By on June 18, 2014

13 - 1988 Ford Escort GT Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinFord’s first American-built front-wheel-drive compact car was so much better than the miserable Pinto it replaced that it sold in huge quantities. The first-generation GT wasn’t especially quick, but it looked cool (by 1980s standards) and probably swiped a few sales away from the Civic Si and Volkswagen GTI. Nearly all of the pre-Mazda Escort GTs wore out, depreciated to oblivion, and got crushed during the 1990s, but I still see the occasional example in wrecking yards these days. Here’s one that I spotted in Northern California in December.
19 - 1988 Ford Escort GT Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinIt looks much like a contemporary Fox Mustang, which was a pretty quick car by the last 1980s.
10 - 1988 Ford Escort GT Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee MartinThe 1.9 liter engine made 108 horsepower, which wasn’t bad in 1988.


It fits right in with the Thunderbird Turbo Coupe and Taurus.


Who wouldn’t want a “carefully selected” interior?
07 - 1988 Ford Escort GT Down On The Junkyard - Picture courtesy of Murilee Martin
There must be a story behind this afterthought-looking warning sticker on the HVAC controls.

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75 Comments on “Junkyard Find: 1988 Ford Escort GT...”


  • avatar

    FYI: the Escort’s overhead console with high tech 1980s Digital Clock is a great addition to the digital clock-less 87-93 Fox Mustang.

  • avatar
    alsorl

    Not a bad hatchback for that time period. I just remember a ton of torque steer in that model.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      There is a white Escort GT from this era being used as a daily driver around here. It’s one of the few 1980s cars still on the road in this area.

      These were decent-looking cars for the time. Ford had the bugs worked out by 1985, and had made upgrades to the drivetrain, suspension and interior through the mid-1980s. My father had an 1986 Pony, and my aunt had a 1987 wagon…both gave years of good service. My dad’s car, in particular, withstood a lot of abuse from him, as he has never been one to lavish much care on his cars.

  • avatar
    cwallace

    That sticker is what you get when you insist on calling the setting “Max AC” instead of “Recirculate”, which makes a heck of a lot more sense. It seems like American cars held on to this for a very long time– what if I want to close the cabin but not turn the AC on?

    I like how the vent fan looks like it only has two settings, it’s either off or running full blast.

  • avatar
    I've got a Jaaaaag

    We had Escorts as Driver’s Ed cars, our teacher told us the AC controls warning sticker was there because the Escort did not automatically turn on the AC when you turned on “Defrost” like all other cars.

    Of course he was wrong, my Nissan didn’t and managed not to have a warning sticker, but that is the only explanation I have ever heard.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    I bought one of these in high school (an ’89, but same color) off some kid who went to a different school for cheap because “the engine was shot”. A set of plugs and wires later, it ran like a top. I sold it shortly after because I already had a winter car, a first gen vulcan Taurus that would blow the doors off the Escort in a drag race.

  • avatar
    -Nate

    This looks better than the same red ’82 Escort two door GL my psycho-b*tch girlfriend had , it was a decent runner and so on but oh so cheap .

    -Nate

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    That sticker came with the car – my 87 Tempo had it, however was meant to be removed. Don’t know if it sealed itself after decades or was attached by choice. If you read the text you can see “pull to remove” on the left tab.

    This was a loved car.

  • avatar
    bertolini

    One of my favorite cars to run at the local dirt track UCAR class. Cheap to obtain, easy to set up and spare parts are plentiful both new and used. Heck here in Appalachia, I see a few still used as daily drivers. (insert meth/demographic joke here…) High school kid up the road from me has 4-5 in his yard for UCAR, figure 8, and demo derby use and swears by them. However as an every day car I can’t comment, never drove one on the street.

  • avatar
    missmySE-R

    A good buddy of mine in high school had one of these in high school, black but without the gaudy GT graphics shown on this model. Fun little off the radar car that held up well to the abuse that my buddy subjected it to regularly. A couple of fun memories about riding in that car:

    The speedometer only went to 85 but you could literally almost completely bury the needle by going 95-ish and having it point straight down. In all likelihood, probably the closest I’ve come to my own untimely demise without realizing it.

    At speed and under heavy braking (perhaps due to worn suspension components allowing too much dive) my buddy found there was a certain amount of brake pressure that would fairly consistently lock the rears only, allowing for some entertaining cornering (when it worked as planned).

