The History of the 1990 Nevada Highway Patrol Ford SSP Mustang Unit # 217:
On June 22, 1994 the Nevada Highway Patrol decided to retire the 1990 Ford SSP Mustang Unit 217 with 102,352 miles on it. It was first taken to a low-bidder painter who stripped off the stripes and the star on the doors and the highway patrol lettering on the front fenders and trunk. Then, with no other prep work, the painter mixed up some ugly Smurf blue paint (as I call it) and sprayed the entire car. Not masking it off not so well, this car had overspray everywhere. I think the reason for spraying the car a different color was because there were other Nevada Highway Patrol Mustangs still in service. So they wanted to make it different.
Then the Mustang was released to Stremmel Auctions Inc. of Reno, Nevada and on November 19, 1994 it was sold in auction to a guy that buys and sells used police cars from state auctions. After speaking with this gentleman when I bought it, he told me that he bought this Mustang to keep for himself. He always wanted to have an old Highway Patrol Mustang. After he was the winning bid at the auction, he drove it home from Reno, Nevada to his home in Grants Pass, Oregon. He told me that he enjoyed the drive, as it performed well and was fun to drive into the corners at high speeds. He told me that the Mustang didn't do much after he bought it as it sat at his home for about 6 years. Then he decided to sell it on his friend's car lot in Myrtle Creek, Oregon.
The car sat for another 2 years and became a dirty, moldy, vandalized mess with "$1999 Firm" written on the windshield with white grease pencil. It also said "Cold Air, V-8, Runs Good". This is the condition I found it in. The original highway patrol tires were cracking. Three of the four tires were flat. The driver's door glass was smashed out along with both tail lights. There was a black Glad trash bag taped with duct tape over the broken driver side door glass. Upon opening the trunk and engine hood, I discovered hornets living in the nests they'd built inside over the years.
Despite all the above mentioned drawbacks, I saw a vision of what this car had been and what it could become again. I purchased this Mustang June 19, 2002. I spent the next 16 months stripping, sanding, and prepping the car for bodywork and paint. All the while I was gathering needed parts from wrecking yards and searching for emergency equipment and donations from local law enforcement agencies. I was able to finish just hours before the Ripon, California Restored Emergency Vehicle Car Show began. Currently, the car has 104,320 miles on its odometer. All the lettering and decals are magnetic and ready to apply for shows and parades. I have had much support and admiration from local law enforcement and the public in general. It's a real head turner and keeps people going the speed limit on the roads.
Cool ride Ryan, haven't seen a lot of these restored, but they are a great looking SSP!
Back to Gallery: