FOX BODY MUSTANG – Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed

(car engine revving) (tires squealing) – It’s the tire smoking,
drag strip ripping, unofficial top muscle car of the 80’s. It’s got a reputation
for leaving skid marks not only on the pavement but also on your passenger’s tighty whities. (car engine revving) This European influenced looking sportster rebirthed the American pony car and ushered in a new generation of drivers slamming Bernie’s in front of the local Foster’s Dairy Freeze. (car engine revving) (tires squealing) Buckle up buckaroos,
’cause this is everything you need to know to get up to
speed on the Fox body Mustang. (horse neighs) Whoa! Whoa, whoa big fella, whoa big fella. Let’s ride! (electricity crackles) (old video game music) Oh hi, I’m glad you’re here. Donut just crossed three
million subscribers. Thank you to every single one of you that have subscribed
to our YouTube channel. To commemorate this moment
we’re making a special edition three million subscribers sticker. It’s only gonna be available
for the next 72 hours, it’s proof that you were
here with us in this moment. If you come in 78 hours, sorry
pal, you’re late to the game. This is for you guys, we
have no plans of stopping anytime soon, now back to work. This is how we make videos. Back when we did our up
to speed on the Mustang we gave the Fox body less
than a minute of love. We thought for a car with
such a huge following, and honestly such an interesting story, it deserved its own episode. So we’re gonna look at how the
Fox body Mustang came about, how it brought muscle back into
the American pony car scene, and why it has a cult following
like virtually no other car. (car engine revving) Now before the Fox body came out, Ford was selling the unimpressive yet confusingly successful Mustang two. Ford took away the V8
of the original Mustang, made it smaller, and
used the Pinto platform to build the new Mustang two upon. Now the infamous oil crisis of 73 put a hurt on people’s wallets,
and gas guzzling V8’s were thrown to the wayside. (jazzy music) In 1974 gas only cost 55 cents a gallon, that’s 2.87 in today’s monies. Everybody freakin’ pays that now! Although it lacked the
sexiness of it’s older brother, the Mustang deuce was a huge success as buyers wanted more fuel
efficient, lower priced, less extravagant cars,
okay, boo, no thanks. Luckily the oil crisis ended, and by the mid 70’s
people were back to buying full sized honkers that drank
gas like no one drinks milk. But the people over at
Ford, they were smart, and they knew that all that
gulping couldn’t last forever. And they moved to build smaller,
more fuel efficient cars, ’cause they thought that that would be the name of the game in the futs. So Ford engineers went to
work building a new platform for their fleet of cars to build upon. They called it the Fox platform. Just to be clear, this is
not the Fox body Mustang. We’re getting to the Fox
body, don’t you worry. Ford wanted their new multi car platform to be smaller, weigh less,
have a wider engine bay than the Falcon chassis predecessor, and be versatile enough to put a bunch of different models on so
you could drive around fast, or you could tote your
boring family around. Ford’s vice president of
product planning and research, Hal Sperlich, came up with
the idea of a world car, a Ford product that appealed to both Americans and Europeans. Now with Lee Iacocca’s blessing in 1973, Hal started the Fox platform. There were to be two wheel bases, a long wheel base, that the
Fairmont would be built on, and a short version for the
Pinto, Cortina, and Mustang. There’s a ton of cars
built on the Fox platform, Mercury Zephyr, Ford
Durango, Mercury Cougar, Lincoln Continental, Ford Thunderbird, and now that Ford was
in the works on the new multi platform chassis,
we could start working on what the Mustang was gonna look like. It took three different design teams, a bunch of concept images were drawn up, even one based on a wagon, but in the end, Ford went with the
stylings of Jack Telnack. He was the vice president
of design for Ford Europe, and knew that the smaller,
more Euro looking cars of the East might do well
on the American market. The all new third gen
Mustang debuted in 1979, the first Fox body Mustang. (car engine revving) The new ‘Stang got square,
bucketed headlights, inside a slanted grill. Had freaking louvers
on the quarter windows, and a wedge style hood. It was lighter, safer, more aerodynamic, it was a complete departure from the looks of its predecessor. You got five different engine options from an 88 horsepower
2.3 liter four cylinder, to the most coveted and
beloved Mustang engine of all time, the freaking five oh. (car engine revving) Although this early version
of the five liter V8 only puts out 140 horsepowers. But there was a beast inside,
it just needed some massaging. We’re gonna talk about that in just a bit. The Fox body also got
three different trim levels during its first initial year. The first one was called the basic (beep), not really, it was just pretty basic. Then there was the more
