In the early 1960s, Lee Iacocca?"then director of the Ford division at Ford Motor Company?"convinced Henry Ford II to produce a sporty four-seat car aimed at the emerging youth market. That car, essentially a reconfigured and re-skinned Falcon economy car, became the Ford Mustang, and it changed the automotive world like no other car before or since. In Mustang: Fifty Years, acclaimed Mustang writer Donald Farr celebrates this unbroken lineage of muscle: its phenomenal first-year sales, the new "pony car" genre it pioneered, and subsequent models that include the Mustang GT, Shelby GT350, Shelby GT500, Super Cobra Jet, Boss 302 and Boss 429?"all part of a line of American performance cars that continues on to this day. With 400 photos of the USA's iconic sports car and released in tandem with the Mustang's 50th anniversary, Mustang: Fifty Years is a must on the bookshelf of any gearhead or Ford aficionado.
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What Was Your Favorite Mustang? Edsel B. Ford II Weighs In
"You hear people say that all the time. Everyone has a favorite Mustang. Whether it was the first Mustang you owned, the classic Mustang that you always wanted, or the Mustang that roared by you as you sat amazed in the grandstand, there are as many favorite Mustang stories as there were cars built over the last 50 years. Now it’s time to get personal. On December 27, 1964, my father pulled up to the front door of our home. When I looked outside, there was a pearlescent white 1965 Mustang GT fastback. I was speechless! For you, the memory may be just as vivid. After all, what other car has captured the imagination of the American public? From songs like “Mustang Sally” and “First Gear” to movies like Bullitt, Diamonds Are Forever, Bull Durham, and Gone in 60 Seconds, to two U. S. postage stamps, Mustang has become ingrained, not just in American car culture, but in American culture itself. I think about the legendary names that have been part of Mustang’s history. Our cars: the Bosses, King Cobra, SVT Cobra, SVO, Bullitt, Mach I, FR500, GT500, Cobra Jet. The Shelby cars: GT350, GT500-H, GT500-KR, Roush, Steeda, Saleen. Legendary racing names . . . close friends like Carroll Shelby, Mickey Thompson, Jack Roush, Bud Moore, and Bob Tasca, along with legendary race drivers Parnelli Jones, George Follmer, Scott Pruett, Tommy Kendall, John Force, Bob Glidden, Dan Gurney, Jerry Titus, and so many more. Since its stunning debut at the New York World’s Fair in April 1964 to the latest models Ford Motor Company produces today, Mustang has been a car for all people: men and women, young and old, collector or cruiser, racer or restorer. I’ve been fortunate in my life to attend many great Mustang events and have loved to talk about this great car with so many of you. We share a wonderful passion for a great car, and although this book celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Mustang, I know we will be able to share many more Mustang memories in the decades to come. Enjoy!"
FROM THE NEWS BUREAU (Ford Division of Ford Motor Company - April 16, 1964): Styling and features of expensive European road cars are combined with an American mass-production price, compact economy, and traditional Ford quality in the Mustang—a new line of cars from Ford Division of Ford Motor Company. Aimed at the fastest-growing dimension in American motoring—driving for pleasure—the Mustang offers the practicality of a back seat and adequate trunk space in a car comparable in size to the classic twopassenger T hunderbird. Standard equipment of Mustang hardtop and convertible models include sports and luxury features such as bucket seats, molded nylon carpeting, floor-mounted shift for manual and automatic transmissions, all-vinyl interior, padded instr ument panel, and full wheel covers. “In the Mustang, Ford actually ha s created three cars in one,” according to Lee A. Iacocca, Ford Motor Company vice president and Ford Division general manager. “Starting with the economical, fun-to-drive basic Mustang, the buyer may select options to give him a sports car for street or competition use, or a lux ury car geared to either economy or performance. ” Mustang options available to the performanceminded include a select ion of three V-8 engines with up to 271 horsepower, four-speed transmission, quick-ratio steering, Rally-Pac with tachometer and clock, limitedslip d ifferential, and a special handling suspension, and sports tires. Luxury options include a center console, power brakes and steering, automatic transmission, power convertible top, rear-seat radio speaker, remote control tr unk release, vinyl-covered hardtop, and air conditioning. “We believe Mustang represents a new dimension in American motoring at a time when new and old generations of car lovers alike have come full circle to an appreciation of the automobile for its own sake,” says M r. Iacocca. “It offers a combination of driving fun, roominess, and style that permits the Mustang buyer to make of the car almost anything he desires—all at a low initial cost . ”
From the Back Cover:
When Lee Iacocca convinced Henry Ford II to produce a sporty four-seat car aimed at the emerging youth market, a car that eventually became the Ford Mustang, he changed the automotive world. More than a sales phenomenon, the Mustang created its own genre, an entirely new category that became known as the pony car. But Ford was just getting started. The original pony car evolved into the ultimate muscle car, first in versions like the high-performance Mustang GT and the Shelby GT350, then in full-blown supercars like the Shelby GT500, the Super Cobra Jet 428, the Boss 302, and the Boss 429.
Mustang performance continues uninterrupted to this day, stronger than ever. With meticulously researched text from noted Mustang historian Donald Farr and never-before-seen photography, Mustang: Fifty Years celebrates this unbroken lineage of muscle.
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