve covers and a free flow air cleaner. The 302 V8 really didn’t see much in the way of performance upgrades in the standard GT302, but there was an R option that included a built engine. The Hertz cars received the standard engine treatments, but with 223 horsepower and 287 foot pounds of torque this machine had plenty of grunt. It looks like this particular car has received some upgrades for those that really want some extra power though. The seller has all the original parts giving the next owner the option put it back to original.

Of all the special version Fox Mustangs built, the Predator might be one of the cooler ones. With ties to Tom Solomon, limited production and some sweet performance upgrades, it’s surprising you don’t hear more about them. I guess with so few around and the fact that they are just now starting to be considered classics, it makes sense that they wouldn’t be in the spotlight just yet. Give it a few more years though and these will be highly sought after collector cars. Do you think the fact that it is a Hertz car will help or hurt this particular car’s collectibility in the future?

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Comments

  1. JW

    I wouldn’t mind owning it and from the price of Fox bodies starting to climb the price isn’t to bad. IMHO

    Like 1
  2. Mark

    Nice car , but not sure how old or New these photos are, which photos are newest

    Like 1
    • Mike vz

      Two words for all of you……Grand national………..

      Like 1
  3. TriPowerVette

    “…with 223 horsepower and 287 foot pounds of torque this machine had plenty of grunt”! What you meant to say was; ‘…it has plenty of can’t get out of it’s own way’.

    For gosh sakes, it has 4-lug wheels! Are you kidding me? I’ve had cars with starter motors with more power.

    When you write something, just remember your credibility.

    • Brian R

      Before you throw stones mr. Vette man, be aware that your mighty 1984 Corvette had a whimpering 205 hp from a 350. This Mustang’s 223 hp from 302 cubes was pretty good in 1984.

      When you write something, just remember YOUR credibility as well.

      Like 8
      • TriPowerVette

        The 1984 Corvette was not at issue here, sir. Please see my reply to +Retired Stig – on this Barn Finds Link:

        http://barnfinds.com/late-corvette-summer-1972-custom-corvette/

        …where I state unequivocally my position on mid-late ’70’s through mid-late ’80’s Corvettes. It wasn’t until Lingenfelter and Callaway began modding them that Corvette began to climb out of its performance hole.

        This Mustang, however, had neither a ladder nor a flashlight.

        My credibility, as well as my statement, stands. Your attention to detail, though, lacks.

        Like 1
      • MM

        Fox bodies of that era were also notably lighter than the portly, underpowered Corvette. 223/287 in that Mustang will make it get up & dance.

        Like 4
      • TriPowerVette

        +MM- “Portly”? Yes. “Under powered”? Yes. Apples and oranges? Yes.

        Like 1
    • Erich

      Just remember that in 1984 the Corvette only had 205HP. GT Mustang had only 165HP. And the 1984 Camaro had all of 150HP. 223HP in 1984 was a very respectable number.

      Like 2
      • TriPowerVette

        +Erich – I still don’t understand where this discussion took such a Twilight Zone turn.

        This isn’t about Corvettes. It isn’t about Camaros. The author’s statement wasn’t; “For the time, this was about the best you could do…”

        I would have had no argument with that statement.

        His statement was that 223 H.P. is “plenty of grunt”.

        In an MG Midget, sure.

        In a Turbo Suzuki Hayabusa, you bet.

        My 1967 GT500 had a 428 with 2 4barrels… and that wasn’t enough! They were OK, just not spectacular. There were several so-called Super Snakes which substituted 427 Mid-risers. That IS REAL grunt.

        223 Horsepower? “Plenty of grunt”? Maybe to get someone to their gardening club, or sewing circle.

      • CCFisher

        @TriPowerVette – your nickname does suggest a certain bias,

        Like 1
      • TriPowerVette

        +CCFisher – Admittedly biased, but honest to gosh, this wasn’t about bashing that silly Mustang. I’ve only taken issue with what constitutes “plenty of grunt” in a Fox Body (or similarly sized vehicle). 4-lug wheels & 223 horses don’t cut it. “For the time” should never have entered the discussion.

        I gave you a thumbs up, anyway.

      • CCFisher

        @TriPowerVette – Don’t hate me, but I can’t resist….. “this wasn’t about bashing that silly Mustang.” Isn’t that bashing it?

