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Old 04-15-2003, 08:29   #1 (permalink)
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Mustang Time Line

Icons In Time: Ford Mustang
The CarConnection
by Mike Davis 4/13/2003

1962
Mustang I show car with mid-ship V-4 debuts Mustang name, somedesign cues.

1963
Mustang II show car, a prototype of production model, unveiled tocontinue the tease.

1964
April 17 — Mustang production car introduced at N.Y. World’s Fair;goes on sale in coupe and convertible versions on 108-inch wheelbase with choice of 170-cid inline six, 260-cid V-8, or three 289-cid V-8s.


October 1 — fastback body added to Mustang lineup, permitting intro of Shelby Mustang GT-350.

1965
April 17 — 418,000 Mustangs sold in first year.


October 1 — 1966 models introduced with 170 six and 260 V-8 dropped in favor of 200 six and 289 V-8; “Six and the Single Girl” advertising campaign plays on pop sociology book.

1966
September 30 — introduction of 1967 Mustang with all-new, larger body and provision for 390-cid V-8 engines; muscle-car era spreads

1967
September — Intro of 1968 model with added 302-cid, 427-cid, and 428-cid V-8 engine options.

1968
September — Introduction of 1969 Mustang with quad headlamps, larger body (six inches longer and 240 pounds heavier than the original); 289-cid and 427-cid V-8s dropped and 250-cid six and 351-cid V-8 options added; Boss 302, Mach I and Cobra Jet models; last year for Shelby Mustangs.

1970
September 19 — Introduction of 1971 Mustang with new body on 109-inch wheelbase, now nearly 500 pounds heavier than original, partly due to federally mandated safety equipment; 200-cid six dropped and 429-cid V-8 options have replaced 428s.

1971
September 24 — 1972 models introduced, still in three body styles, coupe, convertible and fastback, but muscle begins to shrink with elimination of 429s

1972
Fall — Model year 1973 Mustangs are the last of the original concept for some years and likewise feature Ford Motor Company’s last convertible for a decade.

1973
Mid-year — Pinto-based 1974 Mustang II introduced as “luxury sub-compact” powered by choice of 140-cid four or imported Ford of Europe 171-cid V-6; shorter but heavier than original ’Tang, it was mounted on a 96.2-inch wheelbase in coupe and fastback configurations; offerings included “luxury” Ghia and “sheep in wolf’s clothing” Mach I models.

1974
September — 1975 Mustang II introduced with optional 5.0-liter (302-cid) V-8 as Ford switched to metric engine designations; economy "MPG" model introduced mid-year.

1976
October 1 — 1977 Mustang II model intro with copy-cat “poor man’s convertible” T-roof option.

1978
October 6 — Mini-Mustang replaced by all-new 1979 Mustang on 100.4-inch Fox chassis wheelbase; weight back to under 2450 pounds like original ’65 in two bodies, coupe and hatchback, with choice of 2.3-liter four, turbo 2.3-liter four, 2.8-liter V-6 or 5.0-liter V-8.

1979
October 12 — Intro of 1980 model offered with 3.3-liter (200-cid) straight six in place of imported 2.8 V-6, and downsized 4.2-liter V-8 in place of 5.0.

1981
September 24 — 1982 model Mustang brings back the 5.0 as Ford learned how to comply with fuel economy regulations.

1982
November 5 — return of the Mustang convertible as a 1983 model, first since end of 1973 run; also new, a 3.8-liter V-6, plus GT models with choice of turbo four or 5.0-liter V-8 for a two-model-year run.

1983
September 22 — Introduction of 1984 models including SVO Mustang with turbo four.

1986
October 2 — Intro of restyled 1987 Mustang; SVO model eliminated andengine choices reduced to venerable 2.3 Four and 5.0 V-8.

1994
Model year 1994 Mustang with all-new rounded body in convertible and coupe versions on longer 101.3-inch wheelbase and only two engine choices: base 3.8-liter V-6 and 5.0-liter V-8.

