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Fantastic Fords

Bring a Trailer has been on a tear of awesomeness lately, and I'd like to highlight two rare 1980s Fords that have caught my eye recently.

1986 Ford RS200 Evo
This RS200 is an under-the-radar supercar, with 0-60 times of 3.0 seconds and roughly 600 horsepower coursing through its futuristic-for-the-1980s rally AWD system. We've talked about the Group B rally championship before, and while the on-track competition was incredible, I almost prefer the fire-breathing street vehicles that resulted. The RS200 was at the absolute apex of that group--faster than the Audi Sport Quattro, the Porsche 959, and the Ferrari GTO, and rarer and more mechanically interesting than any of that group as well.

I want an RS200 so badly, and this example is so perfect, that I'm trying to figure out what assets I could sell to be able to afford it. With home values at a low, I don't think I can scrape enough together.

1986 Ford Mustang SVO
Considerably less exotic but still highly lustworthy is this basically brand new Ford Mustang SVO. Anthony Cagle recently wrote a great piece on the SVO that I recommend checking out, but essentially this was the Mustang Pony car turned into a European-style sports coupe. The key was suspension work and a the same turbo 4-cylinder that powered the Merkur XR4Ti.

This car has only 4,500 miles on it and is as close as you'll get to the experience of driving a brand new SVO. This would be a perfect addition to the 1980s sports coupe wing of the Chris Hafner Memorial Museum of Bad And/Or Underappreciated Cars.

--Chris H.


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$80-120k for that RS--given how rare it is, it would be cheap at twice the price. Imagine the fun you could have on the Tail of the Dragon, or Ohio 514 between Nashville and Danville, or rat-racing through Mill Creek Park at midnight.

And the best part is that 95% of the people who see it on the street won't know what it is or what it's capable of. You could have *so* *much* *fun* smoking badass SS396s and ricerized Toyotas in the stoplight drag-off.

Did the RS200 have a tubular frame? At least in the front half?

Excellent articles on 2 of my favorite underappreciated cars. The RS200 was an absolute beast in Group B(several drivers paid the ultimate price driving those). I could only imagine how simultaneously thrilling/terrifying this car's performance would be.

The SVO(I know I am in the minority here)is my favorite Fox bodied Mustang. While a late 1980's LX 5.0L is a fine car, the SVO represented a cultural shift in how a Mustang could be. The Fox bodied Mustangs (stock) are notoriously loose. Several aftermarket components really can tighten up the handling. The SVO's take on handling was Euro inspired and the 2.3L Turbo was potent and light compared to the 5.0L initially(later 5.0L engines closed the HP gap). The SVO was a slow seller (later 5.0L LX models had similar performance for less money), but the SVO proved that the Fox bodied cars could be more than stoplight to stoplight cars. As an aside the 2.3L turbo is about as stout an engine can be. They were/are not overly refined motors, but they could take gobs of boost with not ill effect.

I have been in love with the RS200 for most of my life. I did see one in person, at the 'car museum' on the Vegas strip. Could be the same car. If I had the means...

And if anybody has or is thinking about buying an SVO, X4RTi, or Turbo Coupe, I have a rebuilt turbocharger collecting dust in my garage.

Paul Niedermeyer, formerly from The Truth About Cars has his own site now. If you liked TTAC Curbside Classics, check it out!

"You could have *so* *much* *fun* smoking badass SS396s and ricerized Toyotas in the stoplight drag-off."

That would also be ridiculously fun around Seattle. It'd be fun to smoke spiky-haired mortgage loan consultants in their Infiniti G37s who think they can easily take what looks like an old Toyota MR2 with a body kit.

I had an RS200 Matchbox car when I was a kid. Does that count for owning one?

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