        Like 1
      • TriPowerVette

        +CCFisher – You are absolutely correct. My frustration may have gotten the better of me. I don’t take it back. I do think 223 horse Mustangs are silly. But, I gave you a thumbs up, because you are one of two or three who have posed cogent points.

        How could I hate on you? You’re an adult, with a relevant point of view, arguing intelligently. It’s what we come here for.

        Like 1
      • carsofchaos

        Just as a point of reference the 5 fastest cars of 1984 were:
        1) Corvette 7.3 0-60
        2) Camaro 7.8 0-60
        3) Mustang SVO 8.2 0-60 (but this is based on the 175hp SVO, not a 223hp Mustang like the one listed here)
        4) Jaguar XJS 9.0 0-60
        5) Nissan 300ZX 9.0 0-60

        I have no dog in the fight, just an interesting point of reference.

    • Steve

      1982 Mustang GT was the fastest American car produced with 157hp. Got out of it’s way just fine, maybe you never heard of the foxbody movement.

      Like 1
      • Scott

        The guy said silly Mustang in the history of cars Mustang are the only car that people were fighting earlier at the showroom because they couldn’t make them fast enough I’m only 35 my dad told me about it he said it was crazy people just had to have a Mustang and the fox body took off like crazy people wanted then other than 13 different Mustang in my life started when I was a teenager and for the average person to get behind the wheel of a stock Fox body it gets out of its own way just fine pushes you back in the takes off out of Corners handles good and you can like the cars up burn them off of there if you want to it’ll lay rubber until you wanted to stop if you know how to drive it never had call Mustang break down on me and I used to abuse them that 302 hands down has been the best motor ever put out Fox body movement all the way

        Like 2
      • Rocco

        I went to look at a new ’82 Mustang GT. When I got to the dealer, all I could find was 2V carbs. I asked if there was an option for the 4V carb, and they said it was only offered with a 2V. I said how can they call it a GT Mustang with a 2V carb? The next year, they were offered with a 4V holley. By that time I had lost interest. Oh, and the 4-lug wheels was such a turn off also.

        Like 1
    • Dick Johnson

      Then there’s the story about the mouse and the Corvette.

      ”If you have a big (blank),
      You don’t need a Corvette.

      Like 2
      • TriPowerVette

        +Dick Johnson – big… what? Block? I’ve had many… thank you for your interest.

      • Dick Johnson

        I can’t believe that very few Cvette owners actually know about the mouse and the Corvette story.

  4. Gunner

    Wow Josh. The absolute coolest Fox Body Stang that I have EVER seen. Never knew of the Predator. I want it just for the cool factor. I think the price a is a steal for what it is. Awesome find!

    Like 1
  5. Brian R

    Here is another source of info regarding the Predator Mustang. It states that there are 8 cars built in 1983, and 130 cars in 1984.
    https://themustangsource.com/forums/f721/very-rare-1984-mustang-predator-cobra-one-130-built-84-a-437626/

  6. AMXSTEVE

    Whats up with the green dash cover? I think it’s one of the best Fox bodies i’ve seen, very sharp color combo and love the wheels. NICE FIND

    • Brian R

      I know, right? Why green?

      • pbryantr

        I don’t think it is green — just an unfortunate victim of poor lighting.

      • Brian R

        I think your right. The top half of the steering column looks green and obviously it is not

  7. Brian R

    TriPowerVette, your reference to a thread elsewhere has no relevance to this thread. You are unfairly bashing a car that compared very favorably to it’s contemporaries in 1984, which is point of my comment. My attention to detail lacks nothing.
    I have been a powetrain engineer for 30 years at both Ford and Chrysler including Ford SVT Cobra, Cobra R, Shelby GT500, Ford GT, and Chrysler’s SRT group and Ferrari powered Maserati programs if you want to talk credibility.

    Like 2
    • TriPowerVette

      +Brian R – Were you the one in those meetings telling everyone that powertrain development should ‘target right around 223 H.P., and no more, ’cause that’s just plenty of grunt.’?

      I give up. Go tell the Mad Hatter that Alice would like to have tea.

