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Old 01-06-2003, 11:53   #1 (permalink)
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The Trademark Mustang Design

Detroit Auto Show:
DETROIT, Jan. 5, 2003; A Coke bottle, a swoosh, the
hula hoop -- all are instantly recognizable shapes in American pop culture. So too is the unmistakable silhouette of the all-American pony car, the Ford Mustang.
That silhouette is taking on a striking new definition with the
introduction of the Mustang GT coupe and convertible concept cars. The new concepts give a strong indication of the design direction of the next- generation Mustang, due to debut in 2004.
With its signature long hood and short rear deck, Mustang's design has endured for 39 years. Adorning the legendary shape are classic design cues that define Mustang: C-scoops in the sides, three-element tail lamps and the galloping pony in the center of the grille.
The Mustang GT coupe and convertible concepts are clearly the latest evolution in a long line of Mustang models.
"Casual observers will instantly recognize these cars and that is the greatest testament anyone could make to the timeless design of Mustang," says J Mays, Ford Motor Company vice president, Design. "This level of universal acceptance comes not from simply copying past designs, but from melding the character of 39 years into these modern offerings."
The unmistakable design of Mustang is universally appreciated and unequivocally respected. It is a mosaic of historical design and product attributes that has linked three generations of the car together.
The latest incarnations continue the tradition. From a distance, there is no denying the Mustang GT concepts' heritage. Up close, there is no denying their cutting-edge, modern, revolutionary attitude.

Superlative Coupe, Free-Spirited Convertible
Ever since the original in 1964, the Mustang coupe and convertible have been a matched pair. So it was only fitting to introduce the new designs at the same time. Each underscores key elements of the Mustang persona in its own way. The Tungsten Silver coupe interprets the performance edge of
Mustang's heritage while the Redline Red Metallic convertible conjures up images of wind, sunshine and the rocky shores of Big Sur.
Zooming in from the trademark silhouette, an aficionado will appreciate the modern interpretation of the sleek nose of the 1967 models. Yet, the car is uniquely modern thanks to taut surfaces and high-tech hardware. The Mustang GT concepts' adaptive headlamps are like technical jewels. Two
concentric rings are shielded behind a single lens. The rings rotate in a helix pattern to zoom in and out like a professional camera lens. From a single light source, the Mustang GT concepts use fiber optic ribbon to deliver adaptable light levels through their highly focused lenses.
An upward rake angle makes the cars appear to be in motion even while at a standstill. The 20-inch wheels and 13.8-inch vented Brembo(R) disc brakes are pushed out to the corners and anchor the design to the road.
There are no extraneous styling cues on the car. A sharp accent line runs the length of the body just above the rocker panel and culminates in a "C-scoop" design behind the door cutline. The design creates an intentional
visual link with the C-pillar design. The angled appearance of the scoops and their relationship to the door cut give them the look of precise technical integration that combines flair with function. The hard-creased edges of the scoops are mirrored in the design execution on the hood scoops.
The functional hood scoops help the supercharged engine breathe as it churns out nearly 400 horsepower; an aspirational number for muscle car customizers in the 1960s. Naturally, the engine bay is a focal point in both cars. It boasts a MOD 4.6-liter 90-degree cast-iron block V-8 with aluminum
heads, a belt-driven supercharger and a liquid-to-air intercooler.
The vehicle finally comes to a halt with three-element taillamps that span the width of the vehicle, enhancing its proud stance. The sequentially firing tail lamps appear to have no "hot-spots" thanks to a unique design using forward-facing LED projection lamps set against a satin-finished silver
parabola.

The Convertible
Standing next to its counterpart, the Mustang GT convertible concept speaks to another group of followers who yearn for sunshine and open-air driving exhilaration. The body design theme is the same as the coupe. But, the drop top Mustang GT concept gives a completely different look and serves
another purpose. The convertible engages passersby, providing a full view of its inviting interior. It features a distinct "showbar" with a rim of billet-aluminum trim picking up where the instrument panel and console trim leave off.
The Mustang GT concepts take a highly recognizable heritage to the limit by subscribing to a revolutionary formula that mixes successful design cues from the past with artful lines that will sculpt the future.
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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 01-06-2003, 12:01   #2 (permalink)
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Ford looks to the 60s for its Mustang concepts

By Charles E. Ramirez / The Detroit News

DETROIT - Ford Motor Co. rolled out two concepts for the next generation of its legendary Mustang sports car Sunday at the North American International Auto Show.

