Author Topic: What does it cost to restore a classic 1960s mustang?  (Read 42182 times)


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What does it cost to restore a classic 1960s mustang?
« on: September 28, 2009, 12:38:43 AM »
If I was to buy a classic mustang that didn't run and had a ok but not good interior, what would you estimate the price to restore it to be (approx)? What are some approximate prices from other peoples jobs? where was the car when you started and how much did you spend? Where was it when you were done?


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Re: What does it cost to restore a classic 1960s mustang?
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2009, 07:29:09 AM »
Depends on the body, how much of the work you are going to do yourself, and what type of restoration you are talking about.  I can tell you that I bought my '66 for $2,000, and I have put about $3,000 into it on interior and mechanical only (keep in mind this is only part costs, and I have done the labor).  Now I am getting into the body, and I am guessing that is going to be another $4,000 for the bodywork and paint job.

If I were to do it over again I would have bought something that needed more mechanical work than body work (just because I feel more comfortable doing that stuff).  Some key areas to check when you are buying one are the underside of the cowl (have to get on your back and look at the metal that comes out from the top of the firewall--65-66 are notorious for rust issues there), obviously the frame should not have rust issues, floor pans, and trunk floor pans.

If you are looking to make money on one of these things then I doubt you will.  I will be lucky to break even on my little project.  But, if you are looking to fulfill a childhood dream then who cares.  I am kind of glad I didn't buy mine with everything done already.  Gives you a different sense of pride.


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Re: What does it cost to restore a classic 1960s mustang?
« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2009, 10:15:43 AM »
How much can you spend? all of that and then some.. Its allot more then it used to be to fix up old cars thats for sure. I spent a whole lot more on my car then I should have (especially for what its worth)
Depends allot on what you start out with. There are some nice cars up for sale these days. Deals to be had. That helps.


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Re: What does it cost to restore a classic 1960s mustang?
« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2009, 03:15:30 PM »
There are two main factors to determine the cost. The condition of the car, and how far you want to go with the restore. Once those are determined then you can get a ball park price.


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Re: What does it cost to restore a classic 1960s mustang?
« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2009, 06:00:54 PM »
Here's what I have found so far. I have a 66 coupe, very good body, built 302 w/ a C4 and all new chrome auto. So far I have approx. $6000 in it. I'm looking at another $2000 mechanically and then paint which will be $2-4000. Then it should be a dependable, stock looking 66. I set a limit at $15,000 to complete. At this time it looks like I'll come under budget, but with countless hours of sweat equity. The key is, I found a really good base mustang. With theeconomy as it is it will take longer to complete.

Tim is right. You need to know where you are starting from and where you want to go. I am trying to do a build on a budget and do it right. There are so many neat parts a person can get carried away very easily.


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Re: What does it cost to restore a classic 1960s mustang?
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2009, 04:34:25 PM »
I have told several people over the years that a restored car will cost roughly $20,000 no matter what you start with.  This is of course an oversimplification, but I use it as bot a way to explain that the better the car you start with the cheaper the restoration will be.  Keep in mind that getting the car to where you can drive it and do so reliably is a big part of the fun.  Doing it yourself is great, but if you have a full time job and a family, 2-3 years of all of your spare time can make a restoration project less than fun.

Avoid rust whenever an wherever possible. Drivelines are relatively inexpensive compared to rust repair.  Even completely rewiring a car is cheap compared to rust repair.

The final advice I would give is buy a car that you want, not a second choice.  It may take a year or more to find the car that will fit the bill, but thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours into a project, you don't want to see your dream car sitting across the street for sale and all your working capital invested in a second best car.

If you want a 69 do not settle for a 68-you will never be happy.


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Re: What does it cost to restore a classic 1960s mustang?
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2009, 12:18:18 PM »
As stated, it depends on where you start and where you want to go. If you are doing the work yourself you will save a bunch, but few people can do all including paint and body work. In my experience a solid basic car that has few rust issues with some slight mechanicals such as brakes, wiring, and needing interior redone, minor body work and needing a nice paint job will be in the 5-10000 range for a basic job, and this can climb quickly to 20K+ if major parts are needed or the vehicle is a rust bucket. One important point is to start with something that is worth what the final cost is. If you put 15K in a 6 cyl coupe, you'll have a vehicle that you will have trouble geting your money out of, if you choose to sell. If it was grandpa's car then it is a personal thing. If you are planning to have someone do the work get estimates and referals. Sometimes finding one that has already been done right, for a fair price is the way to go.

Another way to determine the cost, double or triple what you told your wife..

Holdover, 65 289/271 FB 4 speed: 67 390 FB GT 4 speed: 92 FB 302 5 speed



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