North American Turbocoupe Organization



Which TC?
Noname
Guest
#1
Okay, I am looking to buy a TC for alternative transportation to my Ranger. I love my Ranger, but I drive about 50mi a day, and 700mi round trip every other weekend or so. I need something that will get better gas milage, and be reliable, allowing me to park my Ranger except for driving in bad weather. I'm not gonna buy a stinkin' import, and I don't want to get run over on on-ramps. So, I've decided to find a TC. I have been around Mustangs all my life (my folks have owned 12 '85's) and I have owned several mid 80's cars and trucks, so I have a pretty good understanding of how the beasts work, but I have fairly limited knowledge about the year by year changes in the TC's. Personally I like the styling of the '83-'86 cars, but I don't know how they stand up as far as strength and reliability. I know there is no "best" TC, they're all great, I just would like to get an idea of what to keep an eye out for. Any of your thoughts and opinions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Don

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Not TC owner ... but long time fan ... currently looking for TC.

Forever Ford Owner

'86 Ranger STX 4x4
'72 Ranchero 351C (for sale)
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Walsted Offline
Posting Freak
#2
I assume that you have read all of the FAQ's and others will have more to add to this thread, but here is a start.

I've written down pretty much everything of significance that has happened to my TC since I bought it on my web page. If you are looking for what all can be wrong on a TC, that is a good start. Hope it is helpful.

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Mike Walsted - Nato member
1986 5-speed TurboCoupe .
Mike Walsted - Sold my 1986 5-speed TurboCoupe
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Pete D Offline
Administrator
#3
Also see the "Specs" pages in the "Technical Articles". The 83-86 would probably get a little better mpgs as they had less power and were a little lighter. My 86 was good for 30+ on the highway, but I have never gotten better than 25-26 with my 88s. The earlier ones don't have the PRC or the ABS so those kinds of repairs could be cheaper.

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NATO Member
88 TC X 2, 86 SVO, Main TC with K&N, 3"DP to 2.5"duals through Dynamax, Ric valve at 17+ and disconnected KS.
Elite Bodega 16" chrome wheels. Autometer pod w/ A/F and Vac/boost gauges.140 mph Motorsports Speedo New engine: Total Seal rings and TRW pistons, ported and polished head w/ cc'd chambers,1.59"exhausts, SS valves, gutted upper, knife edged lower, A-230 cam, Race Engineering Adj Cam Sprocket, Crowlers, ARP head studs, and rod bolts. Walbro 255 HP pump and Kirban adj FPR, T-3. Centerforce II, KB subs and jack rails.
Pete Dunham


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Birdman78758 Offline
Senior Member
#4
Wasting time at the end of the day at work again. My comments -

(1) We all LOVE our cars but it might be described as a love/hate relationship for all of us at some point in time. These are the best passenger cars Ford's ever designed but they aren't cheap to keep going and sometimes parts are difficult to locate.

(2) Even though they're 4-bangers they're also not known for their gas mileage. As to "reliable" that depends upon your definition ... LMAO.

(3) IMO the best is the 87/88 since it was at the end of the design cycle and so everything was done right that they wanted to do from the beginning but never had a chance to. All the earlier years owners are (usually) always trying to upgrade to the 87/88 mods so why not just start with one of those?

(4) How much of a shade-tree mechanic are you?

(5) "Forever Ford" - best signature yet.

(6) NATO is the best group of people (both guys and gals) for support on these cars anywhere (including Ford). Be sure and join!
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segfaultxr7 Offline
Posting Freak
#5
I'll second what Birdman said. If you just want some kind of no-fuss, dependable car that you don't have to bother with, do not--DO NOT--get a TC. The basic drivetrain is very reliable, but they like to break a lot of little things. Usually nothing major, but you can bet on being out poking around under the hood fairly often trying to chase down a miss, stumble, idle problem, etc. The 87-88s apparently solved a lot of drivability issues due to computer upgrades (especially the 88) but they are still far from perfect.

Despite having broken down on me twice in the past week and a half (ignition module and timing belt), I love my TC. Other than those two incidents, it has been very reliable. And the people on this board are incredibly helpful--chances are if you ask a question regarding some sort of problem, 5-10 other people will have had the exact same problem at some point and will give you advice on how to fix it. That definitely makes life easier!
88 TC 5-speed
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Paul Offline
Junior Member
#6
Quote:Originally posted by 4x4ord:
I need something that will get better gas milage

I don't know what MPG you get with the Ranger, but I regularly see 22-24 combined, and about 30 highway (around 63 MPH). I've never had less than 20 MPG (all town). My brother and I have owned 85, 87, and 88 TC. My preference is the 87 and 88, but be prepared for maintenance issues no matter what you buy. Enjoy! pcc

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1987 TurboCoupe; black 5 speed; all options except leather and moonroof; all stock.
1987 TurboCoupe; black 5 speed; all options except leather and moonroof; all stock.
2006 Chevrolet Express 3500 15-passenger van; all stock
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Noname
Guest
#7
Thanks for the replys guys.

Yes, I am enough of a shade tree mechanic to do anything aside from fabrication.

About the gas milage thing ... shssshh ... that's my justification for a TC [Image: biggrin.gif] But my Ranger gets about 17 highway/ 15 city, and I do alot of highway driving, if I could get 30 it would help ALOT. And ... two vehicles are better than one right [Image: rolleyes.gif]. Another thing ... my ranger's milage peaks at about 50 and goes down exponentially after that ... until top speed at about 85 (that's without a head wind [Image: biggrin.gif]) The roads I drive are 70mph w/ traffic doin' about 90.

Another question ... how big are the gas tanks in TC's? Will I be able to make a 350mi shot on one tank?

Thanks again,

Don

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Not TC owner ... but long time fan ... currently looking for TC.

Forever Ford Owner

'86 Ranger STX 4x4
'72 Ranchero 351C (for sale)
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TurboCoupe50 Offline
Posting Freak
#8
Not sure about the earlier birds, but the 87-88 has a 22 gal tank. Thats 550 miles at 25mpg.

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Two 1988 Turbo Coupes ..... yea one of em has a 5.0 And runs 13.3s
1988 Turbo Coupe331 AOD

1972 Comet GT

1969 Fairlane Cobra 428CJ 4-Speed
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Scot Offline
Member
#9
I'm driving an '87 Turbocoupe as my daily commuter car (75 miles/day). I've travelled roughly 13,000 miles in the past 7 months and have not had any problems as yet, at least none that my 'shadetree skills' have not been able to handle. Up here we're paying around $2 US a gallon for premium (94 octane) and I can't complain about mileage even with a heavy right foot [Image: smile.gif]
1987 Turbocoupe

3" downpipe, hi-flow 3" cat
2.5" single exhaust and Dynamax Superturbo

2006 Dodge Magnum
1996 Voyager
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Noname
Guest
#10
what about a Turbo GT?? friend of mine up in Wa State has an 84 for sale... could take some trouble shooting to get it to start but its not locked up and its all there... i DONT know the condition of it but he is only asking a grand ( offer 800 and it would probably be yours)

if you are interested contact [email protected]

John Bewley
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