"The Mustang holds a special place in the hearts of car lovers," said Bill Ford, the company's chairman. "It's become part of our culture."

One of the concept cars, the Mustang GT, is a two-seater fastback coupe. The other is a convertible. Ford plans to start selling the next generation Mustang in 2004.

Both concept vehicles, however, borrow heavily from the Mustang designs from the 1960s - including the Mustang's signature long hood, short rear deck and the C-scoops in the sides. The new pony cars are also powered by a 32-cylinder, 4.6-liter V-8 that generates 400 horsepower.

"We've tied new designs to old memories," J Mays, vice president of design for Ford.
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Old 01-06-2003, 21:35   #3 (permalink)
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Ford Looks to the Past With Mustang GT Concepts
Posted 01/06/03

DETROIT — At its evening press conference Sunday, Ford took some time to review and reminisce about its accomplishments in the previous century before presenting the Mustang GT concept. The format was fitting, however, considering how much the Mustang GT concept draws from the original, 1964.5 Mustang.

A video presentation flashed some significant historical events such as the resignation of President Richard Nixon, the bombing of Pearl Harbor and the sinking of the Titanic, which helped set the stage for going back in time to the beginning of Ford’s days. From there, the video moved forward to the present and chronicled the automaker’s accomplishments in mass production and auto racing.

William Clay Ford Jr., Ford Motor Co. chairman and CEO, opened the evening’s tour through history before turning his attention to the company’s future product lineup.
“Great products have been the cornerstone of our success for 100 years,” he said. “They still are today, and they always will be.” As an example of Ford’s commitment to products, he noted how subsidiary Volvo’s new XC90 sport utility vehicle had just been named the 2003 North American Truck of the Year. Ford also mentioned the company’s increased number of vehicle unveilings at this year’s show. “We are introducing more than 15 new production and concept vehicles at the Detroit show this week, and that’s three times the number that we normally show,” he said.

Following Ford’s introduction, attendees were treated to the arrival of two classic Shelby Mustangs to the Cobo Hall arena floor — a GT 350 and a GT 500 — and the soulful sounds of “Mustang Sally.” That was followed by a blinding indoor fireworks display, which, ultimately, led to the arrival of a silver Mustang GT coupe concept with J Mays, vice president for design at Ford, riding in the passenger seat.

Describing the design philosophy of the Mustang GT concept, Mays spoke plainly. “The formula is simple: you take the really good ideas from the original, not exactly the way they were, but the way most of us in this room remember, you mix them with the good ideas for a new generation and that’s what you get. The thing to remember here is that we are not dealing with the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel — we get to move the angels around a little bit.”

According to Mays, the design of the Mustang GT concept tries to establish new, emotional bonds between individuals and their automobile, such as the ones many people had for the original Ford Mustang.

Establishing those emotional bonds may not be that difficult, considering the numerous design elements the Mustang GT coupe and convertible concepts draw from the early days of the Mustang, and the similarities were plain to see with the classic examples present on the arena floor.

The headlight configuration and grille shape of the Mustang GT concept mimics the originals, with round headlamps and the forward-swept orientation of the grille. Mustangs have long had side scoops, and the Mustang GT concept continues that tradition, too. The Mustang GT coupe also incorporates fastback styling — a Mustang trademark from its early days. Though the Mustang GT concept’s taillights are less likely than some of its other design characteristics to spark comparisons to the original Mustang’s, the resemblance is still there, albeit somewhat exaggerated.

The drivetrain and platform, however, are entirely modern. Beginning with a highly modified Ford Thunderbird platform, the Mustang GT concept evolved. Powered by a supercharged 4.6-liter V-8 engine, the rear-wheel-drive Mustang GT concept’s estimated output is 400 horsepower and 390 pounds-feet of torque. A six-speed-manual transmission is fitted in the coupe, while the convertible employs a five-speed-automatic gearbox. Putting the power effectively to the pavement is the job of the large, BFGoodrich g-force T/A tires, which ride on 20-inch wheels. Large, Brembo units handle braking responsibilities.

The interior is equally modern with its billet-aluminum trim on the dashboard, steering-wheel spokes and console, which helps to maintain the clean, functional appearance of the driving environment. The bucket seats are thin, performance-oriented racing-style units swathed in red leather.

With a completely redesigned Mustang due out in 2004, the Mustang GT coupe and convertible concepts give a strong indication of the direction in which the pony car is headed: back to its roots.

—Reported by Mike Hanley, cars.com;
Images by Casey Spring for cars.com;
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