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Old 01-12-2016, 11:16 PM   #51 (permalink)
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What about a 60s Alfa Romeo Giulia Super?

4 Doors, cd of 0.34, big trunk, 5 speed, LSD, gets 30 MPG stock and a blast to drive. Upgrade to a 1.8 or 2.0 engine easily, play with rear end ratios to build something you want.

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Old 01-12-2016, 11:16 PM   #52 (permalink)
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I realize it's a two door but, how about a Torino Talladega?










Looks like decent aero potential. I'll fiddle around with the template after this post...

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Old 01-12-2016, 11:24 PM   #53 (permalink)
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Plop in an '86-'95 roller 5.0 with a T-5 and you could have fun and get decent mpg to boot.
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Old 01-12-2016, 11:36 PM   #54 (permalink)
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Ok ... here's my take, and I say this as someone who is a great fan of the styling of "classic" cars.

If you're planning to cart your entire family around on a regular basis, going with an old car is a mistake, if only because newer cars are SO much safer in a crash, even if you don't count modern advances like air bags and anti-lock brakes. Just the structures themselves absorb much of the energy in a crash, unlike older cars that transmit those forces to the occupants. In my opinion, no amount of energy efficiency in an older, lighter, vehicle is worth the trade-off.

That said, I'd suggest that even though you have experience with the Crown Vic / Grand Marquis twins (and may even be bored with them), I'd go looking for one of the recent stretched police/taxi versions and use that as a starting point. The newer ones have the extra safety features you'll want to protect your family in a collision, and the extra few inches of length in the cabin will provide some "stretch-out" room for the rear passengers, as well as giving you a slightly more aerodynamic version of the car than the slightly shorter cabin provides. An interesting alternative would be a late model Town Car, which would be even more spacious and quiet. A huge trunk is a bonus, and any variant of the platform offers so many possibilities for alternative power.

Obvious choices would be a small diesel, though I think a really cool new option would be to find a totaled F150 with the twin-turbo V6 drivetrain and transplant that into the Panther. I suspect that mileage would easily hit your projected mark without any loss in power or drivability. A clue into this is the same powertrain in a Ford Flex, which isn't as aerodynamic but is capable of highway mileage in the mid to high twenties.

Whatever you choose to do, good luck with it! I look forward to reading about the project as it progresses! ;-)

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Old 01-13-2016, 04:18 AM   #55 (permalink)
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Safe, stylish, good MPG?
If you can live with the performance (which I suppose you do since you post here ), check out the 80's / early 90's Merc Diesel, W201 (190) & W124 (also comes as estate).
Engines run forever, you can pour WVO right in, safe for their age and easy to maintain.
Mercedes-Benz 190D Mileage | Fuelly
1985 Mercedes-Benz 200D Mileage
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Old 01-13-2016, 09:24 AM   #56 (permalink)
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I have always wanted to use a 2 door Dodge Dart, 67-73, before crash bumpers. And swap in Chrysler 2.5 turbo power, would have to use a RWD NA block for engine mount bosses. Plenty of room for my 6'3" self, and as a teen, I remember them being pretty comfy riding as well. There are a couple 5 speeds available, out of Dakotas and Wranglers, so you won't be speed shifting. And I am not aware of the higher diff gearing in the various Chrysler axles you will find under these. I know I considered a Jeep Cherokee Dana 35 which had 3.07s available. But other gearing? Not sure. But the Dart should be a lighter weight option, plentiful parts, and roomy. I know some have tuned the 2.5 Chrysler turbo engines for mpg and some claim 40+ with some detuning. Others, well, I know a few Dodge and Plymouth 2.5 minivans running 11 and 12 second quarter miles times, so if you want 300+HP, it can be made... That was the path I wanted back a few years ago...
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Old 01-14-2016, 09:24 AM   #57 (permalink)
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The early 90"s redesigned LTD/Crown Vic is really hard to beat if you want a huge 4 dr that can get good mileage. IIRC they cut 700 lbs off the previous model and still kept the full frame. I think the early 90's models were about 4200 lbs. The next redesign about 1995 added 300 to 400lbs.....just like almost all late 90's cars. Don't know how good the aero is, since this is the primary concern for highway.
Some also mentioned the old Dodge Dart. These were incredibly light vehicles. The 1973 2 door with a 340v-8 and 4 speed tipped the scales around 2800 lbs. ( my 93 Escort wagon is 2500 lbs) Properly tuned this carburated car could turn out mid to upper 20's on the highway. I'd guess you could do even better if it had the old slant 6. Don't know on aero, however. If you wanted something the size of the crown vic, you could step up to the Dodge Corenet, which was also incredibly light ( All of the Chrysler products from this era were dramatically lighter that there GM or Ford competitors). The Corenet also came standard with a slant 6. IIRC, they could also easily hit the mid 20's on the highway and had a top speed over 120 with the 6. All of the Chrysler's also had that funky suspension design (torsion bars and offset upper control arm mounts up front, offset leaf spring rear) that allowed the suspension axis to be above the center of gravity and allowed them to out handle and out brake most any car out there if a couple sway bars are added. A friend of mine used to race and when the Cuda's showed up the Corvettes left the track....they couldn't beat them. The later model dodge Diplomat could be a candidate too, but Chrysler quality had tanked by that time.

One other obviouos choice is found in Hugo's book, The earlier Audi sedans. These boxy sedans had Cd's around .3 and deisels. You could probably hit the 40's with these with some aero tweaks.
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Old 01-14-2016, 12:23 PM   #58 (permalink)
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As an aside, diplomat/5th Avenues could be had with a 2.45 diff ratio in the 8 1/4" axle.
Travis..
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Old 01-14-2016, 04:27 PM   #59 (permalink)
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85 LTD(Fairmont sized), like a 4 door Mustang, same fox platform. Bolt on parts.
I'm considering getting one. I think 30 should be doable. Lots of Hot Rodded Mustangs getting high 20's.

https://www.google.com/search?q=1985...HU3ZAO8QsAQIGw
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Old 01-14-2016, 05:35 PM   #60 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nonhog View Post
85 LTD(Fairmont sized), like a 4 door Mustang, same fox platform. Bolt on parts.
I'm considering getting one. I think 30 should be doable. Lots of Hot Rodded Mustangs getting high 20's.

https://www.google.com/search?q=1985...HU3ZAO8QsAQIGw
I kind of like that LTD. Shouldn't be hard to get it to handle like a track Mustang, have reasonable power and still turn decent MPGs...

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