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Mustang: The Original Power Pony

Posted by Carlos on 6/4/2013 to Ford Mustang
On March 9, 1964 the first Ford Mustang rolled off the assembly line. The brainchild of Lee Iacocca, the Mustang’s unforgettable profile and small block powerhouse grabbed the attention of car buyers and aficionados. The Ford Mustang was the first out of the gate in the “pony” car parade and continues to lead the way today. Over the years the Ford engineers would tweak and play with the original design, always building on the past. Like its fans, the Mustang grew up and changed over time but never changed its personality or its breeding.
The first Mustangs offered three different Engines, a 6 cylinder 101 horsepower 170, a 164 hp 260 cid and a 289 cid plant with a 4 barrel carburetor which boasted 210 horses. In a matter of months the engineers managed to coax another 61 horses out of this fire breather with solid lifters.
In 1967 the Mustang body was modified in both length and height and the additional space gained in the engine compartment allowed for installation of a big block 390 cid with 320 ground pounding horses. In 1968 the standard 289 small block was replaced by the 302 with a 4 barrel that produced 320 horses. 1969 introduced the first major body style and also saw the Mustang Boss 302 and Mustang Boss 429 added to the stable. The 429, which was built to NASCAR specifications was a Semi-Hemi. By 1971 the 429 had been tweaked until it produced 429 horses. Between 1971 and 1973 Ford played with the body style and downsized to a 351 cid engine. The energy crisis was looming and the original power pony would soon be retired and the Mustang II a smaller coupe would take its place. In the 2000’s the Mustang would once more lead a revival of pony power.

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