    At the edge of our otherwise traditionally residential neighborhood was a small 1/4 mile strip of road that featured a perfect 90 degree bend and was about twice as wide as other roads. Given the near lack of traffic on the roads off hours and perfect sight lines, this was our personal one turn racetrack. We’d compare stories about how fast I could take my dad’s Olds Calais (Iron Duke + 3 spd auto, not the fun ones) vs. his Escort GT. My buddy’s bravery and more capable car continually led to higher top speeds through that corner. At least until one day when he stopped by my house on his bike. When I asked him why he was riding his bike, he simply replied, “I found out you can’t go 65 around that corner”. He ended up sliding sideways over the curb in his GT. I think the car lived to see a few more days after that but that effectively ended that chapter of car ownership for my buddy.

  • avatar
    319583076

    I miss lever-actuated HVAC controls.

    • 0 avatar
      Pig_Iron

      I miss pull and turn headlight switches, and foot-well high beam switches. Oh how very fossiltastic is that making me feel.

    • 0 avatar
      N8iveVA

      What i liked is you could put the air direction where you wanted, say a foot and vent combo, and just press the AC button. Only a few cheap cars do that these days, most require AC to only come out of the vents. :(

  • avatar
    dswilly

    I had a 84 or 85 Escort GT back in 86. Loved the car for the time. It had a nice interior, got great gas mileage and looked decent. I auto crossed it for a few seasons and that really took a toll on it. Mine had the goofy TRX package with the metric rims, buying tires was painful. I ended up putting some 13” wheels on it and used Pirelli P7’s.

  • avatar
    dswilly

    Side note, they made a semi-rare turbo version back in, I think 86. I test drove one and it had the power that the non-turbo really needed.

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      Not ’86 with the 1.9L

      The turbo was in ’85 with the 1.6L engine. No intercooler and not enough modifications to the engine to take the boost – they didn’t live long.

      The Ford EXP got a turbo in ’85 also.

  • avatar
    cargogh

    At least by ’88 the seat belts had reverted back to the non-automatic ones. My friend’s girlfriend had the two-tone gold one from ’86. I never gave it much cred because I was driving a GLH Turbo at the time. Her car took it personally and tried to kill me once when I opened the passenger door and leaned out to spit. In a second the belt was around my neck pinning my face to the A-pillar. I thought it was going to break my spine.

    • 0 avatar
      Felis Concolor

      I witnessed a similar situation when a lady, who drove a new Toyota Cressida with auto-belts, habitually placed the shoulder belt behind her back once it had whirred into position.

      One day, she forgot to restore the belt’s position during a hurried exit from her car. The rapidly retracting belt wrapped around her neck and drug her squawking form back into the car.

    • 0 avatar
      dtremit

      This car has the auto belts — they’re just busted. You can see the tracks if you look carefully at the exterior shot from the front of the car (#12).

  • avatar

    I’ve sung the praises of the Euro Escort many times in these pages. Great car and I dream of buying an 89 XR3 ehtanol like I had back in the day.

    Don’t know why but the American car looks very different. THe headlamps look like the ones in pre 86 Brazilian and Euro models, but the grill is unique. Both the Brazilian and Euro model had a different grill pre 86 and backlights though the interior looked the same. After 86, the car was substantially redesigned and got larger lights, new backlights, new interior and a new grill. Much better looking than the American version, though Escorts after 92 have grills that are closer to the American one.

    One of the great mysteries in car history to me is why Ford USA dropped this car and started basing the Escort on a Mazda for America. By all accounts that Escort, much like the Festiva vis-à´vis the Euro Fiesta, just couldn’t compare. Could it be that American tastes were so different back then? That the Escort was taking sales from larger more profitable Ford America car? Or is it purely economical? During that time Euro currencies did gain against the dollar making local, US production more attractive. If this car was imported from Europe that could be an explanation.

    • 0 avatar
      bumpy ii

      The US-market Escorts were always built locally (US at first and later Mexico). Ford probably figured it was easier to reskin a Mazda than modify the Euro-zone car to US standards.

    • 0 avatar
      dtremit

      “One of the great mysteries in car history to me is why Ford USA dropped this car and started basing the Escort on a Mazda for America.”

      A couple of reasons. First, this car started out as a “global” Escort, and nominally shared a platform with the 3rd-gen Euro Escort, but by the time it actually went into production, there were barely any common parts on the car. The debacle that was that effort frustrated enough people in Dearborn that there was quite a lot of skepticism toward Ford of Europe.

