The Ford Mustang is an American automobile, originally based on the Ford Falcon compact. The first production Mustang rolled off the assembly line in Dearborn, Michigan on March 9, 1964, and was introduced to the public at the New York World's Fair on April 17, 1964, and via all three American television networks on April 19. It was one of the most successful product launch in automotive history.
The Mustang sold over one million units in its first 18 months on the market.. The Mustang remains in production today after 43 years and several revisions.
The Mustang grew larger and heavier with each passing year culminating with the 1971-73 models, designed under the supervision of Ford's new product design manager, Semon "Bunkie" Knudsen, originally of General Motors. Knudsen's turn at the helm would see the last high-performance big-block Mustang, 1971's 375 hp 429 Super Cobra Jet.
Unfortunately, that very same body style was designed for the sole purpose of big-block installation versions, and was limited to a maximum of 351 CID (5.8 L) in 1972 and 1973, due to extremely strict U.S. emission control regulations and low demand for big block musclecars due to high insurance premiums. Two more high-performance engines were introduced in 1972, the 351 "HO" and 351 Cobra Jet. Both cars were excellent performers, but at nowhere near the level of the Boss cars and original Cobra Jet.
Car companies switched from "gross" to "net" power and torque ratings in 1972, and this coincided with the manufacturers making low-compression motors with different, far more restrictive induction systems, making it difficult to compare power and torque ratings. Very much a different car than in 1964, Ford was deluged with mail from fans of the original car who demanded that the Mustang be returned to the way it had been.
SportsRoof was Fords brand name for "fastback." The SportsRoof moniker was used for 1969 onwards for sharply included rear-deck coupes that were their "sporty" body design.