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A Lil' Love For Us

Via the Chicago Tribune:

Where have all the 80s gone?
When the Detroit Three tried to think small to meet mileage regulations, the results were mostly forgettable
http://www.chicagotribune.com/classified/automotive/used/sc-cons-0112-autocover-80s-cars-20120114,0,4919392.story?page=1

"So the 1980s was, on the whole, a ghastly time to buy a new American car. They sucspoogebed to rust and bad solid-state electronics; they were miserably built, wretched to drive and barely passed emissions when new. To be fair, 20-30 years have passed, so the good ones — and there were some — went 150,000 miles and were sped, a number in the "cash for clunkers" program.

It seems unlikely that people will ever collect 1980s American cars, short of a National Auto Losers Museum, but there are few left anyway."

Quote
Endangered species

1983-88 Thunderbird/Mercury Cougar

Rather handsome aero T-bird was a huge improvement over its boxy forerunner, and sold well, but almost all are gone now — a combination of flimsy construction, time and miles. Nice ones are worth a look, especially turbo models and the oddly-formal Cougar. $750-$1,500.

Collectibility grade: C


Nothing got a real decent grade in this article but golly...we were mentioned on purpose! Nice to see some recognition anyhow.

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #1
I love that the Fox T-bird/Cougar had "flimsy construction" but the Mustang did not ;).
88 Thunderbird LX: 306, Edelbrock Performer heads, Comp 266HR cam, Edelbrock Performer RPM intake, bunch of other stuff.

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #2
Mustang of the era are like rattle-traps compared to these cars. 


Im sure its just more sound deadening etc, but these are still more rattle free.
Mike

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #3
Remember that the author has likely never owned one of our cars. It's easy to be an armchair critic on that there Internets. ;)

Still, the subpar quality of the steel used in all 1980s cars qualifies as 'flimsy construction' in my book. Had waaaayyyyy too much experience with that in the last 25 years.
One cannot tell me that the door panels are not flimsy.
Fox seat backs. Sit down, do they not twist?
Hath the console latch withered the test of time?
Do seat belt receptacles not expose their fragile innards?
Oh, the arrow of time...curses unto thee.

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #4
I've owned cars from the 70's to the last decade. The flimsiest, most problematic, and biggest PITA to fix cars are the newest ones. My cats can sit for years with preventive runs every few months, then go to emissions, PASS, and go back to sitting.

I'm not following the whole "flimsy" thing. The plastics and metals in these newer cars are flimsier than the cats. The cats handle and drive great. My 14-year old niece commented how comfortable one of my cloth cats was and asked me why all the new cars have hard seats.

Well if the 80s won't be represented at car shows, I guess we can get used to being the only ones of our breed at show after show.
"lol.. because not too many people care for that style of car"
[size=-2]Click on paw print \/[/size]


A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #5
Quote from: EricCoolCats;378249
One cannot tell me that the door panels are not flimsy.

You should try owning a Mark VII then haha. :hick:
Matt
1984 Thunderbird - 89 302 HO, GT40 heads w/ Trick Flow springs, E303 cam, Edelbrock Performer 289 intake and 600 cfm 4bbl, Mustang headers, Jegs o/r H pipe, Dynomax lers, Mustang AOD and shifter, Mustang 8.8 w/ 3.73s, 3G alternator, Mustang front and rear sway bars, KYB 87-88 Turbo Coupe shocks and struts, and 11" front brakes.

1988 Mustang GT - GT40 heads, Explorer intake, 70mm throttle body, 70mm MAF, Crane 1.7 rrs, E303 cam, Kirban Kwik shifter w/ Pro 5.0 deluxe handle, aluminum clutch quadrant and firewall adjuster, o/r h pipe, Dynomax lers, 3G alternator, aluminum radiator, and 3.27 gears.
 
1986 Cougar 5.0, 1989 Mark VII LSC 5 speed, 1980 Mercury Zephyr 4 door (sold)

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #6
The Sport and I say they can Suck It !!!
'88 Sport--T-5,MGW shifter,Trick Flow R intake,Ed Curtis cam,Trick Flow heads,Scorpion rockers,75mm Accufab t-body,3G,mini starter,Taurus fan,BBK long tube headers,O/R H-Pipe, Flowamaster Super 44's, deep and deeper Cobra R wheels, Mass Air and 24's,8.8 with 3.73's,140 mph speedo,Mach 1 chin spoiler,SN-95 springs,CHE control arms,aluminum drive shaft and a lot more..

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #7
Hon
I spend money I don't have, To build  cars I don't need, To impress people I don't know

HAVE YOU DRIVEN A FORD LATELY!!