luxurious Ghia trim, which after some research
doesn’t seem very luxurious. It got deluxe seatbelts, map pockets, and a carpeted luggage compartment. Which I guess would be a nice gesture to all the people that you kidnap, because anyone who spent
more money on these options is probably a psychopath. The third and final trim was the Cobra. (thunder cracks) It’s not the kind of cobra that you’re probably thinking of. The first Fox body Cobra was
another appearance package that got a center mounted,
non functional hood scoop, pinstripes and slightly different bumpers. If we had to rank
Cobras, this one is about a one out of five hisser. A year later, the 80’s were upon us, and with it came a McLaren built Mustang? You heard me right, there are Fox body M81 McLaren Mustangs out there, 10 production versions, to be exact. Sketched out while in a Mexican restaurant in California, the story goes like this, okay so this dude Gary Kohs of Marketing Corporation of America went to his buddy Roger
Bailey who worked at McLaren. And he was like, we wanna
build a McLaren Mustang. Nice mate, rock and roll. But first, we’ll build some race cars and with your guys’ name attached, they’ll sell like freaking hot cakes, man. Sounds great (burps). True story, that’s how it happened. Racing in the IMSA series,
the McLaren ‘Stang got a four cylinder Cosworth BDA engine, Ford four speed manual transmission, and a quick change rear end. Of the two race cars built, the number two chassis
raced in the GTX Class in the 1981 24 hours of Daytona. The car finished 21st overall
which isn’t that good, and eighth in it’s class,
which also isn’t that good. But they did get in a wreck, so, I mean, I guess they did pretty good. From those race cars came the
production McLaren Mustangs. McLaren took the 2.3 liter turbo engines and gave them a good
old hot rod boy tune up with some head porting and blue printing for durability and performance. They put out a respectable 190 horsepowers when you cranked the dash mounted boost control all the way up. M81’s got BBS wheels, a WayScape hood, it got all sorts of suspension goodies and front rear sway bars, and
inside, even got a roll bar. There’s only 10 of the
hand built M81’s ever sold, and at a price of 25K, which is about 70K in today’s money, they were not cheap. – Pressure is building again in Washington for a new look at gas rationing. – In 1979 a second oil
crisis hit the United States, and playing a bit of catch up, Ford ditched the five liter V8 to conserve fuel and meet consumer demands. And it was replaced with the 255 cubic inch V8 for 1980 and 1981. The sole V8 option for the Mustang made 120 little tiny horse boys, the lowest horsepower
ever for a V8 Mustang. Ford also dropped the 2.3 liter turbo, so if you wanted a true
performance engine in your ‘Stang in the early 80’s, you were SOL, unless you were the cops. (engine revving) (tires squealing) In 1982, Ford produced some SSP models. SSP stands for special service package. The California Highway Patrol
asked for some Mustangs to test as fleet vehicles
after they tested some 79 Chevy Camaros for 18 months and they weren’t a good fit. The five liter four speed must
have ticked off some boxes because the CHP bought 406. – Y’all buckle up now. – And a year later, Ford opened the SSP up to other law enforcement agencies. And these cars were made up
until the Fox body was retired. Police car Fox bodies are so sick. – The boss is back. (tires squealing) – After a 13 year hiatus, Ford finally brought back the GT in 1982. Ford marketed the new
GT as the boss is back. An homage to the Boss 302 of the 70’s. The new boss 5.0 got a bump in power with new valves, cams,
exhaust, and intake. The popular five liter was
back and here to stay, baby. (car engine revving) The five year old Fox body
got some cosmetic upgrades a year later with a
restyled front face shelf that was more rounded,
and a new front grill. If you change the front you
gotta change the back, duh, plastic surgery freaking 101. And the rear end got new tail lights and a new blue oval Ford
emblem slapped on its boot. After nine years of not being able to let your hair flap in the wind, you can finally get your little
pony in convertible trim. (car engine revving) 1984 marked the 20th
anniversary of the Mustang, and to bring some attention
to 20 years of the ‘Stang, Ford brought back the GT 350 namesake. Now if you were an 80’s dude or duette and heard that Ford was bringing back the beloved GT 350 from the 70’s, you probably clenched your little butt cheeks with excitement,
well relax those buns bud, ’cause again, it was just basically another cosmetics package. It did get some upgraded
suspension components, but overall it really didn’t do that much to match the legacy of
the original GT 350. That same year, a familiar
name in the Mustang scene hit the road running. Saleen. Ford Saleen went off and built
their own American supercars. They were hopping up Fox body Mustangs. Steve Saleen was looking
to take all that potential that the Fox body had, and
turn it into race car gold. He took the cars to various SCCA races, winning along the way. His success on the track
