Jim Smart
July 1, 2004

When Ford redesigned the Mustang for 1987, the car was clearly different in every way. It had bitchin' ground effects, a new hood, composite headlamps, a grille air intake close to the ground, fluted taillights on the GT, an all-new instrument panel, and a new 8.8-inch Traction-Lok rear axle. Combined with the 5.0L V-8, the '87 Mustang opened the corral on a new generation of exciting, hot-performing Mustangs from Ford.

While we certainly like the '87-'93 Mustangs, they really didn't change during their seven-year run. Some say the car became downright boring and predictable. But toward the end of production, Ford played around with the car considerably. In 1992, it tried a showroom stimulator called the "Feature Car," a Vibrant Red convertible dressed in white leather with white five-spoke wheels. The campaign was so successful that Ford kept it going for 1993-in Vibrant White with white wheels or Canary Yellow with chrome wheels.

Also in 1993 came SVT's first project, the Mustang Cobra, an upscale, factory performance car. What made the SVT Cobra more exciting was its 5.0L GT40 engine with 1.7:1 roller rockers, a Cobra induction system, 24-pound injectors, and exhaust headers to develop 235 hp. Stopping power came from four-wheel disc brakes behind 17-inch, seven-spoke wheels wrapped in Goodyear Eagles. A World Class T5 five-speed and 3.73:1 Traction-Lok were both earmarks of a high-performance Mustang

Jean and Alan Anderson of the Pacific Northwest understand the rush of adrenaline that goes hand-in-hoof with these limited-production Mustangs. Nearly 10 years after these cars galloped into Ford showrooms, Alan and Jean decided they had to have one of each: a '93 Feature Car and a '93 Cobra. Collectibles have their distinction because people have to have them.

Ford built Jean's Canary Yellow Feature Car on June 29, 1993, just in time for serious summer fun with the top down amid all that white leather. Beneath the finish is the 5.0L H.O. coupled to the AOD transmission. Jean and Alan purchased it from a Mustang enthusiast in McComb, Illinois, thousands of miles away from their home in western Washington. It was well worth the trip because the odometer reads just 16,500 miles. Today, Jean's Feature Car remains an outstanding example of what you could buy new a decade ago from Ford.

Alan's Vibrant Red SVT Cobra captured our attention because we've always liked these cars. When we were road-testing them as eager magazine guys a decade ago, we had a ball. They were solid, predictable, powerful handlers. Of all the SVT Cobras, they remain a personal favorite. At first glance, we knew Alan's Cobra, No. 4993, was a low-mileage time capsule with only 2,845 original miles. It's loaded, with all the trimmings, and a little unusual because it has fabric seats instead of leather.

Built on February 19, 1993, Alan's Cobra was purchased by the original owner as a show car that ultimately went into permanent storage. These are the stories we love to tell in Mustang Monthly. They inspire our readers, who hope to find cars like these on eBay.

For Alan and Jean, finding these cars was more than an Internet-auction experience. They pounded the streets for these cars that most of us can only dream of owning.