See All Facts and Figures – 1964-1965 Mustang
Bonus – 2024 Mustang All Facts and Figures
Cars have changed big time since the day “The Unexpected” Mustang was introduced in April of 1964. The original car was “unexpected”, not because it was a huge departure in engineering, manufacturing, and technology, but because the concept of a smaller, room for four, inexpensive mini Thunderbird hit the market spot on.
Was it really that radical that Ford could call it “the unexpected”? In reality, the Mustang was based on the then popular Ford Falcon – using a good deal of the tooling, power trains, and even interior parts and pieces; with the most noticeable, the Falcon’s dashboard.
But it was unexpected, because it delivered a car to a whole new segment of buyers, much like the Pontiac GTO did for mid-sized cars. And like the GTO, it was designed and built using the parts bin. History shows that the styling and market niche the Mustang attacked was spot on. And no one has ever argued that, with a million cars produced from April 1964 to mid-1966. That’s astounding for any new car introduction – or any production car at all.
It truly was “Unexpected”.
Want to learn more? Click the button below!
Selling the New Mustang
In Period Print Media
Once announced, Ford took every effort to get heavy press coverage. Print advertising, press photos, and specifications were released to the motoring press showing or demonstrating each version and model from the I-6 to the 271 HP “Hi-Po” V-8. They inserted references to the new car in a 1964 1/2 specific brochure, and they even released technical documentation to the press intro day of April 13, 1964. See:
- “Ford Mustang” – April 1964 Mustang Brochure
- “The New Ford Mustang“ – Confidential Technical Press Packet April 13, 1964
- “$2,368 and We’re Not Fooling”” – Special four-page Print Ad including “The Unexpected”
- “Road Research Report: Ford Mustang – Car and Driver Magazine, May 1964
In Period Road Tests
Ford made sure that the Mustang in all series and models was made available to magazines and newspapers for testing. Here are some examples:
- “1965 Mustang Intro and Road Test“ – May 1964 Car Life magazine
- “Ford’s Wildest Mustang“ – June 1964 Hot Rod magazine
In late 1964 and into 1965 Ford made sure all variants of the car were tested – including the new 2+2 fastback body style.
- “Mustang 6-Cyl.“ – June 1965 Car Life magazine
- “Mustang 2+2 Road Test“ – January 1965 Motor Trend magazine
In Professional Racing
It didn’t take long for Ford to get the Mustang involved in all types of racing – including drag racing, even so far as to stuff the famous 427 FE big block in a Mustang chassis.
“. . . the run of the mill steed from Dearborn is shamed by the performance of a stablemate from Oaklawn, IL. This particular example of the breed turns 130 MPH in 11 sec.!” Car Life magazine, March 1965.
On another front, Ford assisted Carroll Shelby with his new charge – the Mustang GT 350
“Carroll Shelby has now come up with a Ford-Powered-by-Cobra. The Ford in question is the ‘fastback’ Mustang, and Shelby’s merry men have stuffed a burr of some size and effectiveness under its metaphorical saddle. The result is that it has undergone a complete change of character. This new car, called the Mustang GT 350, and known familiarly as the Shelby Mustang, . . . it certainly is a lot more interesting.” the Car and Driver magazine testers.
A Road Test of a 1965
Shelby GT 350
Every automobile magazine tested both the standard Mustang and the GT 350 in 1965. In the regular Mustang kudos were given to both the Hi-Po fastback (2+2) and the coupe. But whatever positive was said about those two was doubled when it came to the GT 350.
Carroll and his staff worked magic with not only the suspension and steering, but managed to extract about 30 more HP from the 289 CID V-8 without making it so hyper that one could not drive it. An drive it you will because there is only room for one passenger, as the rear seats in the ’65 model were removed.
Exhaust noise was as if was not muffled, as the excuse for one was just an expanded portion of the pipe on its way out just ahead of the rear wheels, and the rear suspension was so modified that there was no way to fit the rear seats. But it was as fast a stink and handled like no other Mustang and it was ultra- competitive in SCCA Class B, the goal that Ford and Shelby had.
The 1966 model wold be a bit more civilized and an automatic transmission model would be available from Hertz. The rest, as they say, would be history.
Don’t forget to get more details on the GT 350 from the May 1965 Motor Trend Magazine HERE.
of the 1964-1966 Mustang
Ford submitted these specifications to the American Automobile Manufacturers Association who placed them is research files that were retrievable in paper. We have captured those for the 1964 – 1966 years.
(A typical cover sheet and page 2 are shown at right).
We can make available upon request all AAMA Specifications Sheets from 1964 through 2003!
You can see and download these accurate technical descriptions:
Wilson Pickett Memorializes
the 1964-1966 Mustang in Song
American R&B, soul, rock & roll singer and songwriter Wilson Pickett recorded this popular version of “Mustang Sally” in 1966 that climbed to #6 on the R&B charts and #23 on the Pop charts. It ranks on the Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. The song became synonymous with the car.
Although Pickett’s personal life was troubled, he was repeatedly honored for his contributions to music including being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1991. He was a popular composer, writing songs for Led Zeppelin, Van Halen, The Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, Grateful Dead, Booker T. & the MGs, Genesis, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Hootie & the Blowfish, Bruce Springsteen, Los Lobos, among others.
You can listen to the song here:
2024 Mustang High Resolution
Press Photos Downloads
We have worked with the Ford Media organization to collect many of the high quality Press Photos of the 2024 Mustang. If you have interest in viewing or downloading these images, please click on the link below.
Te image above is an example of the high quality press photos available on our website. If you would like to access these images, click the button at left.
The High Performance
289 CID V-8 Exposed
The High Performance (“Hi-Po”) 289 CID V-8 was introduced in 1963 as an option on the mid-size Ford Fairlane. It was, to a great extent a “cover” for what would be the high output V-8 for the soon to released Mustang.
How did Ford anticipate the need for this engine, how did the small block Ford grow in it’s first two years of delivery, and what exactly did Ford do to get the engine to produce such effective horsepower – these questions will be answered in the attached article.
While 271 HP from 289 CID may not seem like much today, in 1963-64, 0.95 HP per cubic inch rivaled the small block non-Corvette Chevrolet small block and exceeded any small block V-8 developed by AMC, Studebaker, or Chrysler. We’ll dig into the Hi-Po and also discuss what Carroll Shelby did to get that same engine just past the Holy Grail of 1.00 HP per CID.