1996
For 1996 Mustang, 5.0-liter V-8 replaced by new 4.6 in both SOHC andDOHC versions.

1998
December — 1999 Model with less rounded sheetmetal introduced.

1999
Mustang featured on a U.S. postage stamp.

2003
Mustang for 2003 little-changed from 1999 — or, for that matter, 1994 model — but still sells at enviable clip; number one in convertible sales through 2002.
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My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

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Old 04-15-2003, 15:13   #2 (permalink)
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Good stuff Stacy, thanks. Took a print and will put it in with my reference material.

cheers
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Old 04-15-2003, 20:33   #3 (permalink)
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Your welcome Blurter, RPO83 "Luke" had posted the same thing in the Ford World Wide News forum awhile back. I was going to post before he did in a sticky post we were going to name Ford 100 years. But, out of all the Ford cars, Mustang and the Model T were the only cars I could find any info on. BTW, I like your avator pic.
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My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
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Old 04-24-2003, 04:59   #4 (permalink)
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Nice details in the timeline. Some great Mustangs produced in that time too.
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Old 05-08-2003, 02:35   #5 (permalink)
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lol wish I had one of those 64 stangs with 3 289s in it :)
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Old 05-19-2003, 00:14   #6 (permalink)
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Pony car was birth of hot-rod culture.All-American Mustang quickly became an icon

Monday, May 19, 2003
100 Years of Ford: The Cars
By Bill Vlasic / The Detroit News
Charles V. Tines / The Detroit News

DEARBORN -- All eyes locked on Lee Iacocca when he strode into the design studio at Ford Motor Co. in the late summer of 1962.

Without a word, the mercurial head of the Ford division studied the sleek, red concept car with the elongated hood, Ferrari-style front end and stubby rear deck.

Then, ever so slowly, Iacocca began rolling his ever-present cigar over and over in his fingers -- just the sign that Joseph Oros was hoping for.

"When Lee did that," said Oros, chief of Ford division design, "we knew he was excited."

And with that gesture, the Ford Mustang was born.

Launched two years later at the 1964 World's Fair in New York, the Mustang took the U.S. auto market by storm. Fast, sexy and affordable, Ford's new "pony car" captured the imagination of a generation -- and never lost it.

After 39 years and nearly 8 million sold, the Mustang remains the most popular icon of the automaker, celebrating its 100th anniversary.

Copied by competitors, celebrated in pop culture, always identifiable despite radical redesigns, the Mustang is an indelible link to Ford's storied past and a crucial component of its future success.

Ford is counting on the all-new 2005 Mustang, due out next year, to fuel its nascent financial turnaround.

While other cars and trucks will certainly play a role in Ford's revival, there is no substitute for a hot, new Mustang.

"This is a flag-waving, American original as much as Harley-Davidson motorcycles, Levi jeans, Elvis Presley and Marilyn Monroe," said J Mays, Ford's chief designer. "It is ingrained in our culture."

But back in the early 1960s, Ford executives had no idea the Mustang, named after the famed fighter aircraft of World War II, would earn an exalted place in automotive history.

Internal forecasts pegged the Mustang's first-year volume at 80,000 cars. In the first 18 months, Ford sold a million.

"We didn't know what we had," Iacocca said. "We lucked out. It was a home run."

Gun-shy after Edsel

It was hardly the ideal time for Ford to gamble on a risky new model.

Company executives were reeling in 1962 from the spectacular failure of the Edsel, perhaps the most ridiculed automobile of all time.

Ford was still writing off the losses when Iacocca and his team proposed building a low-priced sports car targeted at baby boomers coming of age.

Four times, Iacocca and his aides pitched the idea to Chairman Henry Ford II and other top execs. Four times, it was rejected outright.

Then one afternoon, Henry Ford II stopped by the design studio and grabbed Donald Frey, product manager for the Ford division.

"Henry said, 'I'm tired of hearing about your (expletive) car,' " Frey said. "He said, 'Build it, but it's your ass if it doesn't sell.' I guess we had worn him down."

Iacocca laid down the guidelines for the then-unnamed "sporty Ford." It had to be a four-seater, but lightweight. The car needed a dash of European elegance, but a bargain-basement sticker price. Above all, the new model had to, in Frey's words, exude "pizzazz."

To keep costs down, the car would be built on the existing chassis of the Falcon, and many of its parts borrowed from other vehicles. But getting the right design proved problematic from the start.

At least eight variations were turned down flat by Henry Ford II. In desperation, Iacocca ordered an in-house competition among design teams from Lincoln-Mercury, the advanced product staff and the Ford division.

Oros gathered 35 of his designers together to map out their plan.

"I wanted a European feel with a thin bumper, elliptical headlights and a Ferrari-type front," he said. "In the center of the grille I liked a strong motif, like the Maserati trident."

When Iacocca chose his team's design over six others, Oros knew he still had one more hurdle to clear.

"Mr. Ford came down and wanted to sit in it," Oros said. "The only thing he said was, 'Joe, I think we need a little more headroom.' "

The production team worked at a feverish pace to meet a deadline of April 17, 1964 -- when the Mustang would be unveiled at the Ford Pavilion at the New York World's Fair.

