CHP 1985 SSP Ford Mustang #E408395

In October 2008, Bill AKA ’28HopUp’ purchased this 1985 SSP (Special Service Package) Ford Mustang and was told by the previous owner that it was a former California Highway Patrol (CHP) car. The Mustang still had its 140 MPH speedometer, but was missing its 2nd buck tag. Bill was able to find the cars unit number, an then contacted the CHP Motor Transport and get the Mustangs assignment card.

Bill learned that his Mustang served at Quincy, California Station #165 for about a year and a half. Afterward, it was repainted silver by the CHP and sold at auction for $4,650.00. The history afterward gets a little fuzzy, but along the way it was repainted “Toyota Gray”. By the time it came into his custody, the Mustang’s specifications/modifications included:

  • Carbed 5.0L with 5-speed (Tremec)
  • Hurst shifter w/ stock handle
  • Centerforce clutch
  • CARB-legal JBA shorties w/ full cats and 2.25-inch dual 3-chamber Flowmasters
  • 1993 Cobra 8.8-Inch rear-end w/ disc brakes
  • 1987 & up 11-inch front disc brakes
  • Racecraft suspension with KYB shocks and aftermarket springs
  • Aftermarket panhard bar
  • Subframe connectors (welded)
  • 225/60R15 (front)
  • Bill painted the rims black, and added larger 255/60R15 BFG’s out back.

Bill sent the Mustang to a body shop who then stripped it down, repaired any rust or sheetmetal issues, and returned it to new condition. The body shop also re-opened the holes where the CHP antennas had been mounted.

Bill had the Mustang painted all black instead of the CHP black and white. Bill went with more of an unmarked look so he could daily drive the Mustang and not be stalked by the police.

The interior was freshened up as well. Bill found a set of seats to replace the originals that were worn out.

The biggest challenge is always finding the original equipment used by the agency. And with the California Highway Patrol, the hardest item to find is the Federal Signal CC1. The CC1 controls the Mustangs emergency lighting and siren. Bill managed to find one as well as the rear deck lights, spotlights, shotgun rack, Motorola Micor radio head, and Regency M100 scanner.

Although bill didn’t mark the car, he added the correct CHP antennas, rear deck lighting, and unity spotlights. Again not wanting to alarm the local law enforcement, Bill got some black 6-inch round vinyl light covers for some KC offroad lights, removed the white ‘KC’ lettering with acetone, and used them to cover the lights when he drove the vehicle on public roadways.

 

Bill also replaced the 5.0L engine with a rebuilt roller motor he found for sale at a local machine shop. It was a freshly rebuilt 5.0L with .030-over pistons, ported E7 heads, and a Comp Cams 266HR camshaft.

For Sale:

After enjoying the car for 5-years, Bill listed the CHP Mustang for $6,500 and sold it in November 2013.

It was advertised as follows:

BODY:

  • Here is the rebuild thread from our Members’ SSPs Section. The car was repainted in 2009 with base clear for a 2008 Mustang (picked in case I needed to match the paint later).
  • Both doors had rust at the bottom, and they were sanded and POR15 applied. One of the doors is starting to rust again, but it has not gone through to the doorskin.
  • There is a haze in the clearcoat behind the passenger door on the 1/4 panel, and the rooftop and decklid paint “appear” thin in spots with what appears to be a slight discoloration. The car was not chemically stripped, so that isn’t a cause here for the issue.
  • The headlight buckets and window surrounds were painted gloss black.
  • The beltline molding is satin black, not the original charcoal.
  • The siren hole was never cut into the bumper that came with the car.
  • There are paint chips here & there.
  • The underside was never restored, but it is solid underneath with no cracks or rust (other than surface rust on the subframe connectors).
  • The battery tray area was patched and the engine compartment painted with satin black.

ENGINE/DRIVETRAIN:

  • A rebuilt 87 roller motor was installed last year, and has less than 1,000 miles on it. It’s a freshly rebuilt 5.0L with .030-over pistons, ported E7 heads, and a Comp Cams 266HR bumpstick. It was rebuilt to be a mild upgrade over a stock fuel injected motor. It also has 1.7 Ford Motorsport roller rockers.
  • I BELIEVE we went with a RAM clutch and resurfaced the flywheel.
  • The transmission is an unknown factor, but it shifts smoothly and has not been a concern.
  • The 8.8″ rear-end has 3.27:1 gears and t-lok, along with 4-lug disk brakes (93 Cobra era).
  • Front brakes are 87-up 11″ Ford parts, requiring the use of the 10-hole wheels.
  • Dual exhaust with h-pipe, and 2 catalytic converters, along with Turbo Welded series mufflers. It sounds tough, without any drone.
  • Smog pump removed (included with car though). Charcoal canister still in use to pass Delaware inspection.
  • Currently running a 600cfm Edelbrock carb on stock intake.

