Film Flashback: Ford Mustang

Ford Motor is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Mustang, by far its most enduring model line.

The first Mustangs were introduced during the 1964 model year, produced in limited numbers. In 1965, the Mustang went into full production. One of the many buyers of the ’65 Mustang was my dad. It was a car he couldn’t resist, and the price was just right. Though the Mustang was meant to appeal to fast car aficionados, ours was a family car.

my dad’s 1965 Mustang, my dog Peanuts

 

washing the Mustang

 

Under the hood, a 287 cubic-inch V8 with a 4-barrel carburetor and power steering included. A couple of the older cousins, on my dad’s side, were so impressed with his Mustang, they had to buy their own.

the other Mustangs

 

Stella owned the dark 1966 Mustang shown above, Ernie had the one parked in the driveway (also a 1966) shown above. Both models had V6 engines rather than the 287 V8.

My dad thought when Ford had made the Mustang larger, with a bigger engine, they had ruined the car. And, he was right in that respect. Its sales began to decline in the early 1970s. Ford muddled and fiddled with its design, eventually reducing its size by 1976. The resized Mustang was no larger than their other “pony” car, the Pinto. Both shared the same engine and transmission, possibly even the frame.

Though there was talk about returning the Mustang to its roots and going back to the 287 V8, it didn’t. And, while the newer Mustangs may have some of the lines of the early Mustangs, they’ll never be like those early models. With a lot of power and the best engine ever made.

 

About the photos

These photos were taken by my sister, Ginny, in 1966 using roll film. Scanned from print images.

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