Original Paint: 1982 Mercury Capri RS 5.0

While the auction has closed for this shockingly clean 1982 Mercury Capri RS 5.0, it’s still worth discussing for a few reasons. For one, the Capri is the much lesser seen twin to the Mustang, and two, Hemmings is apparently offering auction services now. This example sold for a reasonable $12,750, and featured excellent cosmetics along with the preferred manual transmission / V8 combo. Check it out here on Hemmings and thanks to Barn Finds reader John Fischer for the find.

I’ve always been a fan of owning the obscure version of a mass-produced car, simply for the notoriety factor. But I’d also argue in the case of the Capri that it was the better looking variant, and still offered the same performance of its four-eyed twin. The squared-off nose was just angrier, and more intimidating than the sloped beak of the Mustang. And tinted taillights are a must-have on any 80s muscle car.

This example features the preferred bordello-red upholstery and carpet of most domestic products from this era, and it remains in impressive condition. Factor in the T-top roof and the prodigious amounts of sunlight it lets in and the high degree of preservation is even more impressive. Despite being the upscale brand, nothing in here feels particularly luxurious compared to its roughneck sibling.

As a brand, Mercury has never been particularly successful at stepping out of its corporate sibling’s shadow, but the company also never worked particularly hard to distinguish its products. These days, finding a survivor-grade Capri is akin to finding the proverbial needle in the haystack, so it’s of little surprise to see this one find a new home. Which Fox body twin would you choose?

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Comments

  1. 86_Vette_Convertible

    I like it, more than a comparable Mustang. Doesn’t really matter though, it’s already been sold so that’s done. It was a good looking car, properly set up as a drivers car IMO.

    2
  2. Nick Hockman Member

    In this year they were betrer looking than the mustang. Loved the flairs.

    4
  3. Bill Neumiller

    I bought a ‘79 Capri Ghia in ‘81 after graduating college. Had the 5.0 and 4-speed. Really enjoyed it. Good looking car! The only downside was replacing those Michelin TRX tires.

    1
    • Billieg

      And the struts in the front every 15k miles…

  4. rpol35

    Wow, not a FMC guy but really nice – very clean and well preserved.

    My sister-in-law had an ’82 Capri but it had a four cylinder engine. By 1987, it had been rode hard and put away wet – looked like cr@p. I don’t ever recall seeing one of these this nice, especially 37 years after the fact.

    1
  5. CanuckCarGuy

    Beautiful. Much better looking than the Mustang, and even better looking with the bubble-back rear hatch in my opinion.

    3
  6. Troy s

    One of the four hot pony cars in ’82 that reignited the performance car trend, which has never let up since. 302 2barrel HO was good for 16’s in the quarter, barely…. young people may laugh but that was actually good news back in ’82. It wasn’t great but a more of a start in the right direction,,,finally!
    I never thought it would last before regulations and corporate rumors would kill it off. Turbo 4 bangers and front wheel drive seemed the inevitable wave of the future.
    This is an excellent example of early eighties pusedo muscle, never seen one so well taken care of. Good luck to the new owner!

    1
  7. grant

    I had one, an ’80. 4 banger 4 speed car, but as an 18 year old I liked it. Bright orange with a brown hounds tooth interior. It was nicer than it sounds, lol. Oh, the taillights aren’t tinted, they’re louvered.

    1
  8. Michael

    Very nice. I always liked the Capri over the Mustang. The Capris were sweet.

  9. Bakyrdhero Member

    An 86 Capri 5.0 with a bubble back rear window was a real sharp car and better looking than and fox Mustang of the day IMO. This car in particular is a looker and very well kept, I wish it had different rims though.

    • RayT Member

      You don’t like TRX tires? They’re still available, but not inexpensive.

      Nice-looking car, but I’d prefer the 5-speed and rims that let the owner choose from a wider variety of rubber.

      • Bakyrdhero Member

        I’m not a fan of the look of the TRX rims. I’ve never had to replace the rubber on them. These Capri’s look awesome with a set of 87+ Mustang GT turbines or the 10 hole Mustang rims.

