Top Choice of the Day: 1986 ASC/McLaren Capri

The article discusses the unique 1986 ASC/McLaren Capri convertible, a rare limited-edition car with a two-seater Mustang convertible design. The car features Mercedes SL-inspired boot, McLaren-supplied suspension items, and special exterior styling. Inside, the car offers leather sport seats, custom console, and 140-mph speedometer. The 1986 model also introduced a 3.8 V6 engine option and 302cid V8 with sequential multi-port fuel injection. Despite positive feedback, ASC/McLaren switched to the Mustang for the 1987 model year and discontinued the project in 1990. The featured 1986 ASC/McLaren Capri convertible is Jet Black with a 5.0-liter V8 and tan top, Desert Sand leather interior. It is listed for sale for $27,995 on ClassicCars.com.

We’re suckers for limited-edition cars that end up being curiosities decades later. The Chevrolet-based 1956-57 El Morocco looked like a Cadillac Eldorado. What about the 1976 Chevrolet Monte Carlo Custom Cloud that looked like a Rolls-Royce? There are several footnotes of unique cars in American automotive history that should be earmarked for preservation, including our Pick of the Day, a 1986 ASC/McLaren Capri convertible listed for sale on ClassicCars.com by a dealership in St. Charles, Missouri. (Click the link to view the listing)

In 1982, a gentleman by the name of Peter Muscat approached Ford with the idea of a two-seater Mustang convertible. Ford was preparing a Mustang convertible for 1983, so the automaker suggested Muscat sell his idea to Mercury, which only offered the Mustang-based Capri in a three-door hatchback style. Mercury liked the idea, so Muscat contracted American Sunroof Company (ASC, later known as American Specialty Cars) to assist in the conversion, which included a Mercedes SL-inspired boot. ASC brought McLaren into the fold, who supplied suspension items and wheels. Production began in 1984, with the package being fine-tuned each year through 1986, the final year of the Fox-bodied Capri.

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For 1986, the ASC/McLaren Capri featured ground effects that gave it even more unique styling than just being a two-seater Capri convertible; other exterior features included special 15×7-inch cast-aluminum wheels and custom exterior paint and accents. Inside, upgrades included special leather sport seats (with Recaros optional), polished hardwood dashboard appliques, custom console and interior trim with special rear storage compartments, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter knob, and 140-mph speedometer. The 3.8 V6 also became available for the first time, but new for the 302cid V8 was sequential multi-port fuel injection, offering 200 horsepower and sub-15-second ETs. With apologies to the Mustang, was the Boss back? Sure felt like it.

Ford liked what Muscat had done with the ASC/McLaren, so for 1987 ASC/McLaren switched to the Mustang. However, due to business disagreements, the project was discontinued after 1990.

This Jet Black 1986 ASC/McLaren Capri convertible is one of 245 convertibles built (plus an additional 115 hatchbacks and 47 EuroCoupes). Power comes from a 5.0-liter V8 backed by a five-speed manual with 3.08 gears in a limited-slip rear. The tan top and Desert Sand leather bucket seat interior contrast nicely with the paint. With only 19,040 miles, this is a 1980s collectible that is best served going to shows versus the Circle-K, but if you’re the one who will spend $27,995 to bring it home, you get to choose how you drive it, right?

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

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