That day, Ford planned to flood newspapers and magazines with two-page ads that showed the car in silhouette along with two, simple messages: "The Unexpected," and "$2,368."

The reaction stunned even Iacocca. Consumers swamped Ford dealerships across the country. Some slept outside showrooms overnight to get first crack at buying a Mustang.

Media coverage flew off the charts. In one week, both Time and Newsweek featured Iacocca and the Mustang on their covers, an honor usually reserved for world statesmen and show-business superstars.

He went on to become president of Ford, chairman of Chrysler Corp., and the author of two best-selling autobiographies. But even today, at age 78, Iacocca remembers the early days of the Mustang as the most thrilling chapter of his legendary career.

"The demographics on that car was everybody, and I mean everybody," he said. "Back then, that's when the adrenaline flowed."

Evolution of the pony

As its popularity soared, the Mustang evolved. The "2+2" fastback version arrived in 1965, followed by the high-performance "GT 350" model created by racing legend Carroll Shelby.

Ford dedicated three factories to produce the car, a testament to the Mustang's unique appeal. Its marketing success was matched only by the financial windfall the Mustang generated for Ford.

In its first two years, the Mustang earned an estimated $1.1 billion in profits. "That was the majority of the profits of the company worldwide," Frey said.

America's car became a cultural phenomenon. In 1966, soul singer Wilson Pickett immortalized it in his hit record, "Mustang Sally." Two years later, movie audiences were thrilled by the car-chase scene in "Bullitt" when Steve McQueen roared through the streets of San Francisco in a dark green, 1968 Mustang GT Fastback.

The Mustang embodied a decade of dramatic change, from the Vietnam War protests to the women's liberation movement to the sexual revolution.

Moreover, the spunky little sports car with the galloping horse on its grille touched a chord in consumers hungry for speed and style in their lives.

"Before Mustang, sports cars were for wealthy people," said Bill Johnson, president of the 9,200-member Mustang Club of America. "All of a sudden, everybody could afford one."

But as time passed, the pony car packed on weight. Bigger engines and technology required to reduce emissions made the Mustang heavier and less nimble. All of a sudden, the light, taut Mustang grew into a brutish muscle car.

By 1972, sales plunged to their lowest point since the car's introduction. "Our pony car turned into a fat pig," Iacocca said.

As the Mustang lost its sparkle, Ford's rivals picked up the slack. General Motors Corp. scored with its twin sports cars, the Chevrolet Camaro and Pontiac Firebird, and Chrysler found a niche with the Plymouth Barracuda.

To combat stalling sales, Ford drastically downsized the Mustang. The Mustang II, which debuted in 1974, was a considerably smaller car built atop the chassis of the subcompact Pinto.

Underpowered and oddly proportioned, the Mustang II was a full foot shorter than its predecessor and woefully slow. But Ford got lucky. The new model arrived on the heels of the Arab oil embargo, and sales jumped 80 percent as anxious consumers accepted less power in exchange for better fuel economy.

Yet as the 1970s wore on, sales tapered off. Worse still, the Mustang lost its youthful aura and cutting-edge image.

"We crapped out," Iacocca said. "We had to get it smaller, but it broke the character of the car."


Mustang hits middle age


A good pony, however, is hard to keep down. Ford scrapped the Pinto platform for the 1979 Mustang. Instead, engineers employed a larger chassis, and designers gave the car an edgy, angular look.

The new model outsold the Camaro for the first time in four years. But the momentum proved short-lived. The Mustang posted respectable sales in the 1980s, but nowhere near what it did in its heyday.

Maturing baby boomers moved on to new vehicles better suited to their changing lifestyles. Chrysler, under the leadership of Iacocca, invented the minivan to accommodate young families. The roomy, sensible Taurus sedan supplanted the Mustang as Ford's crown jewel.

The Mustang had entered the automotive equivalent of middle age. Inside Ford, executives questioned its relevance in a market moving increasingly toward sport-utilities and light trucks.

By 1989, Ford product planners were considering the unthinkable: basing the next-generation Mustang on a compact coupe under development by Mazda Motor Corp., Ford's Japanese affiliate.

A Japanese Mustang? John Coletti, for one, couldn't handle that.

A veteran of Ford's racing program, Coletti was the design manager for Mustang when he first saw the Mazda-based concept.

