Muscle Car Drive

1987 Ford Mustang GT

1987 mustang gt

The 1987 Ford Mustang was a car that received major changes in styling and a huge increase in horsepower. Ford was now in a new muscle car war with the General Motors Camaro, Pontiac Firebird and a few turbo Chrysler products.

The 302 cid, or 5.0 liter, high output motor powering the Mustang GT is a cornerstone of small block Ford engine production. The 1987 engine is mostly a carryover from the 1986 version of the 5.0 HO with the addition of better heads and better flowing intake system.

During 1987 the engine features forged pistons with valve relief's, roller camshaft with 260 degrees of duration, tuned sequential fuel injection with one injector for each intake port, and tubular exhaust headers.

The heads on the high output motor originally came from the truck production line and are noted with the part prefix E7TE. These heads were ideal for creating torque and low lift flow.

When matched with a hot camshaft, bigger intake system featuring 60mm throttle body the result was a 25 horsepower increase of the 1986 model. Total power was 225hp and an honest 300 foot pounds of torque. The high torque engine was controlled by the newly designed EEC-IV electronic system.

1987 Mustang 5.0 Engine

The suspension on the 1987 Mustang GT showed minor improvements over years past as the front end received larger 10.84 inch brakes and the use of new spindles and struts to improve the geometry. All GT's featured large sway bars front and rear and were reported to handle adequately compared to their competition. Interestingly, buyers who opted for a V-8 in the LX model also received the GT style suspension.

1987 Mustang GT

Exterior treatments were quite different in 1987. A new front end featuring flush mounted headlamps and round fog lights was standard on the GT version. GT's also featured a ground effects package which included a rear wing, rocker panel moldings, and a front chin spoiler. Also, GT's came with newly designed turbine style four bolt rims in size 15 by 7 inch and louvered taillights. LX models did not have ground effects and included standard tail lamps and carryover 10 hole aluminum wheels from the 1986 model. This was also the final year for T-tops to be available on the Mustang.

The interior of the 1987 Mustang was all new from previous models. The dash was entirely new and featured a large 7000rpm tach, large speedometer, and four other small gauges. Newly styled push pull switches for headlamps, window defrosters, and hazard lights were installed. The HVAC controls were also new designs featuring a modern large dial design. For the first time buyers were able to purchase a premium sound system featuring graphic equalizer. The pedals were redesigned for heel-toe shifting and a footrest was installed for the shifting leg on the floorboard. Interior colors were red, beige, or medium gray.

1987 Mustang Interior

Performance in the new Mustang was very good overall. Despite much criticism of poor braking and the need for a more rigid rear suspension the car handled respectably on the track delivering 0.85g's and 64mph in a 700ft slalom. Where the car really showed strength was in acceleration. Bone stock mustangs achieved easy 14 second quarter mile times at 97+mph. Once Mustangs received better gearing and sticky tires they ran 13 second quarter mile times. In fact, many racers achieved 12 second quarter mile times while using completely stock engines. The success of this car was related to it's incredible torque and the ability to respond to simple bolt on performance parts.

1987 Ed Hohenberg stock eliminator efi mustang

The 1987 Mustang GT truly was the cornerstone of the third generation Mustang. To many Ford enthusiasts this Mustang was responsible for revitalizing the pony car image as well as spawning the "bolt-on" era. Within a few years thousands of readily and inexpensive bolt on performance parts were available for the Mustang.

1987 mustang lx

1987 mustang convertible

Models: GT, LX, convertible


1987 Mustang GT Specifications


Engine 5.0L (302cid) OHC V8 (iron block- 2 Valve Heads sequential fuel injection
Displacement 302 cid
Horsepower 225 @ 4000
Torque 300 @ 3000
Compression 9.5.1 to 1
Fuel Premium (91+ octane)
Exhaust aluminumized steel. LX models featured chrome tips
Transmission 5 speed T-5 or 4 speed automatice AOD
Final drive ratio 2.76:1 , 3.08:1. 3.27:1 (automatic)


Front Independent, modified MacPherson strut with Separate spring on lower arm and stabilizer bar
Front springs Helical coil, rubber-insulated
Rear Four-bar link with coil springs on lower arm
Rear springs Helical coil, rubber-insulated
Rear shocks gas pressurized hydraulic (4 shocks in total)
Sway bars front: 26.5 mm, rear 23mm
Steering power assisted rack and pinion with 15.3:1 ratio
Front brakes 10.84 inch rotors
Rear brakes 9 inch drums
Wheels 15 by 7 Turbine styled aluminum wheels / LX versions received the 15 by 7 inch ten hole aluminum wheels
Tires 225/60ZR15 Goodyear Eagle

Interior Dimensions

Head Room (Fr/Rr): 38.1/35.5
Leg Room (Fr/Rr): 42.6/29.9
Shoulder Room (Ft/Rr): 53.6/52.1
Hip Room (Ft/Rr): 52.8/47.4

Exterior Dimensions & Weight

Curb Weight: 3160 lbs
Wt. Dist.: 59/41
Wheelbase(Ft/Rr): 100.5
Track (Ft/Rr): 56.6/57.0
Length: 179.3
Width: 69.1
Height: 52.1

Capacity & Volume

Cargo Volume (EPA/Mfr): 11/10.9
Fuel Capacity: 15.4 gal
Seating (Std.): 5
Seating (Opt.): NA

Consumer Information

Assembly Plant Dearborn MI, USA
Air bags N/A
Price $12,145 - $14,250


Quarter Mile 14.4 @ 96 mph
0-60mph 6.1 seconds
Skidpad 0.83 g's
Top speed 145 mph



47,539 (GT)

Colors Black
Bright Regatta Blue Metallic
Dark Clove Metallic
Dark Gray Metallic
Dark Shadow Blue Metallic
Light Gray Medium Cabernet
Medium Shadow Blue Metallic
Medium Yellow
Oxford White
Sand Beige
Scarlet Red


1986 Mustang Top

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