INTERIOR:

  • New headliner, package tray, carpet, and dash pad form FMR in 2009.
  • Heater-core bypassed.
  • The seats are not 85-correct, but I am unsure of the exact year. Driver’ seat is slightly worn with a small tear.
  • None of the CHP equipment has been mounted, other than the lights.

MISC:

  • Driver’s side spotlight wired to a new fuse block mounted under dash.
  • Have an extra passenger side spotlight (the one mounted is not functioning or wired).
  • Rear deck lights wired up with an under-dash 2-way switch (used an existing hole). The lights are routed through a wig-wag relay for an alternating pattern depending on switch position.
  • Shotgun rack is not 85-era correct, so it will need the brackets modified to mount in car.
  • CC1 included, along with many trunk parts and CHP fire extinguisher.
  • Five 85/86 wheels included (along with the blacked-out 10-holes on the car), and four 85 caps also included.
  • Spare/front tires are 225/60R15 in size. They have good tread but need to be replaced due to age.
  • Rear tires are BFGs, and IIRC they are 255/60R15 in size (will confirm and edit).
  • CHP logo/star/decklid words are mounted on black magnetic material for display purposes.

EQUIPMENT TO BE INCLUDED WITH THE CAR:

  • The ruby-red driver’s side spotlight is wired up to a fuse block under the dash. This is the single-wire design, but a second wire could be added to run to the CC1 controller.
  • The clear passenger spotlight is not hooked up (I have a second clear spotlight included with the car). They both are the single-wire design.
  • The correct rear deck lights are wired to a switch under the dash using a modern wig-wag relay to activate the alternating light pattern. Power comes from the fuse block (which can be disconnected under the hood by pulling the in-line fuse).
  • Also included is a Federal Signal CC1 controller (which would be mounted in the slot for the factory radio), but it is the one with red and yellow indicator lights on the face. IIRC, the correct CC1 only has a red indicator light.
  • I do not recall if I have a MPA2 siren amplifier or not. The car does not have a siren.
  • A Motorola Micor head unit is included, but it is not era-correct. I do not have a mounting bracket yet for it. There are two corded microphones.
  • The two antennae are mounted on the car. The roof antenna has a cable to run from the back of the car to the radio. The 1/4 panel whip does not have any wiring.
  • The correct Regency M100 scanner included. I do not recall if there is a mounting bracket or not.
  • There is an extended dual-receiver Micor radio tray, but I do not see the MASTR II repeater (I cannot remember if I ever received one). There is a junction-box wiring harness included. None of the radio equipment has been tested, so I cannot say whether or not they work.
  • A shotgun rack is included, along with a Roxter light. The rack does not have the correct brackets for an 85, so some modification will be required.
  • A CHP fire extinguisher and bracket are included, but the unit is empty.
  • I believe there is a CHP First Aid kit and bracket for this car, but I did not see it in my storage area.
  • I have 5 correct steel wheels and 4 correct (used) caps, in addition to the blacked-out 10-holes on the car. The front tires need replacing, which I can do (depending on final price) prior to a buyer coming in to drive the car home. The rear tires are oversized BFGs, which look great IMO.

Relisted And Sold Again:

In March of 2014 (just 5-months later) CHP Mustang #E408395 showed up for sale on the South Jersey Craigslist for $16,900. The new owner had painted the doors and roof white, added the California Highway Patrol markings, installed the equipment that came with the car, and jacked the price up $10,000.

Hopefully whoever has the Mustang now is actually enjoying it, and not seeing it as an investment.

More Photos:

Click the photos to enlarge.

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I started my career as a police officer in 1989 with the Geneva on The Lake Police Department. I worked part time as a police officer and full time as a Sergeant doing armed mobile security patrols for a local security company. In 1990 I became a State Trooper with the Ohio State Highway Patrol. During my career as a State Trooper I was certified as a Technical Crash Investigator, OPOTA Police Instructor, OPOTA Driving Instructor, LASER Instructor, and received awards for ACE (Auto Larceny) and Post Trooper of The Year. Code 3 Garage is a mix of my inner automotive gearhead, and public safety background. I hope you enjoy it!