Friday Ford, Mustang/Winter Solstice Edition

As a morning person (believe me, that’s something I could not have imagined happening 20 years ago), I am not a fan of winter and its late sunrises. Breakfast is MY meal and I like to eat it out of the house, but I do not see well enough in the dark to drive. Today, of course, is the first day of astronomical winter—the winter solstice (in the Northern Hemisphere). This means that the North Pole is tilted its farthest away from the Sun. Today also marks the end of declining length of daylight for the Northern Hemisphere.

How much of a morning person have I become? Once every summer I make a 5 AM trek to our “local” Wegmans to go grocery shopping. (Wegmans is the greatest grocery store/supermarket in history: by far, bar none, hands down.) The reason the word “local” is in quotes is because it’s almost 20 miles, one way, from our house. It is still our primary supermarket.

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Although I will never have “warm and fuzzy” feelings about the Ford Motor Company because of the many despicable acts of the company founder, only a blind ideologue would not acknowledge the significance of the Ford Mustang. In many books, including the standard catalog of® books and the various American Cars encyclopedias by the Auto Editors of Consumer Guide®, the Mustang and its history are given its own chapter apart from that of the rest of the Ford company.

As best as I could estimate, almost ten million Mustangs (about 9.62 million to be a little more precise) were manufactured from its introduction in April, 1964 through 2017. The Mustang set an all-time record for first-year new model sales; from the introduction as a 1965 model year car in April of 1964 until the switch to the 1966 model year in August, 1965, almost 700,000 Mustangs were sold.

I agree with most auto “experts” in that the keys to the Mustang’s success were its styling and its versatility. For example, for 1968 model year Mustangs they were available with seven different engines ranging from a 115 HP, 200 cubic-inch inline six-cylinder to a 335 HP, 428 cubic-inch V-8.

The car did not end up as it was originally conceived. To wit:

These are two photos I took at the AACA Museum in Hershey, Pennsylvania. As noted here, the first Mustang was this two-seat car built on a very small 90-inch wheelbase. Although the car solicited very positive feedback from those who saw it at various venues, “father of the Mustang” Lee Iacocca decided, “That’s sure not the car we want to build because it can’t be a volume car. It’s too far out.”

Ultimately, of course, the Mustang was designed with three body styles on the Ford Falcon platform. By far, the most popular of the three styles on the 108-inch wheelbase car was this:

https://cdn.silodrome.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/1965-Ford-Mustang-1.jpg

From silodrome.com a picture of a 1965 Ford Mustang hardtop coupe. This style represented almost three-fourths of all Mustang sales for its first model year. When I was very young I had an affinity for the “fastback” coupe, but now my favorite Mustang body style is this one from the beginning of Mustang production through 1968.

Again from silodrome.com a picture of a 1968 “Bullitt-spec” Mustang fastback:

https://cdn.silodrome.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/1968-Ford-Mustang-Bullitt-7.jpg

No explanation needed…

I have complained on this blog about what I consider to be the “excessive” number of Mustangs/Shelbys sold at auctions like Barrett-Jackson and Mecum. I know auction houses are at the mercy of consignors and potential buyers. I also fully appreciate the significance of the Mustang and its variants. I still would like to see more Studebaker GT Hawks and Buick Wildcats at auctions, but I’m not in charge even though I’d like to be, if just for a little while. 🙂

Does anyone want to offer their thoughts on the Mustang or automobile auctions? I’m all ears, or I guess in this venue I’m all eyes.

 

#somanycarsjustonelife

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It’s Monday

As I wrote here, Friday doesn’t have the same meaning for someone like me who is (involuntarily) retired as it does for someone in a full-time job. Well, of course, neither does Monday. In all of my non-baseball office jobs I dreaded Monday. As I keep writing virtually nothing in life is all good or all bad; everything is a trade-off. As I have also written, the fact that someone with my skills and experience cannot find a meaningful and fulfilling work situation is not a good sign for America, even if it’s just a sample size of one. I don’t even want to work full-time, but I would relish a part-time or consulting role in which I can use my combination of analytical and communication skills to help a company make decisions.

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I have written about Patrick Mahomes, the starting quarterback for the Kansas City Chiefs, a couple of times. Between fatigue and the rerun of a Mecum auction I missed almost all of last night’s Chiefs-Patriots game, which apparently was one for the ages. Since I didn’t watch maybe I shouldn’t comment, but 1) the fact that the Chiefs came back to take the lead at Foxboro bodes well for them and 2) NO penalties against the Patriots is very suspicious to me. It is well-known that the Chiefs’ defense is suspect, but I think the Patriots’ defense is not that good, either.

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I have no idea why Disaffected Musings already has dozens of views today, supposedly all from Canada, from very few unique visitors. It’s actually a little disturbing because it seems like a prank or even like a hack. ALL blog hosting platforms should understand that bloggers have no control over what strangers do. Since the beginning of this month the number of views/visitors for Disaffected Musings has increased dramatically, for which I am grateful, but that increase seems organic unlike today’s activity.

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A shout-out to Lee Iacocca who is, hopefully, celebrating his 94th birthday today. Iacocca is one of the most significant figures in the history of the American automotive industry. For all that he accomplished, he will probably always be most associated with his role in bringing this car to market:

See the source image

From silodrome.com a picture of a 1965 Ford Mustang. While I am tired of seeing an endless parade of Mustangs/Shelbys at car auctions I do appreciate the significance of the car. I have recently developed an affinity for the hardtop coupe (pictured above) of the first generation Mustangs up through 1968.

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From autoevolution.com a picture of a rendering by a Korean company, KKS Studios, of the upcoming C8 Corvette:

A lot of Ferrari 488 in that design as the autoevolution article points out. So many drawings and renderings have emerged regarding the C8 Corvette that it’s almost too many, almost. I still think the C2 Corvette (1963-1967) is the best looking American car ever (yes, I broke the moratorium which lasted 18 days) and with a restomod I can get a C7 in performance that looks like a C2. In any event, here’s hoping that the C8 will debut early in 2019.