1987 Ford Thunderbird Turbo Coupe

This was the first brand new car I ever bought, way back in '87 after I took a job at Ford as a manufacturing engineer. I think I paid about $18,500 for it, which would be around $40,600 today after adjusting for inflation. It made all of 195 horsepower with a turbocharged four cylinder Pinto engine, had cloth seats, adjustable shocks, A/C, anti lock brakes, aluminum wheels, an AM-FM radio + cassette player, and a power adjustable driver seat. A nicely equipped car for the day.

A couple years ago I bought a 2015 Mustang for $45,000. It made 410 horsepower, had a reverse camera, parking sensors, heated and cooled leather seats, navigation system, and too many other features to mention. Looking at it in the context of what I paid 30 years ago, the Mustang is a real bargain. (I don’t have the Mustang any more, now driving an F-150 4X4 - Needed the hauling/towing capability)

I used procedural textures where I could, but the headlights have defeated me for now and I used the best photos I could find online as image textures. Tail lights are fully procedural/modeled, but need some more work. The interior is empty so far.

Next: finishing up on some exterior details and tackling the interior, then sorting out what to do with the scene.


Great stuff!
Love to see the more odd cars.
Are you going for a realistic representation? Because the rims are too big and the tyres are too low profile, the nose is a little ‘‘pushed in’’. Other than that, this is great work so far!

Nice catch on the wheels and tires, BTW. If one looks real close, the tires are 20" Pirellis and so the wheels are scaled up to match. I think the original car had 16" or 17" wheels/tires. I got lazy and grabbed the Pirellis from an older project…
As for the front end, yeah, getting the proportions close to correct is challenging working from photos. I’ll revisit that, along with the wheels and tires.

So, I’ve scaled the wheels and tires down to roughly 17" and changed the tires to Michelins. Also extended to nose several inches at the center. Finally, I worked some on the scene, but it’s still missing something…

Still need to work on the interior too…


I got started on adding some details to the scene, and haven’t touched the car since.


I’ve shifted things around a bit, scaled up the buildings some, and changed the perspective view. I wanted a twilight/evening scene, but the lighting is killing me - For now the lighting is just an outdoor HDR background. I also need to learn how to realistically grunge things up - Right now it’s all too sanitary.


Now playing with lighting, trying to get a night time scene. Still needs work for sure.


Still working on the lighting. Getting details to show a black car at night without messing up the overall lighting is a challenge. I ended up using a number of area lamps placed very close to the car with emission values of around 4 to 10, depending on location.


nice work :slight_smile:

Hi, I was wondering if you could leave a download link to the mode. I’ve been trying to make my own or find another one online but the only other model I found was uploaded to a website that requires personal information and ridiculous requirements to download just one model. I’ve been trying to create my own but to no luck it doesn’t look right to begin with. And by what it looks like you have the only other model of this car. The reason I’m interested in this model is because I so have this vehicle as well Any downloads to the .blend file would be appreciated so much Looking forward to hearing from you soon!