      Second, the European car was more expensive to produce, which made it a hard sell in the US market. Americans have historically been unwilling to pay a premium for a small car, no matter how nice it is, and that was even more the case in the late ’80s. And Ford had the Escort-derived Tempo slotting in right above the Escort, which limited the price at which they could sell the smaller car. (They ran into this same problem a few years later when they replaced the Tempo with the Contour/Mondeo — a discounted Taurus sold for less than a high-trim Contour, in many cases.)

      Finally, Ford had a really good working relationship with Mazda at that time. The Mercury Lynx version of the Escort was replaced in ’87 with a Mazda-derived car called the Tracer, and it was very well received. And Ford had just brought out the Probe (based on the 626), with the second-gen (designed and built as a sister to the MX-6) following in ’93.

      That said, I think you are selling the ’91 Escort short. It was a much better car than the Festiva, and a much better car than it replaced. My father became eligible for a Ford management lease car around that time, and he leased ’91 and ’92 Tracer wagons — they were solid, well-equipped, and economical for his lengthy commute. They did build them a bit too long, though.

    • 0 avatar
      Russycle

      The asymmetrical grill was unique to the GT as I recall, the other models had more normal-looking grill.

      A friend of my mom’s had one of these, in white. Called it their “sports car” and they really enjoyed it.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    “Ford’s first American-built front-wheel-drive compact car was so much better than the miserable Pinto it replaced that it sold in huge quantities.”

    In defense of the Pinto, it also sold in huge quantities, but tapered off at the end of its lifespan as most cars do. But no doubt the Escort was better.

    • 0 avatar

      From everything I read and remember (I lived in the US when the Pinto was sold), the Pinto was head and shoulders over the local competition. Good effort form US Ford. But yes, the Euro Escort outclassed it by miles.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      The Pinto was still selling reasonably well through its final year in 1980. Ford needed to push Pinto sales in order to balance the sales of the huge Lincoln Continental and Mark V, and thus maintain its CAFE averages.

      The main problem was that the Pinto hung around too long. The Honda Civic debuted in 1974 (in this country), followed by the VW Rabbit for 1975 and Chrysler Omni/Horizon for 1978. The front-wheel-drive Escort should have been here by 1978 or 1979.

    • 0 avatar
      FormerFF

      I still wish to this day that instead of having gotten the Pinto, that we got the Mk I Escort that Europe and the UK got.

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        An Escort strangled by emissions controls, detuned for unleaded gas, carrying 350 lbs of crash bumpers, and slapped together by the UAW wouldn’t have been distinguishable from a Pinto.

    • 0 avatar

      I’d say the Pinto was better than the Vega, Chevette, and RWD Colt, probably a tie with the Omnirizon, and much worse than the Corolla and Civic.

      • 0 avatar
        FormerFF

        The first car I had to drive was a ’71 Corolla, which was pleasant enough, and seemed comparable in size to the Pinto. The first gen Civic was teeny and seemed more comparable to the Datsun 1200 than the Pinto.

      • 0 avatar

        in what way? Not really familiar with the Pinto (except for the looks that I liked), but relatively am with versions of the Omnirizon and I liked it. Why would you say the Civic or Corolla were superior?

        I do think the 80s Euro Escort was superior to all these cars and the Golf too. Was the American Escort better than the Civic-Corolla of the time?

        • 0 avatar
          CJinSD

          The Escort was a consolation prize for people too loyal to Detroit to buy superior Toyotas and Hondas. The Corollas were dependable and sturdy when US and European compacts were not and the Civic went from being the class leading subcompact in its second generation to being a futuristic dream car in 1984. The Euro Escorts didn’t have to meet any emissions or crash resistance standards at the time, which certainly helped their performance. The Japanese were already making modern regulatory environment cars though, just ones that also managed to be reliable and mildly fun to drive.

      • 0 avatar
        Russycle

        Omnirizon had more interior room though, the Pinto back seat was a torture chamber. ‘Course, Pinto was an older design.

  • avatar
    Short Bus

    Growing up in small town midwest, where I had never even heard of the Civic Si or Sentra SE-R, this was the car to have. I really wanted one of these but simply couldn’t afford one.

  • avatar
    Ugli

    I had a 1983 Escort GT in about 1992. Qualitatively, it was one of the worst devices ever created by human hands, but it got the job done for a year or so while I finished high school.

    My friends used to love how I could “stir the cauldron” with the manual shifter while it was in any gear. It was vaguer than a CEO speaking at a press conference.

