Junkyard Find: 1988 Ford Escort GT

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
junkyard find 1988 ford escort gt
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. 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 GT s 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.
It looks much like a contemporary Fox Mustang, which was a pretty quick car by the last 1980s.
The 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?
There must be a story behind this afterthought-looking warning sticker on the HVAC controls.
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  • Eric the Red Eric the Red on Jun 24, 2014

    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!!!

  • Chicagoland Chicagoland on Jun 26, 2014

    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.

  • Tassos And all 3 were ordered by Fisker's mother. Seriously, given Fisker's terrible record of Failure in the past, only an utter loser, (for example, VGhost or Art Vandelay?), looking for a BEV terrible enough to be a proper replacement of his 11 mile range Fiat 500E, would order one of these. (apart from Fisker's mother)
  • Tassos And all 3 of them were ordered by Fisker's mother.Seriously, after Fisker's DISMAL record of UTTER FAILURE in the past, only a GOD DAMNED MORON would order this one.
  • RHD Any truth to the unconfirmed rumor that the new, larger model will be called the bZ6X? We could surmise that with a generous back seat it certainly should be!
  • Damon Thomas Adding to the POSITIVES... It's a pretty fun car to mod
  • GregLocock Two adjacent states in Australia have different attitudes to roadworthy inspections. In NSW they are annual. In Victoria they only occur at change of ownership. As you'd expect this leads to many people in Vic keeping their old car.So if the worrywarts are correct Victoria's roads would be full of beaten up cars and so have a high accident rate compared with NSW. Oh well, the stats don't agree.https://www.lhd.com.au/lhd-insights/australian-road-death-statistics/