        3
  10. Steve R

    It’s nice, but I’m a bit surprised a 2bbl 4spd manual would crack five figures. I figured it would take a 5spd and either a later 4bbl or EFI car to reach that amount.

    Steve R

    • Otis

      Market has shown what it takes and it’s pretty simple: Condition, V8, manual transmission, and low miles. Doesn’t need a 4 bbl, 5 speed, or EFI.

      4
  11. Mike ROONEY

    Better looking than the comparable Mustang with a much better looking front end. Considering the condition and rarity, the sold price seems fair, at least in my opinion. The 5.0 with a two barrel was fairly anemic but it’s an engine that has a lot of potential and a huge amount of after market go-fast goodies available.

    This is a really sharp car that would respond well to performance upgrades, one I’d love to have.

  12. Maynard Reed Jr

    Always liked the capri better than the mustang. Trouble is I don’t fit in them well. This looks very clean.

    1
  13. Miguel Member

    How about the Mexican version which was a coupe with the 5.0 auto or stick with air or not and which come with the Capri from end treatment with the Mustang fenders?

    Keep in mind these cars have no smog on them so they are not choked out like the American versions were.

    8
    • 36Packard

      Pollution control on cars was needed in this country and yours too. I do not know how old you are, but I remember around 1970 coming into a major US city and seeing the black haze miles outside of it on the freeway. I do not miss those days, besides, modern tech gives us great cars with no pollution to boot. I also recall being in Mexico City about 20 years ago and was appalled to see how bad the air still was there. Please tell me it has gotten better since. Say what you want about emissions control, it had to be done.

  14. Miguel Member

    Here is the engine shot from a 1982 Mexican version (different car). This one came from the factory as a coupe and the Capri tail lights.

    2
  15. Miguel Member

    Here is the rear shot.

    2
    • Troy s

      Strange I’ve never seen one, living forty miles or so from the border north of Tijuana. It’s different looking, almost reminds me of a Mustang II for some reason.
      By 1985 the 302 HO was hardly choked down by the smog controls, the four barrel dual exhaust 5 speed could dip well into the 14 second range. Quick off the line with the five speed. Instead of fighting with emissions equipment the engineers we’re learning how to work with them. Even this ’82 felt peppy at the time
      Adios!

  16. scottymac

    Having owned a ’76 German Capri II, I thought the switch to a heavier Fox body a downgrade, unless you’re talking the V-8 models. Prefer the looks of the Mustang over the Fox Capri, as long as we’re talking the ’79 pace car, ’80 Cobra, or ’82 GT nose. The run of the mill Mustangs in those first few years of Fox bodies weren’t the best styled, but look where they led. Someone had a Shelby GT350 R at Focus Fest in East St. Louis last weekend, and the shriek of that V-8 was goose bump producing!

    • Troy s

      They really weren’t the best looking car, especially when the all new third gen Camaro hit the showrooms for ’82. Firebird as well. No way Ford could compete with that sleek styling, so they went under the hood and bumped up the 302, called it the 5.0 HO, and it just progressed from there, power wise. But lookswise, the Mustangs and Capris were fairly…. ordinary. Not bad, just not head turning material. My own opinion of course.

      • Daved

        I couldn’t agree more! The F-bodies stole the show with the 82 redesign 🖤

        1
  17. Daved

    I’d take the Capri, just to avoid the stereotyping 🤣

    1
  18. Skorzeny

    I used to work in the tire industry in the Twin Cities (MN) and I remember seeing Mustangs that left the factory with these alloy wheels running around on black steel rims with conventional rubber. It made me laugh my ass off. Don’t buy the damn car if you can’t afford to replace the rubber… Hahaha! The cars then looked ridiculous.

  19. Joseph Robbins

    I’m a lifelong Chevy guy but I have liked the Capri ever since they first came out. Nice car..

  20. Rob

    Did anyone else notice the worn clutch and brake pedals?

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