gave his new Mustang some street cred, and
if you had the dough, you too could buy your own
Saleen equipped Fox body. So what made his Saleen
conversion so special? Well, he worked on the stuff
that makes a race car better, the chassis, the suspension, the brakes. He didn’t even touch the
engine, for two reasons, one, he didn’t want any
trouble with the EPA, they were still pretty strict at the time regarding emissions, and two, it allowed him
to sell his conversions while maintaining the
Ford factory warranty. Smart. (car engine revving) He used Racecraft
suspension, custom wheels, and a body kit that was
very period correct. And in the early 90’s, Saleen
released the Saleen SSC and SC, their first
crack at their very own Fox body with a modified engine. Saleen worked 290 horsepowers out of the beloved 5.0 for the SSC, and got even more power baby out of the SC with 304 buff horses. While Saleen was off modifying Mustangs, in house, Ford was
looking to put some muscle back in their production pony. The oil crisis was long gone
and performance junkies wanted more buff horses to put back
into their four wheeled steed, and Ford needed a division
of their own to do it. So they decided to form a division that would oversee not
only Ford’s racing program, but also spearhead the production of high performance, street legal cars. Ford came up with Special
Vehicle Operations Department, or SVO for short. Their first task was turning the Mustang into a more performance oriented car. Surprisingly instead of
going the conventional route with the five liter small block, the SVO team used the 2.3 liter turbo, making 175 horsepower and
210 pound feet of torque. The SVO ‘Stang was the
highest performer of the time. Now remember when McLaren was making waves with their own turbo four banger? Well the newly formed SVO,
they didn’t like that. So they killed it, they
killed the McLaren Mustang and said “We’re not gonna do this”. Now it didn’t take long for them to find the errors of their ways,
about a year and a half, for Ford to make the switch to focusing on the flagship V8, the five liter. Gone were the days of the
choked up 140 horsepower versions of the infamous small block, and here to stay were the 200 plus buff horse, high output 5.0’s. (car engine revving) Will go down as the
power plan that brought muscle back to the Mustang lineup. By 1988 the success of
the higher power motor led to more than 200,000
Mustangs being sold annually. One of the top American
sports cars of the time. Just look at the movies
that featured a Fox body. Caine’s convertible GT sitting on 10 inch gold Dayton’s in Menace to Society. Arnold Sshwarzenegger drove one in Twins. Tim the freaking Tool Man
Taylor bought his son Brad a GT as his first car. The Fox bodies were wildly
popular from grandmas rocking them to church to 16 year olds ripping Bernie’s in church parking lots. Towns were filled with boxy ‘Stangs. But by 1990 the Fox body itself was getting a little long in the tooth. Ford continued to make special edition Mustangs over the next few years. You got the summer time
edition, and the triple white, but maybe the best Fox body of all came with a three letter
badge next to it, SVT. (thunder rumbles) SVT stands for Special Vehicle Team, and they made some of Ford’s sickest performance cars throughout the years. Like freaking Lightning, and the Focus, but SVT started it all
with the Fox body Cobra. The 1993 Ford Mustang
SVT Cobra was launched during the 1992 Chicago Auto
Show as a way to show off Ford’s new performance division. The Cobra got an upgraded motor, with 235 horsepowers, and
280 pound feet of twerks. It could go from zero to 60 in 5.9 seconds and run the quarter in 14.5, this was a full five out of five hisser, with an upgraded transmission,
rear disk brakes, and the best looking wheels
ever to come on a Fox body. (car engine revving) The Cobra was a freaking beaut. The only other Mustang
that could best the Cobra was the Cobra R, why? Because R stands for racing. (car engine revving) The R was the swan song
for the Fox body Mustang, and it showed the world that the SVT crew knew how to build performance cars. It was a full on race car with no radio, no speakers, no freaking air conditioning, no sound deadening material, or rear seat. Only 107 R’s were built, specifically for IMSA
and SCCA class B racing. Although the majority of them are in the hands of collectors, so they’re just sitting
in some old guy’s garage. The Fox body came to an end in 1993 but to this day it’s still one of the best and beloved Mustangs of all time. It turned the Mustang back
into the muscle machine it once was and if you have
a Calypso green notch back five liter with a manual, hit
me up in the comments below. Hold on a second, you’re a Donut fan, but you don’t even have any Donut merch? How will the other d-holes know that you’ve got more power, baby? Head on over to
and show everyone what a big d-hole you are., also if
you wanna work for us, that’s where you do it,
there’s a join the team blink. This could be you. I love you.