      Like 1
      • Brian R

        No it absolutely was NOT.
        Good idea giving up though, you are losing terribly. Just look at the thumbs up tally.

        Like 1
      • JamestownMike

        Glad to hear you FINALLY gave up TriPowerVette!

        Like 1
      • Rocco

        @TriPoVette,
        I’m with you all the way.
        When I read ” but with 223 horsepower and 287 foot pounds of torque this machine had plenty of grunt.” I about fell out of my computer chair. I guess that’s why it only needed 4-lug wheels. LOL
        This started out about HP & Torque, but has escalated into brand bashing. Lets try to stay on topic guys.

        Like 1
      • TriPowerVette

        +Rocco – God bless you.

        “…has escalated into brand bashing.” – Not to mention out-of-phase time-period bashing. Who ever said anything about the cars of the period? Except for certain exotics, the 1980’s was a write-off. Automotive Dark Ages. It’s what gave rise to the 1960’s muscle car values.

        223 H.P. won’t pull the skin off custard. Period. That’s all I was saying.

        I wish I could give you more than I thumbs up.

    • Josh Mortensen Staff

      Alright guys, let’s chill out. We all have different tastes and expectations from our vehicles. I’ve experienced cars with crazy horsepower and ones with almost no power, yet they were all fun, just in different ways. Can a Fox body Mustang with 500 horsepower be fun? Of course, but so can one with 223. Why argue about whether it’s plenty of grunt or not? If it’s not enough grunt for your tastes, that’s fine, buy it and add more power. Otherwise, leave it be and have fun with it anyways. Problem solved!

      Like 1
      • TriPowerVette

        +Josh Mortensen – Thank you. You are the ONLY person in this thread who gets it.

        EVERY one of the other arguments were fallacious.

        I made a simple statement.

        Everyone else wanted to introduce “for the time”, or 1984 Corvettes are slow… or whatever. Every one of those arguments was off-topic.

        You are the adult in the room. Just gave you a deserved ‘thumbs up’.

      • Angrymike

        It’s funny, ppl complaining about the HP ratings in the early eighties, well I went from a 67 Chevelle SS with a 69 427 (L68) with aluminum heads 4:11 and a 4speed to a 06 Mustang GT convertible with 300 HP, and I’m just as happy with the 300 hp + a few add-ons.
        The reality of the late 70’s early 80’s was anemic and anything over 200 HP was the stuff. I like this Stang and I’m not a Fox body lover. Neat car !

        Like 1
    • carsofchaos

      Hi Brain,
      Out of curiosity, from the vehicles you mentioned, which one (in your opinion) had the best overall power train?

  8. JamestownMike

    I also never heard of the Predator, great RARE car, great write up!

    Like 1
  9. Dolphin Member

    Hmmm. On the HP wars, I have personal experience of big-HP cars lacking actual pace on the road, and modest-HP cars going down the road REAL well. HP is often a marketing number, measured under very controlled conditions and then massaged….I mean “corrected” to give the ad copyrighters the best numbers for their ads.

    For me the question is: How does the car actually go down the road. I have not been able to find performance figures on the web for Predators, probably because different Predators were often built differently—different engine mods, different rear end ratios, etc. But it would be easy to imagine this car getting out of its own way, and more. And when people talk about these on the web they say real good things about them.

    I’ve said a few times that I like Fox body Mustangs. The one I would want would be a Saleen, but most of those have appreciated big. This Predator looks to me like a Saleen competitor without the real high price. And with a smaller rear spoiler, it’s better looking too. The black paint—-even better.

    Anyone who is interested in the car should look at the CL listing. Waaay better than 99.9% of car listings on there. I think the seller knows what he’s talking about, and I wouldn’t second guess him on this car. And it has what sounds to me like real good suspension and other upgrades.

    I think this car is almost certain to be a seriously good performer. I wish I could jump on it.

    And definitely agree with JamestownMike—great writeup Josh.

    Like 1
    • Josh Mortensen Staff

      Well put Dolphin! And thanks, I’m loving this Mustang. I just wish I could afford to buy it!

      Like 1
    • TriPowerVette

      +Dolphin – There is little to disagree with what you have said. Some good wisdom here. Thumbs up.

