Just Bought My 1st Cougar!

Hi Everyone,

I just wanted to take a second and introduce myself, My name is Gene and I live in Bartlett, Il. 60103.

I recently bought my 1st Cougar, it is a 1968 Base Model NON-Numbers Matching with a 302 H.O. believed to be out of an 88 Mustang GT.

VIN 8R91C520098 Door Tag Info 65A M 1A 28E 53 5 W

I purchased this car off from Craigslist Phoenix AZ and had it shipped to me via open car carrier. It is a clean Western Car with only a few surface rust areas, quite small in size.

I think I did fairly well considering the prices I’ve seen out there. I picked her up for $4500. I sent my friend’s brother in law and sister to broker the deal for me because they live in Prescott AZ.

I was raised on cars, my dad drove a 67 Chevelle SS 327 4 Spd when I was a kid. I’ve owned numerous Camaro’s and currently have a 1986 Fiero SE V6 4spd. with under 41k original miles (2nd owner), which is currently on Ebay, Replacing the Fiero with the Cougar so I can fit the whole family in to go to cruise nights / car shows.

The car I purchased isn’t perfect, obviously, for the price I paid, but it does seem to be a real good start and it’s a driver already.

I’m planning on taking her in and having the transmission rebuild this week, it’s slipping bad, which I knew about from the seller, he was a super honest guy and pointed out any and all issues before I purchased. The trans is believed to be the original C4 and I’ve gotten a price from a local reputable Trans shop to rebuild it “Bullet Proof” with a Shift Kit for $1895.00 out the door. 30 Month 30,000 Mile Warranty, guess which one it’ll be? Highly doubt I’ll be driving my Cougar 10,000 miles a year, considering since we only get 5 to 7 months of decent weather in the Chicagoland area anyways.

Sorry for the long winded introduction. Like I said I just wanted to introduce myself because I’m sure you guys will be hearing from me A LOT as questions arise, which I’m sure they will, I’ve already got a few. LOL

Cougar Front End.jpg
Cougar Tail Lights.jpg

Gene welcome to the Classic Cougar Community. It great to have another new member. It looks like you got a good deal. Making memories with the family at cruise nights and shows is what it’s all about. Enjoy and ask plenty of questions there is a a lot of knowledgeable members her to give you advise.

Congrats and welcome!

Welcome to the madness :beerchug: Look forward to your progress and the picture updates :smoke:

Welcome! Looks like a nice car at a decent price. :beerchug:

Very nice grab. Enjoy driver her around town.

Chicago area getting a little crowded with Cougars now! LOL. As expressed earlier, welcome to the madness!

We need a Chicago meet up sometime this summer, eh? I’m stuck in the garage right now as the long overdue power steering rebuild is underway. But hopefully sometime before the end of the season we can all get together somewhere and shoot the breeze. Congrats on getting another west coast cougar out here into the rust belt. :slight_smile:


Thanks for all the warm welcomes!

She’s already in the Trans Shop getting the Trans rebuild and a shift kit installed. I knew it needed this work before I bought her.

Next up will be fixing the turn signals, and the pop up headlights (going to upgrade both systems).

After that will be getting the radio working, hoping to go with a power antenna (As I currently have no antenna) and no power to the radio.

Then after that I’m leaning towards a posi traction rear end with a different gear set, any suggestions on what is a good size streetable gear?
I still want to be able to cruise along on the highway at 70 MPH when needed.

Then I think I’ll do headers and some glass packs.

Oh, and at some point I’m going to change the paint, I’m thinking of something like a Black Cherry color, with Metalic flake, but possibly in a dark Blue replacing the Red. Black Blueberry? Something that will look deep blue in the daytime, but almost appear black at night.

I did however rattle can the rims, and buy some Chrome Lug Nuts and Chrome Trim Rings, I think they look 100% better than the hubcaps she came with, I’m considering some baby moon hubcaps? As Rims are fairly low on my list of thing to do, of course that’s always subject to change.

A Chicago Area meet up sounds Great!
Cougar Passenger Side_opt 2.jpg
Cougar Hub Cap.jpg

Welcome aboard!!!

Congratulations on the purchase, and welcome to the board!

Welcome. Looks like you did well with your purchase. I agree with your decision to ditch those hubcaps. That’s an imaginative exhaust pipe routing btw.

Right? Oh trust me, the exhaust pipes will be changed too, lol. I could have at least seen where the previous owner was going if he would have had them dump out BEFORE the rear wheels. Or here’s a novel concept, how about we just go straight out the back? Slight downturn, only if needed.

A few engine pics.
Cougar Motor 2.jpg
Cougar Motor 1.jpg

Let me know if you guys get together in Chgo ,northern il…I’m in north central illinois

Nice clean looking Cat. As Far as gear ratios go, it’s entirely subjective to opinion. Been discussed several times on here. My preference in your case would probably be somewhere in the 3:40-3.55 Range? Assuming that you want to be able to roast the tires when you want, and chirp them in second under full throttle but still get ok-ish fuel economy. A lot of other guys have said that 3:25 is enough with these cars? I know a lot of guys around here with 80’s Mustangs that do the 3:55 with 3 speeds and they seam to enjoy them. With the AOD that came with the Stang in the 80’s I’ve seen as high as 4:11’s while still being able to cruise at decent RPM’s on the interstate… it really is just boiled down to a preference… Are there any mods to the 5.0 other than the carburetor swap and cosmetics?

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I don’t think there have been any engine mods yet, not even sure what year the engine is from, I need to find the numbers on the block and run them. Since I’ve last been on I’ve purchased some tires and rims from a fellow forum member, added a leaf to each side to eliminate rubbing of said wheels. I’ve also replaced the goofy exhaust she came with to pipes straight out the back with stainless steel tips and a set of FloMaster 40 series mufflers. I’ve also got my turn signals working, put in a new turn signal switch and an aftermarket steering wheel on, I have to take the steering wheel apart again to try to figure out where I went wrong as my turn signals now don’t turn off by themselves after completing a turn, I think there is most likely a piece in the original steering wheel center section that I need to use with the aftermarket steering wheel.
Cougar_Weld_Wheels_New_Springs_and_Exhaust Resize.jpg

I just put a Grant 1170 steering wheel in my '69 convertible and there was a note in there on some specifics regarding the self cancelling turn signals. What steering wheel did you put in your car?


This is the one I installed.