As prices continue to rise on older Mustangs many enthusiasts are looking for future collectibles among later generation Mustangs. The great news about many of these third and fourth generation Mustangs is that supplies are relatively plentiful and prices are still reasonable.
An added benefit of the Fox body Mustangs is that they make great daily drivers. You can own a special Mustang and enjoy it everyday. Even if you sell the car before prices escalate you’ll still have the fun experiences to remember. Bought correctly these cars can provide almost depreciation-proof transportation. They may never be worth a hundred thousand dollars, but they’re still a worthwhile investment.
Some of the most obvious future collectibles include the various Cobra, SVT and SVO Mustangs, but there are many other unique Mustangs out there. Many of these cars are as much about their unique styling touches as what is under the hood. Even so the basic 5.0-liter LX and GT packages were always excellent performers in their base configuration. And, it’s easy to enhance performance and still be able to return the car to factory stock specs at a later date.
Our spotlight car is commonly known as the Mustang Summer Special Edition. It’s based on a 1992 Mustang LX convertible with the sport equipment package.
The Summer Special Edition convertibles were produced two years after the better-known 1990 “7-Up” convertibles. Those cars were all green with white interiors and white convertible tops. The 7-Up cars and the Summer Editions used the same basic philosophy—start with a stock 5.0-liter LX convertible and add unique paint and trim. The cars were available with either a 5-speed manual transmission or a 4-speed automatic.
The unique paint on the 1992 Summer Edition cars is known as Vibrant Red. The color was aptly named and was only available on the Summer Special Edition cars. The A-pillars were body-colored, as were the rearview mirrors and window moldings. Pearl white wheels offered a strong contrast to the brilliant red paint. The white wheels used a baked finish over the factory silver spokes.
A rear deck spoiler took the place of the standard LX luggage rack. The interiors were fitted with white leather upholstery that includes the door panels. The front seats used black piping for contrast. The dashboard and carpet were black. A black headliner was used inside the white canvas soft top. This was the first Fox Mustang to receive a headliner.
The best current information puts production of the 1992 Summer Special Edition convertibles at 2,193 units. There is a body tag located on the driver’s side core support behind the headlamp. This body tag should have the word “FEATURE” stamped on it.
To be a genuine 1992 Mustang Summer Special Edition car the vehicle must be a ’92 LX with the Vibrant Red paint, white leather interior and the all-important “FEATURE” body tag. Beyond that there are several items to be aware of when trying to find the best possible Summer Special.
• Factory paint is notoriously thin. The front and rear fascias and rear spoiler tend to discolor at a different rate than the main sheetmetal. Watch for repaints on high mileage cars.
• Factory leather upholstery is prone to cracking and splitting. The front seat foam loses its shape and support. The foam is much easier and less expensive to repair than the leather.
• White top and pearl white wheels are difficult to keep clean. Check for overly neglected, hard to refurbish damage.
• These cars have all the normal Fox Mustang “issues” including yellowing headlamps, rust inside the trunk lid, rusty lower door edges, broken ash tray lids, slipping AOD automatic transmissions, and non-functioning power windows and power locks.
• Avoid cars with modifications that involve cutting the dashboard or body panels.
• Only buy a car with all the special components.
The 1992 Mustang Summer Special Edition convertible is a limited production appearance package Mustang that has merit as a future collectible, but can provide great driving fun today.
The contrasting pearl white wheels and white canvas top help make the Vibrant Red paint really pop. Note that the windshield “A” pillars and rear view mirrors are painted body color.
The white leather with black piping bucket seats is part of the Summer Special Edition package. These white seats tend to show cracks more than other colors. The cracks are noticeable on our example car, but they’re not terrible. The passenger seat is in better condition.
The rear seat doesn’t have the distinctive black piping that the front seats have.
The standard 5.0-liter V-8 resides under the hood. The engine can be mated to either a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic transmission. The 5-speed cars are more desirable.
To be a real Summer Special the body tag must say “FEATURE” as seen here on the middle right side of the tag.
The Summer Special Edition cars used this handsome rear deck spoiler instead of the luggage rack found on regular LX convertibles.
The five-spoke mags feature a baked pearl white finish. Watch out for stained or chipped wheels.
The front and rear fascias and rear spoiler often fade to a noticeably different shade of red than the rest of the car. Our example car has an excellent match between the parts.
The rear 3/4 view of the 1992 Mustang Summer Special Edition cars is clean and simple thanks to the body-colored components and contrasting white wheels and top.