Clean Seats: 1979 Ford Mustang Pace Car


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The seller of this 1979 Ford Mustang Pace Car here on eBay lists some interesting attributes for this 2,680 original mile example, including that you could be the first one to – ahem, introduce the sensation of flatulence to the cabin. I don’t know if that would get me to bid on a car but it certainly makes for a memorable ad, which goes on to say this limited-edition four-eyed Mustang hasn’t been driven or even run in many years. 


The vehicle was parked in the late 80s in storage and hasn’t moved much since then. The Mustang was female owned, which would offer some hope that it was used gently in its limited time on the road. As a turbocharged 2.3L example, this particular Pace Car is one of about 5,970 examples made with the 4-cylinder mill; the rest had the 5.0L V8 with either an automatic or manual transmission.


As one would expect, the graphics and paint remain in excellent condition. This may at least indicate it was stored well, despite the seller seemingly indicating it didn’t get much use of the kind that is usually required for long-term storage. It’s so easy to fire up a car and roll it down the street once or twice. The lack of use can often times have more harmful effects than adding a few miles to the odometer to keep fluids moving and tires from flat-spotting.


All said and done, 1979 was a good year for the Mustang Pace Car. It received standard Recaro seats and the period-correct Marchal fog lights, the latter of which was only offered in this model year. Bidding is currently over $6,000 with the reserve unmet and plenty of time left in the auction, so it will be fun to watch and see whether this seller’s colorful description yields a sale. Thanks to Barn Finds reader Jim S. for the find.

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. racer99

    Had a new “Cobra” in 1979 with the same engine. Traded it in engine smoking and falling apart at 35K (warranty ran out at 36K). Sure, this is collectible because of the miles and condition but a later SVO is a much better car.

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    • Bob Upchurch

      Racer99, I got a 79 Mustang Cobra with the 4 cyl Turbo too my junior year of high school. I traded it with over 100k miles for a new 1985 Mustang GT. The only issue I had was the turbo fan. Cost me $300 my freshman yr of college…seemed like a lot of money at he time.

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      • Bob Upchurch

        I should have added that the 79 was new.

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  2. Mike H. Mike H.

    I also had a turbo 2.3L Mustang (vintage 1980) in about 1990. It was fun while it lasted and received a normally aspirated 3.3L six from a Fairmont at my hands within a few months of my original purchase due to excessive oil consumption and turbo failure. While I can’t consider myself a fan of the Fox body Mustangs overall, the (3) of them I’ve had over the years were actually pretty decent cars to own and drive when compared with the alternative vehicles of the same vintage.

    Funny how your perspective changes when the expectation today is that a car had best last 200k miles minimally, but back in the day getting them out of warranty was a pretty huge feat in itself.

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  3. David WilkMember

    I truly don’t get the statement that a “female owned” car means something good about its condition. Is there some research that shows women take better care of their cars than men do? Or that the way women drive (all women? Some women?) somehow means their cars will be in better condition than a car driven by men (all men? Some men?)
    I think it’s likely tha some women take better care or treat their cars better than some men, but on the other hand, some men take better care of their cars and drive in such a way their cars are in better shape than those of some women.
    So I don’t think this statement means anything. Does anyone here have a different opinion about this? I’d be interested to know.

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    • racer99

      I always read it to mean that it was less likely to be dogged or raced but more likely to not have regular maintenance. On anything performance oriented probably a net gain especially on a manual transmission car. As with any other stereotype it’s prone to exceptions so make the assumptions at your own risk.

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      • Mike

        Tell you what when growing up, I would have rather had the trucks driven by my Grandfather than the Cars driven by my Grandmother, my Dad always said that Grandma had 2 speeds, flat out and stop, I have ridden with her many times and I am here to tell you she could scare the heck out of Richard Petty!!!!!!

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  4. JW

    I would like to know how the seller knows personally this female never “FARTED” in this car, was he personally in the car every time she drove it and sniffed out the air checking out her perfume or her body odors ?

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  5. Scotty G

    What a cool, but scary, time capsule. I know from experience that storing a vehicle isn’t always the best way to preserve it. Rubber bits and pieces still age and crack, and then they’ll leak or spin grease on your otherwise pristine vehicle’s underside (CV boots, in particular) (not bitter).. and other things can go wrong. But, this looks like a great car. I wonder what it would take to get it to run like new again; hopefully not a full engine rebuild. It sounds like some folks have had trouble with the turbo models compared to the V8s.

    I love the seller’s line about the Fox body Mustangs, “.. which we all know are the best Mustangs ever built.” I wonder if he would have some debate about that with non-Fox Mustang owners?

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    There aren’t many left for a reason. These cars were terribly engineered as of most turbo cars made by American manufactures of this era. The engines didn’t hold up and they burned oil.
    The cheap materials broke and rusted very quickly from what I remember at the Ford dealership my friend worked at.

    He worked in the service dept. and talked me out of buying one of these in 1980. It was sitting in the showroom for a year and one of the seats was broken. One of the window cranks was broken and the console was cracked. It had like 25 miles on it and was pretty cool looking with the graphics. I loved it but I’m glad he talked me out of it.

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    • racer99

      The new one I bought in ’79 was a really nice looking car and my first (and last) “new off the showroom floor” vehicle. I had a good friend that co-op’d at Ford and tried (unsuccessfully) to talk me out of the turbo and into the V-8 because the V-8s were faster and actually got better gas mileage in the in-house tests they did. The dealer I traded it to at 35K miles actually called me a week later and tried to get me to take the car back saying he didn’t know all the issues those cars had or he wouldn’t have traded for it. I politely declined. I have driven a later model SVO and thought it was a much better car.

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    We had a ’79 Capri RS when I was a teen. Same car but with a 6 cyl. Looked good in the High School parking lot, but it didn’t break any speed records. Beware of the pricey TRX metric tires

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  8. Derek F

    Flatulence-less Recaro buckets are a positive attribute. I had a set of these fantastic seats in my Ford Capri and moved them to my Toyota pickup DIY ‘roadster’. They definitely built up a funk after time, both from the flatulence and the leaky truck roof.

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  9. St. Ramone de V8

    When these cars came out with “Pace Car” status, as many others had , I wondered if anyone would keep one in perfect shape as a collector car, and if so, would they find their fortune? I think we are starting to see these things come out now. Buick Free Spirit, Corvette 25 th, etc. Limited edition cars from the ’70’s and ’80’s with some special graphics kept practically unused. I really don’t see the fortunes coming, but it’s cool to see them in this kind of shape. What do you do with them now? Start driving them, or hope for that money later? They are showing up now…

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  10. Andrew

    Marchal fog lights were used up until 1986 on gt models and the svo.

    Like 0

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