Click on the link below for specific information or see the Q&A section.

Thanks to Dale Amond, Mark Woodhouse, Charles Walker, Charles Ricks, Bruce Howard, Thomas Tate and Mike Potter for their contributions to these pages.



SSP Technical Reference Information VIN Registry Wiring/Vehicle Usage Documentation Restoration Guides




Some common SSP Tech Q&A:


Q: What is a 'door sticker'?

A: A door sticker, or Vehicle Certification label (VC) is found on the drivers' door jamb, and lists all options for the car. This will tell you the DSO, Date of Manufacture, model, trim, interior, radio, AC, axle, paint, and transmission as well as the the VIN. All Mustangs will have one, not just SSP cars, but they can provide some clues about the vehicle you are interested in. For info on how to decode a VC label, see the Door stickers page.


Q: What is a 'DSO'?

A: A DSO can stand for several things, but for SSP Mustangs, it means 'Domestic Special Order'. Items can have an RPO(Regular Production Option) or DSO status. The DSO is a way for a dealer to order a non-standard group of items for a given vehicle. For example, all SSP cars could have a collection of Police only items i.e. DSO 1 for VASCAR 2-pc speedo cable, DSO 2 for Silicone hoses, etc. Since it's much easier to package these into a group and specify a single group number than listing many items, this is where the DSO code comes in. Looking at the VC label on the driver's door jamb, you can see a 6 character DSO value, with the first 2 identifying the District Sales Office (another DSO value-don't get confused!) placing the order, and the last 4 the DSO group number (for a VC example, see the Door stickers page). It's this all important DSO that helps us distinguish these cars from non-SSP versions; on the regular vehicles, the DSO value will be 2 characters only, indicating simply the District Sales Office through which the vehicle was ordered(see the DSO page for more info on DSO's). DSO's were used on many types of Ford vehicles, including other Police package cars, and special edition civilian models.

    To order a DSO group, a customer used a special order form to identify the options that they wanted. For an example of this, see the 1993 BW dealer brochure example on the Brochures page.


Q: What is a 'buck tag', and why is it important?

A: A buck, or body build, tag is a set of metal tags attached to the radiator support, drivers side, on SSP model Mustangs. These tags were added to the vehicle as it made it's way down the production line, and are stapled to the radiator core support on the driver's side (for the location, see the Bucktags page). On SSP MUstangs, there are 2 tags, the first will list options for the car, the second will detail Police specific items such as agency, sales office, special paint, etc. The buck tags are important because a person can claim a car is an SSP equipped model by adding certain 'Police' items but the bucktags for the car will tell the tale.


Q: How can I tell what drivetrain and options my SSP should have, and whether it's a real SSP?

A: There's several pieces to this puzzle: First the VIN will tell you which model and engine code your car has. All SSP cars were built with 5.0 engines and were sedan or notchback body style (there are 5 documented 1982 CHP hatchbacks) see the VIN codes page. Next, the door sticker will provide you with similar information, including the VIN, axle, transmission, paint codes and a 6 character DSO used only for Police vehicles (see the Door stickers and DSO pages on how to decode). Also, if you have the buck tags for the car (there will be 2 on an SSP), these will give you valuable data about options and which department ordered the vehicle (see the Bucktags page). Finally, other misc. documents like Window Stickers, Build Sheets, Titles, etc can provide clues (see the Window sticker/Build Sheets page).

     It's not always easy to piece together the information, especially when the car has changed hands numerous times, been wrecked, etc. SSP pieces such as certified speedometers, silicone hoses, etc are available through the aftermarket, so if you're considering purchasing one consider all the information carefully; Don't let the presence of a few 'correct' items convince you mistakenly as to the cars authenticity.