"We were walking through the design studio and I said, 'What is that?' " Coletti said. "I was told that's the new Mustang. 'Well,' I said, 'that may be a lot of things, but a Mustang it ain't.' "

Ford Chairman Alex Trotman assigned Coletti to come up with an alternative. He formed a small project team, and hunkered down in a vacant warehouse in Dearborn. The group tapped into the designs of classic Mustangs, and vowed to restore the car's high-performance image.

When it hit showrooms, the 1994 model recaptured some of Mustang's lost magic. But Ford is betting the best may be yet to come.


Chance of a lifetime


The first Mustang that Hau Thai-Tang ever saw was on the streets of Saigon nearly 30 years ago. A native of Vietnam, he recalled how U.S.O. shows for American GIs often included customized Mustangs to give the troops a taste of home.

Now he's the chief engineer on the 2005 Mustang and ready to make his mark on the next generation of Ford's most valuable nameplate.

At his initial meeting with his core team of 100 staffers, Thai-Tang summed up the opportunity before them.

"Many people we work with will retire from Ford without ever having the chance you have," he told the group.

Shown as a concept car at the 2003 North American International Auto Show, the next Mustang harkens back to the glory days. Its long hood, short deck, sculpted sides and signature three-paneled taillights conjure up visions of the '60s.

In fact, when the concept was shown to Ford's top brass, a mint-condition, 1967 model was parked alongside for comparison.

"We wanted to capture the essence of the car," said Mays, Ford's design chief. "We looked at what made the best Mustangs good, and the lesser Mustangs not as good."

Thai-Tang took the same approach to the guts of the car. "Our goals were to be fun, fast and affordable," he said.

Gone is the old chassis and platform used for 15 years, which sparked controversy over the location of the fuel tank and its connection to a series of fiery, rear-impact collisions. Instead, Ford officials say the next Mustang will get its own new chassis.

Beyond that, the engineering team focused on beefing up the ride, handling and power. No detail escaped their attention. To get just the right, throaty exhaust sound, Thai-Tang's team made a digital recording of the 1968 Mustang in the movie "Bullitt," and tuned the new car's tailpipe to match it.

It's been a delicate balancing act of paying homage to the past while christening a new Mustang for the 21st century.

"When you have a 40-year family tree, you don't chop it down and plant a new one," Thai-Tang said.

That's music to the ears of people like Jeffrey Ray. The 52-year-old Royal Oak businessman recently realized his dream of owning a vintage 'Stang when he bought a bright orange, 1965-model powered by Ford's fabled 289-cubic-inch, V-8 engine.

"I've been looking for this car for 10 years," Ray said. "It's just amazing."

As he showed off his newfound love, Ray caressed its hood and polished up the die-cast Mustang ornament on the grille. At that moment, the emotions associated with the Mustang were as plain as the grin on Ray's face.

Then he slid into the driver's seat, put on a pair of dark shades, and turned the key. The V-8 came alive with a growl.

"This," he said, "is the best part."

Then he stepped on it, the tires squealing as he laid rubber and tore down the street.

Somewhere, Lee Iacocca was twirling his cigar again.

(Photo) INSTANT HIT: Americans immediately embraced the Mustang's affordable price, power and fast lines - pushing sales to over 1 million within 18 months and making it a hot collector item. Jeffrey Ray of Royal Oak purchased a 1965 Mustang just two weeks ago.
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My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
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Old 05-19-2003, 00:16   #7 (permalink)
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HONORED ICON: Calling it one of just 15 icons of the 1960s, the Postal Service honored the Mustang with a first class stamp in 1999.
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My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
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Old 05-19-2003, 00:21   #8 (permalink)
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SCREEN STAR: Actor Steve McQueen helped fuel the Mustang legend in the movie "Bullitt," a slice of Americana that lives on today in a toy version of the popular car.
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My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
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Old 05-19-2003, 00:25   #9 (permalink)
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RECAPTURING MAGIC: In January, Ford Chairman Bill Ford Jr. unveiled the next-generation Mustang, a model the automaker hopes will recapture the magic of its past.
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My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
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Old 05-19-2003, 00:26   #10 (permalink)
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Ford is counting on the 2005 Mustang to fuel its turnaround. Hau Thai-Tang, Mustang chief engineer, is flanked by the 2005 Mustang concept at the Ford Dearborn Test Track.
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My first car was a 67 Mustang Coupe, 2nd one was a 67 Cougar XR-7, 3rd one was a 66 Mustang Coupe. Why did I get rid of these cars for ? I know why, because I'm stupid, stupid, stupid.

My next Ford.....
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