Another year and another mild-refresh for the Mustang. The biggest difference was the front of the car, now with a cleaner front fascia. The egg-crate front grille was replaced by a nose that more closely resembled the clean look of the Mustang SVO. The headlights of the SVOs were changed mid-year in 1985 from being recessed to being flush with the corner lights. Horsepower in the SVO was also changed mid-year, from 175 to 205 horsepower. To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Twister Special, Ford produced 90 Twister II Mustangs.
Three variants were offered in 1985, including the GT, LX, and SVO. The 1985 Mustang silhouette remained relatively unchanged from the 1984 model. The nose design got an all-new grille design featuring a single large slit between the two pairs of headlights to look more like the Mustang SVO. The addition of flush mounted headlights on the SVO optioned Ford made the SVO them look decidedly more modern.
Although the lineup of available engine options remained the same, the two high output motors gained horsepower. The 2.3 liter inline 43 cylinder remained at 88 horsepower, while the 3.8 liter V6 provided 120 hp. The 3.8L was still the basic engine in the convertible other than that, the 2.3 L four cylinder was the basic engine.
Performance was starting to come back into favor in 1985 because Ford did some work on beering up the tried and true 5.0L engine. The 5.0L H.O. Mustang receives a two-speed accessory belt drive, a camshaft with roller lifters and stainless steel shorty headers, not cast manifolds. The GT also got a dual exhaust system. The 5.0 HO engine now could achieve 210 hp in four-barrel carburetor form (as long as it is not with automatic-overdrive that uses throttle body fuel injection).
The GT could also be optioned out with an automatic overdrive transmission. However if you got the AOD transmission, you got the 165 hp throttle body engine, not the tuned multi-port injection engine. The Mustang GT received a new set of 15-inch cast-aluminum wheels with P225/60VR15 Goodyear Eagle ‘Gatorback’ tires. Suspension wise, the car used a Quadra shock rear end setup. It got a bigger stabilizer bar and bigger and wider tires. The GT also changes got more tasteful graphics, but don’t worry because the GT was still easy to identify with its blacked out hood stripe and GT logo as well as its lower valance mounted fog lights.
Another engine that received some modification this year was the 2.3L SVO Turbo. It received a bigger cam, reworked heads, better exhaust system, turbo boost was increased by one pound. This engine was rated at 205hp. However, the Turbo GT also benefited from several other SVO chassis improvements to make it more responsive and have a better ride. The turbocharged four was taken off the Mustang GT options list, meanwhile the SVO continued in the lineup.
On the inside, form fitting cloth seats became standard equipment in the interior, with a leather seat option. The only color available if you ordered the SVO option was a charcoal interior, although five colors were possible on the outside.
Special Edition Models & Variants
The Mustang GT was back in 1985 as the sport upgrade package. The most exciting part about this packages was that Ford continued to use the now high-performance 5-liter (302 cid) HO engine package in the GT. The 1985 GT Mustang came standard with this improved 5.0L unit that was producing 210hp in 1985, up 35hp over 1984’s unit. The 1985 Mustang GT also came with hood stripes and decals, and functional front air dam with integrated fog lamps. New to 1985 were several interior options, new wheels and an embossed GT icon near the rear wheel.
This was the last year for the 4-cycle 2.3L Turbo engine upgrade which put out 145hp but better gas mileage for the GT package. While it only lasted three years, it was a fun car and it definitely deserved more kudos than it got. The option package was $230 more than the GT and not many were built over the 3 year run.
The SVO Turbo Mustang started the 1985 model year with the previous year’s air-to-air intercooled, turbocharged, 175hp, 2.3 liter, electronic fuel injected, inline 4-cylinder. Mid year this changed to a 205hp version by incorporating some of the GT improvements as well as reworked turbo elements. The 1985 SVO continued to have the charcoal front and rear bumper moldings, double split rear spoiler, single hole grille, and single offset integrated hood scoop. The SVO also got flush single-unit halogen headlights during the mid-year update.
A limited edition model called the Twister II was sold in the Kansas City sales district in 1985 on the 15th anniversary of the original. The limited run 1985 Twister II Mustang’s were basically standard 1985 Mustang GT’s with a decal package applied by the Kansas City District Sales office (DSO 53). Since the limited edition 1985 Twister II Mustangs featured no additional performance equipment and offered only small cosmetic changes over a regular Mustang GT, the topic of Twister II values can be somewhat controversial.
Base sticker prices for the coupe was $6,989 while the base hatchback was $7,509. The convertible continued to be priced at a whopping $12,237 in base form. For more detailed options and pricing, please check out our 1985 pricing and options research.
2 Door Hardtop
2 Door Hatchback
2 Door Convertible
Exterior & Interior Colors
A total of 13 colors were available for the 1985 Mustang model year. For detailed colors, color palettes, codes and interior colors please check out our in depth 1985 colors information post.
Dimensions & Weight
The 1985 Mustang had the same dimensions as the prior year model. No notable changes to the size.