Jim Smart
June 1, 2000
Photos By: Tom Rounds

It's impossible to believe that the older Saleen Mustangs are entering the ranks of classics, but consider this: The '79-'93 Mustangs are now where the '65-'73 Mustangs were in the '80s. They are older cars with a committed following. It used to be you could pick up an old Shelby Mustang for two grand, but that probably won't happen with an old Saleen. These limited-production, high-performance rides have held their value even better than a vintage Shelby did at the same age. Shelby Mustangs, of course, have surpassed Saleens in value, if for no other reason than age and availability, but they aren't as plentiful today as they were in the '70s.

This is a '90 Saleen Mustang convertible decked out in black with striking gold appointments. At the tender age of 10, this gem is a rolling time capsule that offers a glimpse of life as it was in 1990. Drop the top to a factory lightbar, bucket seats, abundant leather, and awesome entertainment. Carol Peters understands what it's like to saddle up with a Saleen. There's the deep, throaty roar of 5.0L H.O. power with some Saleen warm-up tricks in store. Grab the five-speed shifter and get with the program. Roar through First. Blast through Second. Head for cruising altitude in Third and Fourth. Lie back and cruise in Fifth down the super slab. Attack a canyon road with passion. Grind away at the asphalt with a super-sticky set of Bridgestone Potenzas. Whirl the rubber about the place with color-keyed American five-spokes. This is definitely about reliving more modern memories in the abundant '90s.

Carol snapped up this convertible in 1997 from the original owner in Richland, Washington. At the time, it was in show condition with low mileage. The original factory options included radar detection, subframe connectors, a lightbar, an alarm system, and attitude. Super-low 3.55 Traction-Lok rearend gears give the 5.0L five-speed combo added thrust from a standstill, enabling fast starts and economical cruising.

What may surprise the vintage Mustang following is Carol's decision to sell both a '68 Mustang GT convertible and a '69 Mach 1 to finance the Saleen purchase. All in all, it was not a bad deal. Carol gained a rock-and-roll ride in this mean Saleen.