It’s been quite a season of news for Ford. Amongst the headlines has been the recent announcement that the iconic Mustang is, for the first time in its 50 year history, going to be manufactured in right-hand drive. So what is it about this news that has sparked the UK motoring world’s interest and will we soon be seeing Mustangs in their hundreds on the roads of Plymouth and the South West? Vospers Blog investigates the life and times of the Ford Mustang.
It is one of the world’s most iconic vehicles and certainly a diamond in Ford’s crown but it has never before been produced in right-hand drive. This goes most of the way to explaining why, though on these shores we are more than familiar with the Mustang from frequent mentions in pop songs and movies such as Charlies Angels and Diamonds are Forever, most of us have never really seen one on our roads.
Launched at the 1964 New York Motor Show, the Ford Mustang with its short tail and long nose is attributed with giving rise to a new generation of similarly styled cars including the Chevrolet Camaro and the Ford Capri to name just two in a long line. Priced at the time between $2,300 and $4,500 depending on the model, the Mustang with its muscle-car image was a quick success and over 300,000 were sold in the first year alone. Today it is estimated that a huge 10 million have been sold worldwide and this is without ever making the move of creating a right-hand drive model.
So in demand was the Mustang that it is said that Ford Australia actually took the unusual step of ordering 250 Ford Mustangs and having them converted to right-hand drive locally. Demand has been high among celebrities too. Bill Clinton is the proud owner of a 1967 model to name just one US famous face, but closer to home, local car fanatics Richard Hammond and Chris Evans both own Ford Mustangs as part of their collection. In fact, Chris Evans actually owns a Ford Mustang 63 ½. Though the official launch was 1964, a few early cars were available and Evans scooped himself one of the prized originals while living in LA, restoring it to its former glory.
The world was captured though by the news that Ford is set to break with tradition and create a right-hand Ford Mustang for the first time and it is estimated that these models will be available in the UK in early 2015. Interestingly for such an iconic American dream car, this latest version of the Mustang has been designed by a Scotsman – none other than Moray Callum who just happens to be the brother of Ian Callum, design big wig at Jaguar.
So why has Ford taken this step some fifty years on from launch? The company hasn’t revealed their thinking behind this move right now but some experts believe that the new Ford Mustang will fill the need for a sporty two door that the end of the Ford Cougar brought a decade ago. Whatever the reason, fans of the Mustang will be delighted to see it gracing our streets even if there is a year and a half to wait.
The 2015 Ford Mustang is set to be available with a 5.0 litre V8 engine or a marginally more environmentally friendly 2.3 litre four cylinder engine with EcoBoost. Pricing has yet to be revealed so watch this space for more news.