In 1984, Popular Mechanics Magazine featured an article about police cars. In the forefront of the main article photo was a Georgia State Patrol (GSP) 1983 SSP Ford Mustang.
(Photo from 1984 Popular Mechanics article)
As awesome as these cars were, they eluded collectors for years. Bobby Edwards (kapracing) is a collector of GSP Mustangs, and has managed to collect a lot of information on these cars. He has searched for one of these GSP Mustangs since around 2006.
Ford built these SSP Mustangs in batches, so if you can locate a VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) number of a specific year SSP, you can do Carfax searches to find other cars built in those batches. There were 10 cars built for the GSP in 1983, and a search revealed that 3 of the cars may still be in existence. In 2013, Bobby posted an ad on Craigslist for the area of Carrolton Georgia, listed the 10 VIN numbers as potential GSP cars, and that he was looking for one for restoration. Four months later he was contacted by a 3rd party person that knew where one was. This person was trying to buy the car from its owner, and sell it to him for a big profit. The deal never worked out, but he was eventually contacted by the true owner, and bought it that day.
In the photo gallery below, you can see various photos of the car along with descriptions. The car is actually very solid, and in much better condition than its appearance suggests. Bobby states that it is actually really solid and straight, and has minimal surface rust in the typical places ( bottom of drivers door, lip of rain channel in trunk). It has all its original body panels, except for the hood. The trunk lid will need replaced because a previous owner drilled holes for a wing. Someone also trimmed the inner brace to clear a huge battery box. The cowl hood will get replaced with a proper hood.
At some point the interior was dyed red. It’s all there and original, except for the carpet, which was replaced with actual red carpet.
Also, since the car was missing its motor, Bobby located another 1983 5.0L Mustang motor through a friend. This way he’s keeping the car as accurate as he can.
After purchasing the car, the next step was to locate as much information about the car as possible. Agencies number their cars, and sometimes you can find information on cars if you have that identifying number.
(Car’s unit number 3083 found under a sticker on the core support)
Bobby found a sticker on the core support, and when he removed it, he found the remains of 3083, which was the cars assigned unit number.
Bobby was able to make contact with the former GSP officer in the photograph (above) of the ’83 by the guardrail. The picture was taken near the GSP Headquarters on Confederate Ave in Atlanta.
In his search, he was also able to make contact with retired GSP Fleet Manager Jimmy Crump.
In his research, he has found that not all of the (10) ’83 Mustangs were equipped the same. The Mustang shown by the guardrail was from the Atlanta post, and had the “state of the art” Whelen dash strobes and rear deck lights. Note that the car above does not have the lights under the bumper like the one used in the Popular Mechanics photo.
He also found out that the lights under the bumper of some of the ’83 Mustangs were Whelen PAR 36 strobes in Yankee housings.
Bobby’s Mustang has holes drilled in his dash pad from where a metal plate was mounted for the Whelen dash light. You can actually see the dash light in the in-service photo of this car:
You can see the Whelen dash strobe light in this photo:
Whelen dash strobe light
And speaking of photos, this one shows that the ’83 Mustangs had roll bars installed:
Roll bar visible in this photo
As far as who drove the car, Bobby found out that it was assigned to Trooper Carlton Stallings badge # 99 (now a retired Captain). Here is a newspaper photo of Trooper Stallings and the Mustang:
Newspaper photo of the Mustang with Trooper Carlton Stallings
So from the information he’s gathered to date, it appears that this car did not have the Yankee lights under the front bumper, and was equipped with a Whelen dash strobe, strobe lights in the rear window, a siren, and a radio.
Bobby is currently restoring a 1992 Georgia State Patrol SSP Mustang, and will start the restoration on this one when he’s finished.
I anxiously await for this restoration. I know Bobby will do a fantastic job preserving this cars history.
Special thanks to Mick (foxchassis) who verified the batch of 10 VIN’s as GSP. With help from Mick and Bill (28 hopup) Bobby discovered that there were only (3) possible cars that may still exist from the original (10) to narrow down his search.
Here’s Some More Photos:
Click the photos to enlarge.
Have photos or information to share on any Georgia State Patrol Mustangs or LTD’s? Use the ‘Contact’ button at the bottom right.