1986 Ford Telstar TX5 AS 2.0L petrol turbo from Australia and New Zealand


Quick, cheap, nimble sportscar. A 5 door hatch with flat fold seats, and room to sleep in the back


When I first got the car, the electronic gas struts were gone, and were so sloppy it handled like a boat. I replaced the springs and shocks with lowered heavy duty and GT Gas shocks though, and it handled well.

The turbo was still working OK, but I did a swap for a reconditioned turbo and high flowed factory one, and also installed a full 2-1/2" Mandrel bent exhaust. The new suspension stopped the torque steer that I got with the improvements to the exhaust flow.

I had to remove and replace one rear brake caliper, but I sourced it from a Ghia model, where rear discs were optional; the turbo had 4W discs as standard

The parts were fairly easy to find, being a fairly common car, and Mazda 626 parts being usable for most of the car also.

General Comments:

These are a VERY quick car. I had much fun not letting V8 Commodores get in front from the lights. With a reasonable low boost, higher compression turbo motor, and a very low weight (1080 kg), it had more than enough to scare most of my friends and me.

The turbo model has a different gearbox, with tall ratios and limited slip. I could do 90 kph in 2nd gear, 180 in 3rd, 210 in 4th, but I never found out how far 5th went.

The biggest problem I had was getting traction with front wheel drive off the mark. I had put on 205/65/15 tyres on the factory alloys that it came with.

The small turbo restricts the top end (limited to 6250 RPM), which gets asthmatic about 5200-5400 RPM. But this means that it needs very little revs to start boosting, and is a very flexible engine at any revs. I could often feel it start about 2300-2400 RPM.

I had a big stereo with 2x 12" subs, 2x amps (980W total) and 8 other speakers, and the thickness of the rear hatch glass made it great for sound, though I had to install double sided foam tape behind many panels due to rattles.

Overall it is a nice cheap sporty car. I improved the performance, but left it looking stock, and never once was pulled over. It is as light and nimble as many hatchbacks, but has a 2.0L turbo FET model engine, which was built by Mazda (known in Japan as the Magnum Turbo engine).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th January, 2015

1986 Ford Telstar AS TX5 Turbo 2.0 from Australia and New Zealand


$800 eBay special with power, functionality and comfort - hard to believe it's less than 90kW


Drive shaft needs replacing, noticeable when over 4500rpm.

Rear exhaust broken needs replacement.

Rear lock barrel difficult to open, requires a high effort.

The front bumpers, and body side protection moulding fade badly and do not match - sun load testing questionable.

Oil everywhere in engine bay, but still goes hard.

General Comments:

Pretty quick old car, handles OK, still don't love front wheel cars due to torque steer, but pretty good for an oldie.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th May, 2007

3rd Jun 2007, 02:31

Honest, straight to point and true.

4th Nov 2014, 21:57

I own a 86 turbo intercooled and it goes like hell. A great car.

1986 Ford Telstar AS 2.0 carby from Australia and New Zealand


Not a bad car for a first car, but could be better


The front right CV joint has broken.

It used to have an alternator that needed replacing.

The ignition module needed replacing.

General Comments:

The Telstar is a reliable car and goes fairly well.

Occasionlly it runs a bit rough due to the cold weather we have in Mt Gambier (it has a manual choke).

The seats are fairly comfortable around town, but on long trips they do tend to get painful.

I have done a drag in it against a VK commodore and lost by a centimetre due to a near collision with it otherwise I would have blown it out of the water.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 5th April, 2005

12th May 2016, 07:13

Hi Mate.

I read review about your 86 Ford Telstar and was stunned. I also owned a 1986 Ford Telstar Tx5 Turbo Ghia as my first car at 18 years old. It was like a black greyish colour with faded light gray bumpers with a red stripe going through the middle, but anyway what captured my attention about your car was the issues you had with it, because I myself had the exact same problems. First was the alternator needed changing and then the ignition module went; all up I spent around $750.00, but I loved that car; it was my first car and I would like to find one again, but they're very hard to find.