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Thread: The birth of the Mustang / Featuring - Ford PR Video

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    The birth of the Mustang / Featuring - Ford PR Video

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    Before the fabled pony car first hit the streets a team of Ford designers and engineers was assembled to create a concept car to test the public's interest in a sporty new car. One of the treats in the video is seeing Phil Clark at work on the original Mustang logo. We also see Clark hard at work shaping the clay on the buck and his sketches adorn the walls of the studio. It's a tribute to an extremely gifted designer who died when he was only 32 but left behind a legacy of automotive design and a daughter, Holly, who's dedicated to making sure the world remembers her father's contribution to the Mustang.

    This Ford PR film captures the inside story of the team's efforts that put the first Mustang on the road.




    The first Mustang was a pure, two-seater sports car prototype with mid-engine V4 power
    Ford product manager Don Frey had a bright idea for an all-new model. He saw it as a two-seater sports car that would serve as a lower cost competitor for Chevrolet's Corvette.
    The first Mustang was a concept car with pop-up headlights, a mid-engine V4 and racing windshield.
    Though the automotive press was in love with the first Mustang, Ford saw it as having limited appeal.


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    Story Continued....

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    Lee Iacocca suggested the Mustang be converted to a four-seat configuration and relentlessly pushed the car through a thicket of skeptical Ford executives including CEO Henry Ford II who feared another Edsel disaster.

    Ford’s bean-counting financial executives opposed the Mustang during every step of its development and nearly succeeded in killing the project.
    Full size clay mock-up from 1962 shows unusual side treatment
    When Henry Ford II was shown the original Mustang prototype, he thought the back seat was crowded and ordered designers to add another inch of length to the roofline.

    Basing the Mustang on the Falcon compact saved Ford tons of money, making it a high profit earner right out of the gate.
    Pre-production Mustang prototype shows Cougar grill insignia

    Though "Torino" was an early favorite and Henry Ford II wanted to call the new car a “Thunderbird II” or "T-Bird II", early pre-production prototypes were called Ford Cougars and bore an image of a stylized cat in their grills instead of a horse. The Mustang name came from the fastest propellor-driven airplane of WWII, the P-51 fighter.

    The Mustang’s rear fender side scoops were originally designed to send cooling air to the rear brakes but Ford’s bean counters nixed it when they computed that they could save $15 per car by using fake scoops instead.
    Though the Mustang’s list price was $2368, the average buyer added $1000 in options, which were hugely profitable for Ford.

    Ford made a billion dollars in profit (1960s money) off the Mustang in its first year.

    Conducting a publicity campaign for himself and the Mustang, Lee Iacocca flew to New York to promote the new car to Time and Newsweek magazines. Newsweek’s national editor Jim Cannon was so impressed by Iacocca’s enthusiasm for the car; he bought a Mustang from him on the spot.

    Iacocca appeared on both Time and Newsweekcovers the same week.

    Ford's original sales estimates for the Mustang were 100,000 units for its first year but the car sold that many copies in its first 90 days and went on to move over a million cars off showroom floors within its first 18 months.
    The Mustang created the “pony car” genre of automobiles. It was soon joined by Chevrolet Camaro, Pontiac Firebird, AMC Javelin, and Mercury Cougar but only the 'Stang stayed in continuous production for over four decades.

    Continue reading on the Examiner / Examiner.com" Ford Mustang: Secret history revealed - National Classic Autos | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/classic-auto...#ixzz1sKkm4uTZ

    Additional info on the "Pony cars Birth:" http://www.smokinstangs.com/content....and-News-Feeds

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