    I punched the HVAC controls when they quit working… again… on the coldest day of the winter. I wound up supergluing a bunch of broken shards back together to approximate the original plastic control panel.

    I miss some of the cars I’ve owned, but certainly not that one.

  • avatar

    I put a Lincoln V8 in the back seat of mine. http://www.news4u.me/printmag/how-i-roll/how-i-roll-may-2013/

  • avatar
    DubTee1480

    My mother had an 86 Escort Coupe with a Mazda sourced diesel engine. She caused many a panic at the filling station before she traded it in on a 94 Plymouth Grand Voyager. Didn’t win any drag races but when it was finally at speed it would fly, I’m told she once broke 100 mph when one of us were sick.

  • avatar
    sitting@home

    The company I worked for in the early 90′s had a white GT as the company car. It was really mistreated and the A/C didn’t work. Someone had sideswiped the front door which caused the door to unlatch whenever you rolled the window down … which you often did because the A/C didn’t work.

  • avatar
    Superdessucke

    Sweet! Remember test driving this thing’s successor in ’89 along with the Shadow ES turbo and Cavalier Z24 (more expensive). Now it’s old n’ crusty.

    FWIW, this is an early ’88. The Escort was restyled half way through the model year and labeled an ’88.5. That’s the version I drove. It looked similar but had different taillights and a slightly revised front nose.

  • avatar
    IHateCars

    I wonder if this was originally a Canadian market car? I didn’t think that US cars would have to have labels in both official Canadian langages (English & French).

    • 0 avatar
      APaGttH

      No. This is a standard label and was supposed to be removed by the buyer. If you look you’ll see “pull to remove” on the sticker. Through its whole life, no one bothered to pull it off. The tag would have been used in US and Canada.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    Miles? I can see in one of the pics it had its instrument cluster still.

  • avatar
    gessvt

    This brings back memories. We had one in ’86, the year I got my drivers license. I too slid the GT sideways into a square curb, but at 40 MPH. The suspension did not like that impact.

    In college I bought an ’83 GT with the Marchal fog lamps, fake Recaros and TRX wheels. In red, it was quite the cool looking car. You know what they say about the fun that can be had driving a slow car fast…

    I had an ’87 EXP Sport in college as well. A two seat Escort that somehow managed to be heavier than the 4 seat version. It was so slow I dubbed it the Road Rocket. The police never gave it a second glance if I redlined through all the gears.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      Ahh the EXP, the Ford CRX. There’s a model you just don’t see anymore.

      • 0 avatar
        LALoser

        I bought an ’82 new. 4M IIRC. 5M not out yet. Great car UNTIL the carburetor started acting up. Never was right after that.

      • 0 avatar
        APaGttH

        My first car was a 1985 Ford EXP. All 82 HP of flaming fury.

        The three pluses I can tell you:

        1) Had the utility of a CUV/SUV. That bubble back hatch could swallow a stunning amount of cargo.

        2) Great fuel economy, 40+ MPG in the days of 55 MPH was easily obtained

        3) Unstoppable in the snow. With 68% of the weight over the front wheels, giving the EXP I believe the worst F/R weight ratio of any passenger car ever built, the EXP could not be stopped in the snow.

        That’s it. The car was understeer defined, noisy, coarse, vague shifter of epic horror (and since I learned to drive manual on the Ford 5-speed, nothing, I mean nothing feels vague to me in comparison), flimsy, under braked, under tired, and prone to rust on the rear fender wells and the bubble back hatch. Despite having just 82 HP, the torque steer was equally epic when you launched in a fit of rage.

        In some bizarre sick and twisted way, I miss the car very much. I saw a 1982 in road worthy condition about 3 months ago – with a ’85 hatch on the back as the notch back had rusted out (so the owner told me). They had purchased it for $400. Had my fiance and I not been smack dab in the middle of buying a house, I would have offered $1K right there on the spot for it.

    • 0 avatar
      Superdessucke

      True Escort geeks will remember the Escort GT and EXP turbos that were produced in 1984 and half of 1985. Now those were rare! And cool.

  • avatar
    Veee8

    Worst car I ever owned. I got a lemon.

    Bought one of these used in the early 90′s (this might even be it, ha!) – seemed decent enough in the test drive so I laid down the cash…then the gremlins showed up, it had more error codes than was known to man.
    After a few weeks the front tie rod broke mid corner, thankfully in town and not on the highway.
    Stalled whenever the AC was turned on or just when it felt like not running anymore.
    It left me stranded for the last time with my girlfriend (now my wife) and nieces in car after a trip back from the zoo, should’ve left it there and let the animals have at it.
    Sold it promptly to some poor soul and bought a very sweet 1991 CRX Si – best car I ever owned!!