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #8
Ma
I spend money I don't have, To build  cars I don't need, To impress people I don't know

HAVE YOU DRIVEN A FORD LATELY!!

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #9
[im
I spend money I don't have, To build  cars I don't need, To impress people I don't know

HAVE YOU DRIVEN A FORD LATELY!!

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #10
"Mussel" car.
'88 'bird, 10.9:1 306 w/TFS top end, forged rods/pistons, T-5 swap & bunch of other stuff, 1-family owned, had it since ‘98, 5.0tbrd88 on Instagram and YouTube

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #11
:rollin:
Quote from: 50tbrd88;378300
"mussel" car.
lmao

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #12
I believe are cars our scarce due to low production numbers. Mustang had a rough time in their second gen. When their 3rd gen came out, public went wild. This eclipsed the sales of our cats and birds. Perhaps if they marketed these things differently, they would have sold better. If they were to let the public know that they were higher end versions of Mustangs, it would have helped. That is really what they were other than the power downgrade. Better built, and better looking, but on the same platform. Not the first time for Mustang to harm sales of other cars. Galaxie and Fairlane sales dropped in 64 due to the arrival of the Mustang. They were faster and much better built than the Mustang and didn't cost as much. It's funny that if the Mustang-Probe consolidation would have happened, Cougar/T-Bird popularity would have been through the roof.

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #13
As Eric said, armchair criticism is what's going on in that article, and a LOT of it.

I used to get aggravated with the red car, it felt like a rattle trap, especially up front. Nothing "looked" bad though, and I've learned a lot since then. I figured that's how they were built. Then I bought the black car and test drove that around the guy's neighborhood and almost ped myself. There's nothing else to say. Tight and quiet as any nice brand new vehicle. It has....maximum motorsports C/C plates. Big whoop? The rest of the suspension is original...I think maybe poly bushings or just NEW bushings all around, but there you go. And 100k on the thing. Never hit a pothole in its life maybe? Idunnfrickinknow but obviously it's capable of being like that. I'm excited to see what the red car does once it's back together and I freshen the whole front end.

Thunderjet302 said he did that and his front end is quiet as a mouse too. What are others' experiences? This doesn't get generally thrown out there a whole lot (I feel like it anyway lol)

Definitely the steel used was of lower grade. The welding/construction is important too. I see plenty of the big RWD 305/350 Cadillac Broughams, ones that have definitely been used in their lifetime, I don't see rockers GONE, doors melting away, the chrome bumpers usually blow out, that always bums me out. See that a lot, and the rest of the car looks nice. Look at Chevrolet Berettas/Corsicas!!! My friend has one, always have been impressed. There are two small holes in the driver's side floor around a body plug, but the rest is  good for almost 180k of year-round use. They double-galvanized all of the bodies on those cars. The mid 90's Blazers too I think. Panthers seem to have fared okay up here too considering.

My mom's 02 Explorer sickens me. There's a gap 1/8" by 2" in the pass. side rear wheel house where the inner rocker panel meets it. Like 3" inboard toward the center of the car. Right smack in the middle of the tire's width. Just open, they didn't seam seal all the way down!!!! So that rocker has just been filling with salt. I punched through the awful rot about halfway forward so stuff will drain and maybe limp it along. Other side almost as bad. Facing the frame, each side has 3 ovular holes. Each covered with a FOAM STICKY PAD. Huhh???? Yeah that's not gonna peel off from water/salt heat/cold. No way.  Mid-late 90's Nissan Maximas, Altimas rear wheel wells definitely, same era and newer last gen Tauruses. Honda civics pretty famous for that, the list goes on.
1987 20th Anniversary Cougar, 302 "5.0" GT-40 heads (F3ZE '93 Cobra) and TMoss Ported H.O. intake, H.O. camshaft
2.5" Duals, no cats, Flowmaster 40s, Richmond 3.73s w/ Trac-Lok, maxed out Baumann shift kit, 3000 RPM Dirty Dog non-lock TC
Aside from the Mustang crinkle headers, still looks like it's only 150 HP...
1988 Black XR7 Trick Flow top end, Tremec 3550
1988 Black XR7 Procharger P600B intercooled, Edelbrock Performer non-RPM heads, GT40 intake AOD, 13 PSI @5000 RPM. 93 octane

A Lil' Love For Us

Reply #14
I can't say much about rust. I don't live in the rust belt. I do know the rest of our foxes are built well. They don't rattle like the new cars. New cars have things mounted where there is nothing of substance to mount them to. Like I said, the rarity is due to low production numbers. When they were new I saw very few of them on the road around here.