Our car guy loyalties are typically defined by any era in our lives that made the biggest automotive impression upon us.


That timeline occurs in our younger years when we first started to notice cars, girls and Top 40 music in no particular order.


The girls of our youth made an impression at school, the songs of our youth made an impression on the car radio, and the cars of our youth made an impression on the street.


The ultimate goal was to own the car that rocked our world when we were kids. In adolescent theory, the other two would be part of the equation when we got that cool car.




For most of us, the program never quite worked out because car ownership was just a concept to a kid in grade school and the cost of our dream cars still made them unreachable in high school. The one constant was the fact we developed a lifelong unrequited love for the cars from our youth.




Some car guys reach a point in life where they can fulfill the car dreams from their younger days because they have accumulated enough financial resources to chase down their dream rides.


The result is a search to find vehicles that have been out of production for many years and have not been destroyed over the ensuing decades. Supply and demand are the two major factors behind the price tag found on an obsolete vehicle.




For example, any muscle car from the mid to late 60s will generate plenty of interest from the baby boomers because these cars were the biggest stars in our automotive universe when we were much closer to the baby part of our generation.




The generation behind us had a different philosophy about cars because they were influenced by newer cars. Gen-Xers are more likely to be interested in rides from the Eighties and they are now in a position to buy the cars from the days when their paper route income was too light to own the 80s stars.


One of the big stars for the Gen-X crowd is the Fox body Mustang and the recent Barrett Jackson auction proved the Fox bodies have become a hot commodity.


The Fox body Mustang debuted as a 1979 model and stayed in the game until 1993. The Fox bodies were a different kind of pony from Ford because they had a MacPherson strut front suspension that provided better handling and had more room under the hood.




The first few years of Fox body Mustangs were a performance disappointment because Ford was in the midst of a fuel economy program and downsized the 1980-81 302 to a 255 version.


All bets were off as the Fox body Mustang moved through the Eighties and gained big upgrades to its performance. The cars were road rockets that offered highly engineered turbo four-cylinder engines and beefier 302 power choices.




The Mustang fell out of favor in the mid-80s and was in danger of heading to the big garage in the sky. Instead it was re-designed in 1987 and built in Venezuela until 1993 (except for the SVT Cobra version) when it returned to its American manufacturing base.




The long and winding road for the world’s most famous pony car took an interesting turn during the Mustang’s Fox body era.




Now the Fox body has become a good investment for collectors because the Gen-X car guys who were too young to own a new Mustang in the Eighties can now write a check to buy a used one. Even at a higher price than the original sticker price because nostalgia can be a very expensive concept.


Just ask the Baby Boomers.


Jim Sutherland


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