  • avatar
    Conslaw

    Murilee, please take some pictures if you find a junkyard 1983 Mercury Lynx wagon. I’m trying to remember if it had the horn on the stalk and the tiny single side mirror.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    I saw these everywhere when I was in grade school. Never owned one, but I learned enough in my life to know these were turd grade from the word go and wouldn’t take one if it was free with no miles.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    I always liked the GT for the asymmetrical slats grille. I thought these were very stylish growing up. I also recall thinking the Escort was a trim level of the Dodge Spirit/Shadow because they had the same rear end.

    Also I might add, that later on I’d see this style of Ford steering wheel, and think they were a very early car with an airbag.

  • avatar
    stevelovescars

    These were pretty ubiquitous in the Detroit ‘burbs when I was in high school. The kids of Ford execs seemed to all drive these. I was pretty jealous at the time, as my mother’s 1982 Buick Skyhawk (J-body)could only muster about 85 hp to its 3-speed auto.

    Ford interiors, in general, seemed so much more sporty and euro-cool than the low-buck garbage GM was mustering at the time. I don’t think I ever drove an Escort GT back then but always thought the seats alone made them a worthy upgrade over the base cars.

    These were not only a big upgrade to the Pinto but any Escort seemed a better option than the slightly larger Tempo, which was likely one of the most unpleasant crap piles to drive I ever rented back then.

    Amazing to think that before this article I had forgotten that those ever existed. It’s been decades since I’ve seen one on the road.

    • 0 avatar
      Russycle

      Good point, GM interiors of the 80s were horrific amalgamations of velour, vinyl, and plastichrome parts-bin scrimshaw. Ford designers were doing a much better job.

  • avatar
    bnolt

    I had an 86, bought new, in white. I gave it to my daughter’s boyfriend in 99 at 240k miles, and I think he drove it another 10k after that. Two clutches, and I had the valve seals replaced when the head gasket went at around 150k. Other than that it liked to eat tie rod ends. Better then average quality for an American subcompact of the era and it handled quite well.

  • avatar
    N8iveVA

    My first new car was an ’86 Escort GT. Man i loved that car. Lots of fun for the time period. Ran great until 88K miles when i fell asleep at the wheen and “totaled” it on a tree. Insurance totaled. I saw it later on, someone had straightened it out and got it back on the road.

  • avatar
    TheyBeRollin

    Back when I was a teenager in the late 90s and early 00s, these were pretty popular first cars among my peers that had to buy their own cars. Not GT variants, which probably still commanded some money, but just the run-of-the-mill ones that could be purchased for under a grand.

    The main thing I remember about them was that they broke timing belts periodically. Many of us had never seen such a thing before this, so it was very surprising. Considering the cleanliness of this car, I wonder if that sent this one to the junkyard. Losing a timing belt on a car that has depreciated to practically nothing for someone without the skills and tools to fix it is a death sentence…

  • avatar
    v8corvairpickup

    I think this is really a 1986 or 1987 Escort GT. The rear of the 1988 was changed slightly. The taillights and rear window on the 85.5 to 87 were the same as in the above junkyard find. I’m an Escort geek, admittedly. I had an 85.5 Escort L.

  • avatar
    Jimal

    I was the low man on the totem pole at a small Ford dealer right after these came out. Among my low man tasks at this dealer was performing the emissions and safety recalls on these. The emissions recalls involved replacing color coded vacuum regulators with other color coded vacuum regulators under the hood. The main safety recall involved the seat brackets, which had a tendency to break in these cars. If a car came in with a completely broken seat track, you’d replace the track. If the track was just cracked, Ford produced this bracket piece that you would bolt down using the existing seat bolt, then drill through and pop-rivet to hold the track together. Bet you that car has at least one of those brackets installed.

  • avatar
    Maverick74

    My dad had a ’90 Escort GT in the late ’90′s/ early 2000′s, and it was one of the first cars I learned to drive. I also was almost my first car. Dad had planned on giving it to me, but at the time I wanted nothing to do with a newer, FWD hatchback, and bought a incredibly rusting and totally used up Maverick instead. He later sold it to a classmate of mine for $110, who drove it for several years. Looking back, it was probably quite stupid of me not taking it, it was better than my car in every measure-able way, and apart from a poor sealing hatch that yet a lot of dust in, I really don’t recall my dad or my classmate ever having any issues with it.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    1st gen Escorts 81-89 had their share of issues. My sister had an 81 2dr 4 spd she bought in 1983. Ran fine for a while till the problems cropped up. Head gasket, clutch throwout bearing, drive axles etc. And the weird counterintuitive horn on the stalk. Many French cars had this. Sacre Bleu!

