Mustang mavens, start your engines.
Then sit down and watch the 2-disc set Mustang–The First 50 Years, available now from TM Books & Video.
Fifty years ago the Mustang rolled down a Ford assembly line destined to make life-long fans out of buyers and cause checkered flags to drop at legendary race tracks where Ford cars hadn’t previously won. It is still in production, and those first and latest chapters, as well as all those in between, are documented inthe fascinating new DVD set.
This new production will bring a lump to the throat of those who remember the hoopla that greeted the original Mustang, and also to those who regret missing the excitement. Dealers worried that admiring crowds would get out of hand; one buyer–a Texan, naturally–slept in his Mustang, fearing it would be stolen before his check cleared.
With the Mustang’s unveiling at the Ford Pavilion at the New York World’s Fair on April 17, 1964, the most brilliantly orchestrated public relations and advertising campaign in automotive history got underway. This DVD set tells the story behind the Mustang’s unprecedented success through the eyes of collectors, enthusiasts, journalists and former Ford employees including Mustang designer Gale Halderman, Mustang expert Jeff Burgy, and authors John Clor, Bob Fria and Matt Stone.
Archival footage documents its evolution–from its pre-history, when Henry Ford created the assembly line–through the clay models that defined the sweeping lines that made the Mustang look in motion even when parked at the curb.
Here is how Lee Iacocca, the genius behind the Mustang, accounted for its success: “It wasn’t a car looking for a market. It was a market looking for a car.” Mustang–The First 50 Years traces the social history that proves the wisdom of Iacocca’s words.
The Mustang was tailored to the specs of the Baby Boomer generation: children of the men and women who fought World War II. Their offspring came of age enjoying a disposable income their Depression Era parents couldn’t have dreamed of. The social revolution of the 1960s freed Baby Boomers to enjoy the good life.
Hip was in; staid was passé; and they were looking for a car to match their fun-loving lifestyle. GIs had seen and admired nifty British sports cars in England. But the Boomers were looking for a sleek-looking performance vehicle with room for groceries and kids. Try doing that in a cramped MG or Jaguar without a back seat. Put all those requirements together and presto! you have the Mustang. It put “muscle car” in the dictionary.
The Mustang redefined the Ford brand and became the company’s most popular car since the Model T. “It is arguably the most important vehicle we have ever made,” says Henry Ford III.
Disc 1 (75 minutes)
How Lee Iacocca and team designed a car for the Baby Boomer generation and eventually sold the idea to Henry Ford II, who, after the Edsel debacle, was reluctant to take a chance on another new car. The key role Carroll Shelby played, profiles on Mustang enthusiasts, the Hertz “Rent-a-Racer,” the first three generations of Mustangs, Mustang’s impact on pop culture, and a visit to the Shelby Museum.
Disc 2 (75 minutes)
The next three Mustang generations, the ten most collectible Mustangs, more profiles on Mustang enthusiasts, the Jack Roush Performance Factory, Lee Iacocca’s 45th Anniversary Special Edition Mustang, restomods, D&D Restoration, appraiser Ralph Hubbard, a visit to both Detroit and Chicago auto shows for the introduction of the 2015 Mustang GT plus vintage Mustang TV spots and print ads.