The seller of today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe SSC says that it’s always been garage kept. I think it’s been kept in the garage a little too much as it has but 661 miles on the clock. Could that possibly make it worth the price of a new GT?
Well, I must say I was a little shocked at the 70% Crack Pipe loss suffered by yesterday’s 1979 Isuzu 117-XG. I mean, yeah sure it had a lot of ancient Opel Kadett hanging out under its Italian skin, but when was that something that held sway when beauty and uniqueness was concerned.
Oh well, how about something with another, far more common underpinning?
Originally introduced in late 1976 to hold up the Ford Fairmont and Mercury Zephyr twins, Ford’s Fox platform went on to serve an illustrious career as the basis for a plethora of models, including what is considered the biggest bang for your buck performance platform around, the Fox body Mustang.
Now, keep in mind that the 1979-1993 is perhaps the least Mustang-looking Mustang there ever was, but that doesn’t seem to matter to most Musta-niacs as it’s been the most successful ‘Stang since the first one.
It’s also served as the basis for a seemingly endless stream of tuner editions and outright re-imangings over the years. One of the most well known of those is the eponymous series of cars by former race car driver and comb-over refuser, Steve Saleen.
This is a 1989 Saleen SSC, or Saleen Super Car, and is one of a small run of cars—under 200 total—that were built by Saleen in honor of the Mustang’s 25th anniversary. The updates were extensive, and started with a unique body kit that wrapped the car’s lower half in extensions. It also added a honkin’ big whale tail on the hatch. White paint with two-tone side details, and a huge SALEEN windshield decal add to the package, as do white painted DP five-spoke alloy wheels.
The show was matched with the go as the SSC sported a revamped 302 V8 with roller rockers, stainless tubular headers, and equipped with a fatter radiator to keep all that cool. Output increased to 292-bhp and 325 lb-ft of torque, a good bit more than the 225 and 300 of the stock ‘Stang.
Backing that up is a close ratio five speed stick and a 3.55 LSD rearend. SVO brakes brought discs to all four wheels while Monroe struts and revised springs offered improved handling and something else to talk about at Mustang meets.
Moving on to the interior, we see FloFit seats that are matched with re-covered door cards, plus a weird-ass steering wheel (it’s supposed to be a Momo) with the cruise control buttons awkwardly placed in its hub. These and a Pioneer stereo are notable Saleen-added bits.
Have you noticed that I’ve mentioned Saleen a lot in this car’s description? That’s the way Steve Saleen liked it. Saleen was the master of branding and self-aggrandizing, and I just realized that he made me type his name yet again in this sentence. Damn you Steve Saleen!
In fact, this car is notably light in expressions of his name. It’s also light in the miles department, having only a claimed 661 on the clock. The exemplary condition seems to bear that out.
Who would drive a hot Mustang so little? I don’t know, someone with extraordinary discipline I would guess. Me, I’d be doing donuts in every parking lot on my way to work every single day, and then taking the long way home every night.
If you would do the same, and feel that this Saleen has some catching up to do when it comes to rolling its odo barrels, then we’ll have to discuss what it will take to pry it loose from Mr. park it and forget it. That cost is going to sting a bit: it’s $38,900.
Yes, that will buy you a brand new Mustang GT with 435 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque, and also IRS, airbags up the wazoo, a six speed stick, better fuel economy and a warranty. But hey, that one won’t say Saleen on it anywhere.
If you want the full Saleen experience, and in fact a fairly rare car with a bit of provenance—they’ll build as many new GTs as they can— then this seems a fairly good example to buy. However, is it worth that kind of scratch to do so?
H/T to WindAdvisory for the hookup!
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