      • GM RECALLS WIN

        223 was pretty nice HP I had an 87 Escort Gt that Ford calmed it had 92 HP to 105 HP to sell them but it felt it had way more… So 1 day I took my Gt Escort to school on the Dino and my surprise it was pushing 216 HP way under rated by Ford to sell it… Ford lied on it I have to say my buddy had an 84 85 vettes I smoked both his stock vettes with a 4 cylinder Escort so I took it apart put a drop piston set with roller lifters advanced timing little put back on the Dino my Gt Escort pushed 261 HP then turbo I got 307 HP smoking lots of corvettes badly with a 4 cylinder so to push over 200 HP back in the 80s was huge accomplishment with any engine 4 or 8 point is this Mustang will out run any vette in 84 I put million on it even if I still had my Escort Gt I would put title for title even house everything I own I smoked any 80s corvette…

        Like 1
  10. Poseur

    The Minilites make it.
    We had an 84 Vette (2 actually) in ‘84, my senior year in HS & I took the red one to the local Ford & Nissan dealerships to test drive the best they had. 280zx Turbo Anniversary with Bodysonic stereo was ok. Mustang SVO WAS BADASS. Way more fun than GT 5.0 with 14” rims (vs 16” Gatorbacks) & it barked the fat Eagle VR’s into second while the 5.0 axle tramped like an epileptic.
    Yes, that was as good as it got.
    The 84 Vettes went 140+ mph (personally certified with radar gun) & nothing else was even close.
    I drive a 450+ rwhp truck & CTS-V now & roadrace sportbikes.
    But in 1984 223hp was AWESOME.

    Like 1
  11. Oddimotive Cason Oddimotive Cason Member

    I remember the Predator and Hertz version from magazines, but have never seen an H come up for sale. Sweet temptation!

    I wonder where they got their 223HP figure – seems a bit optimistic for minimal mods vs. a basic 1984 GT. Naturally, I want it, regardless.

  12. Mr. TKD

    Is that the correct steering wheel for a Mustang of that vintage? It looks like something from a LTD.

    • Dave

      I thought the same thing. That is the standard ford steering wheel for this period. I expected to see the GT 3 spoke on this.

    • JDScurlock

      My ’84 Mustang LX had the exact same steering wheel as this one.

  13. David Ulrey

    Most annoying comments column I have seen yet. Had an 88 GT convertible and loved it and it had plenty power to get all kinds of stupid if you choose to. Irrelevant though, ya like it, ya like it, ya don’t, ya don’t. Too much petty arguing here in a manner that is supposed to be presented in a so called intelligent way. Some people won’t stop trying to get their point across. I know because I have a 15 year old son that is just like that.

    Like 1
    • JDScurlock

      Agreed. I had an ’84 LX with a slightly tweaked 3.8. And while I won’t say it never lost a race (it did), it put many of its contemporaries to shame (actual shame, as in they had a hard time admitting a V6 mustang had bested them). It’s never just about sheer power.

      Like 2
  14. D

    Some of these comments sounded like entries in a tinkle contest.

    Like 2
  15. Larry Q

    Good thing no one started about torque ratings…

    Like 2
  16. Troy S

    Sometimes you guys just crack me up, I forgot what the car even was by the time I read all those comments. Tinkle contest!! Hahaha!😂

    Like 1
  17. Shelli Anne

    As a woman I probably shouldn’t even comment here about the fascination with sheer horsepower but I have a gal pal (avid rally driver) who drives an ancient Fox body ex-police car who routinely stomps on Mustangs with far greater horsepower on a routine basis. I would suggest sheer horsepower doesn’t make mediocre drivers great , driver skill also plays into what makes a car “great” .

    Like 1
    • MARIE

      absolutely horsepower means nothing if you cannt drive !

  18. chad

    tq is king – HP, eh.
    ‘king’ esp at low revs…
    One guy’s opinion ~
    (might’s well add it as many others have).

  19. Rob from Texas

    This thread smelled like a political posting on Facebook. Thanks to Josh and others for calming it down.

  20. Todd from Boston

    Interesting commentary on my car. You’d think a website catering to vintage vehicles would have people who comprehend that this cars performance in 1984 stacked up real well against cars in 1984? The car has a deposit on it but will “officially” be sold in the spring. If anything changes I’ll advise.

    Like 2

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