    Later 1st gen and 2nd gen Mazda based were far superior. GT W/ 16V were the best of the lot. Ford also based the Aussie Capri off of the 323. I had once considered a late 99-02 ZX2 coupe. These came with the 2.0 Duratec, same as the Contour but went for another T-Bird.

  • avatar
    shaker

    A black ’90 GT 5-spd was my first new car – since the ’91 was coming out, I got the car for $9,999. A decent car, nice interior, most of the bugs worked out of the design (but not decontented like they would do today). Built in New Jersey.
    I sold it to a buddy with 56,000 on it (I was moving “up” to a ’97 Camaro), and he beat it into the ground with a 100-mile daily commute – I think he had to put a fuel pump in it after he ran out of gas.
    At some point, it died (reason forgotten), but it was sad to see it sitting in a patch of overgrowth behind his house.

  • avatar
    JayDub

    For a year, while attending Michigan State University, I had this identical vehicle as a cheap used car…Until I destroyed it.

    One cold night, while driving back from an early evening business class with two buddies, I surprised them by pulling into our local pub and buying a pitcher of beer. We then drove the final 1/2 block to our house. I kept the car running in our back lot, in order to warm the engine a bit. Or perhaps I was just stopping in our house to use the bathroom, before heading over to my girlfriend’s place. I forget.

    When I went inside (with my car still idling), our housemate Rob aggressively approached me and stated in his most authoritative voice – “I need to see you upstairs. Immediately.”

    I cautiously proceeded upstairs to Rob’s back room. He sat me down on the sofa. I had no clue what was about to happen. Out of nowhere, two old friends surprised the hell out of me by jumping out of Rob’s closet while holding giant Bob Marley joints. Hours later, I stumbled down the hall to my own room and passed out.

    In the morning, I awoke for my 8AM advertising class. For the life of me, I was unable to find my damn car keys. I headed downstairs, still frantically searching for my keys. I then see my other housemate Tim (who I am supposed to drive to our mutual advertising class).

    Tim’s first words: “Boy, you were sure up early this morning. Did you go exercise or something? I heard your car running at first light!”

    The car had been running all night.

    Until the engine seized.

    o_0

  • avatar
    amca

    I had an ’87 Escort GT. Black. Got it in ’91, and beat the crap out of it for 5 years. I loved it. Big meaty tires and flinty-hard springs. Handled like a go-kart.

    Best part were the economics. I bought it from a friend who worked for Ford for $3900. About a year before I got rid of it, it got hit while parked. I got $3200 from insurance. Then I sold it for $400 after a hard life parked on the streets of the South Side of Chicago. Towed 4 times, I don’t know how many broken windows (less than $100 to replace), all four wheels stolen once. Real ghetto car.

    But I loved it.

    And the only time it actually wouldn’t run, it conked out with enough momentum to allow me to coast safely into a closed toll booth where I waited for a tow. That’s what I call a quality car.

    • 0 avatar
      amca

      Can I just add another story: I took the GT to a Jamaican mechanic before I bought it. There was a small clunking noise in one of the front struts. When asked about it, the mechanic uttered the immortal words: “Ya, mon, ‘dis no Cad-i-lac.”

  • avatar
    Eric the Red

    Back in the early 90′s I worked for Ford Credit in the “Customer Service Department” aka mostly collections. We collected hard on this guy with a Escort GT and was to the point of repoing. Account had been assigned to a Repo Agent several times with no luck.
    My wife was asked to be the Maid of Honor for a friend of hers from high school. I generally did not pay much attention to the details but lo and behold the groom turned out to be the Customer/Owner of the Escort GT.
    My fellow Ford Credit employees pushed me hard to repo the car but I just could not do it on their wedding day with my Wife in the wedding. I did take some nice pictures of it with the decorations on it.
    Evidently the wedding presents/money was enough to bring the payments current and eventually he did pay it off.
    That would have been classic repoing the car from the church during the ceremony!!!

  • avatar
    chicagoland

    This is an early 1988, with the older rear end. 1988 1/2 got the newer tails. Reason for using the same model year designation was to apply CAFE credits for whole ’88 line.


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