Feel Good Friday: A Prodigal Mustang Returns

I think we can all agree selling a car oftentimes comes back to haunt us mentally. After all, once the vehicle has left our possession we can no longer control who owns it or what the fate of it is. This thought lingers in most enthusiast heads and when a similar car is spotted, the emotions are evoked yet again. This exact circumstance happened to Jim Moore from Corsicana, Texas, many years ago when he sold his Mustang.

In 1982, Moore had been enthralled with the new Mustang GT that was being presented in ads and magazines. The new ‘83 model was slated to be coming with a Holley four-barrel carburetor instead of the Motorcraft two-barrel. So, after acquiring a wild hair to purchase one, he jumped in his wife’s 1974 Camaro and drove to Dallas to see them in person. Falling in love on the dealership lot was easy and he decided to purchase a an ‘82 model. What wasn’t easy was informing his wife that he had just traded in her Bowtie for a Blue Oval.

Mustang

After sitting since 2004, Jim Moore was able to reunite with a car he sold back in the ’80s.

Once she drove the car, she too gained feelings for the Fox and it became the family vehicle. Since this was in the ‘80s, his daughter even went home from the hospital in the back seat. Moore was a long time horsepower lover and the measly 157 ponies needed to be pumped up a bit. So, he installed an Edelbrock Torker intake and Holley 750 double pumper. To allow the 5.0-liter engine a little more exhaust note, a set of “true-dual” exhaust was fabricated. Even with the performance additions and racing every weekend, the Moore family still utilized the Mustang for long distance duties.

Eventually the fun was had and the car was sold to a family member. The family member decided to sell it to the local district attorney. This was decades ago and the car was all but a memory. While Moore stayed in the local automotive community showcasing his eight-second car, he never thought he would be back on the topic of his old 1982 Mustang.

If the red interior didn't bring back memories, the aftermarket tachometer that replaced the faulty Ford unit, surely did the trick.

One particular chat took a weird turn as he found himself unknowingly talking with the father of the man who bought his old car. The son had passed away, but the father was describing exactly what Moore had purchased and modified over 40 years ago. He asked that the man slip the daughter-in-law his number, in case she was willing to sell the Mustang.

Fast forward a few weeks and the call comes in. The car was driven for approximately 20 years before it was parked in 2004 and never seen again. The cluster registered only 80,000 miles and the condition made it appear that it was accurate. So, what does one do when he sees his old pride and joy reappear into his life? He buys it, no matter how crazy his wife thinks he is.

Moore figured this would require a full rebuild to bring it back to its running state, but after sitting for so long it still had solid oil pressure and no weird or unwelcome noises came from the engine bay! Apparently the previous owner had some fun with it, as a host of new go-fast goodies were included in the build.

All cleaned up and ready to cruise!

Moore had just finished up a 1988 Mustang build for his daughter when this one appeared in his life. While he might not have been looking for a new project, this one was too special to miss out on again. With open arms wide and a garage full of tools to bring it back to 100-percent, you can bet this Mustang won’t be sold again!

About the author

James Elkins

Born into a household of motorsport lovers, James learned that wrenching takes priority over broken skin and damaged nerves. Passions include fixing previous owners’ mistakes, writing, and driving.
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