100 thoughts on “FOX BODY MUSTANG – Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed

  1. Also James forgot to mention it in the video, but in addition to the special edition sticker, everything on the store is 20% OFF for the next 72 hours as well! Use the code "FIRST3MILLION". Thank all of you so so much! <3
    ON TO 4 MILLION!!! Love you guys.

  2. Calypso green notchback with manual transmission you say? I bought one brand new in May of 1991. Should have kept that nice 'Stang

  3. Becauuseee AAARRRRRRRR stands foooorrr RAAAAAACIIIIINNGGGGG 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 THAT KILLED MEEE 🤣🤣

  4. "Like virtually no other car". The GT-R in all it's variant's, GTI, VW mkIV R32, mkV R32, Golf R, Peugeot 207, Seat Cupra, Integra Type R, ep3 Civic, EG6 Civic, and EG9 Civic to name a few….

  5. Lincoln conti WAS NOT built on a fox platform. Wtf u smoking?!?! The Mark VII was. Why do I point out shit wrong with every video? You rushin it son

  6. Cause R stands for 302 with GT40 heads and intake netting 335 hp…wait…235 hp hahaha lol. No fox body amounted to shit without mods. But i love fox bodies, its what i grew up with and ive owned two.

  7. can we have an up to speed on the 70's oil crisis just so we don't have to hear about it again, and every time it comes up in a future episode, you can just plug your video on the gas crisis? for real tho i think it would be a decent episode, you can list off all the cars it killed (or killed at an emotional level if you know what i mean)

  8. 1988 Arctic White 5spd GT with red cloth interior and t-top, bought straight from the showroom floor. I believe it cost me around $16.5k! It'll always hold a special place in my heart, in spite of the fact that I now own its archrival, a canary yellow 1987 irocZ with the 5,7 detuned Corvette engine. It's powerful, but it's not as light on its feet like the Mustang of the same period.

  9. If you have to keep repeating the Oil Crisis kills the muscle car industry, I think you should make a video on that subject from your hipster milenial generation view and how the problem became a crisis. Who is the culprit behind the crisis? Does the system fail us time and time again? Do we need to adjust certain policies to halt the domino effect?

  10. All you REALLY need to know;

    Worst steering geometry and steering box ratio combo EVER devised… Worst weight bias : steering geometry (ratio) EVER (sans Shelby / AC COBRA). Weight bias (+/- hp) x steering kingpin angle + steering box gear ratio = Bad Idea… Most entry-level sports car to get you to your next. "MOST Entry-level" so expect douche bags… Hello Vanilla Ice Ice Baby? The rest is up to your wallet, or purse… Just replace the (many) parts that break?

  11. Guys, guys, guys, guys guys, pleaaaaase colab with fitment industries. You both are my favorite car channels and a colab would blow my fcking mind

  12. For the 5 plus minutes that I watched the vid it was certainly informative , seems to be well made. However all I could think about is how much I don't like your face, I knew it was going to be an issue when I saw the stupid look on the thumbnail but you know , figured I could get past it. Nope cause the voice matches.

  13. You are uninformed my dude. I have a 1976 factory 5.0 auto mustang II coupe. And EVERY cobra II had a 5.0. And there is VERY VERY little in common between the pinto and the Mustang II. aaaaand the Mustang II coupe was 300lbs lighter than the first fox. And looked more like the 1st gen stang than ANY fox, made, and without the II the Mustang name would've dies and the fox would've never been. So how bout a little love towards the II

  14. Petrol (or what American’s call petrol) is still ridiculously cheap over there.
    In the UK you fill up and celebrate if you see a station with petrol at £1.20 per litre ($5.90 per gallon).
    Be grateful, because my car still only gets 20mpg (US 16.7mpg).

  15. Thanks for another excellent and informative video 👍🏻 I have been a subscribed since you had less than 5 digits 👌 congratulations I wish you all the best

  16. "Everything Donut Media Doesn't Know About Fox Mustangs"

    1)The Fox Mustang was actually designed first. It was delayed because they didn't like the original BODY design which was closer to the boxy Fairmont and they redid it.

    2)You mentioned others cars on the Fox platform like the Thunderbird, Cougar and Continental but the pictures you showed of those cars were not Foxes.

    3)'79 5.0 was not an "early version". 5.0/302 debuted in '68.

    4)They didn't "make the V8 smaller" for the Mustang II. In '74 no V8 wasn't available. '75-'78 the same basic 302/5.0 that debuted in '68 was used.

    5)The Pinto was a sub compact and was replaced by the sub compact FWD Escort. The Fox was a compact and mid size. Plans to make the Fox platform a "world car" was nixed early on.

    6)'79 Cobra had a "center mounted" hood scoop? Where else would it be? Did you mean forward facing as opposed to '80-'81 Cobra's rear facing faux cowl induction scoop (same as the '79 Pace Car)?

    7)Turbo 2.3 was dropped in '81 not '80.

    8)GT wasn't on a "13 year hiatus". It was 12 years. Not GT was offered for model years '79-'81.

    9)Talked about '82 SSP cars by showing an '83 GT going around the cones!?

    10)And did the same thing when talking about the GT returned for '82 by showing an '83!? Even put "1982" on screen with it!?

    11)"Boss 302 of the '70s"?! Boss 302 was built for 2 years – '69 & '70.

    12)'82 5.0 had the same valves/ cylinder heads as any other 302/5.0 and used a marine 351 cam hence the firing order change. Still used single exhaust. True duals were introduced in '86. Still used cast iron exhaust manifolds. Tubular "headers" weren't introduced until '85. So I have no idea what you are talking about better exhaust for '82.

    13)Talked about "5 year old" Fox being redesigned for '83 but then showed an '87-'93 LX on screen!?

    14)"GT350 from the '70s"?! The Shelby Mustang GT350 & GT500 were sold from '65-'70. And famously the 1970 models were LEFT OVER '69s!!

    15)Didn't mention the '90 "7-Up" Limited Edition or the '93 Chrome Yellow Limited Edition.

    16)How exactly was the SVO the "highest performer of the time"?
    '84 SVO – 175 HP/210 ft-lb vs 5.0 – 175HP/245 ft-lb.
    '85 1/2 SVO – 205HP/248 ft-lb vs 5.0 – 210HP/265 ft-lb.
    '86 SVO – 200HP/240 ft-lb vs 5.0 – 200HP/265 ft-lb.

    '85 1/2 SVO (its highest rated year) did the quarter in 15.3 @ 87mph and the '85 5.0 GT did 14.9 @ 91mph.

    I'm too tired to go on…

    Try doing some research before making videos that MISINFORM people.

  17. so funny to see the 93 cobra running on the road i used to race my 1988 GT Fox Body at here in Vancouver. I miss that place it sure brings back some good memories. Vancouver Lake Racing.

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