- Original sheet metal
- True Ram Air car
- Q-code 351cid V8
- 4-speed manual transmission
- Ford 9-inch rear / 3.25 gears
- Original Ford service manuals
Throughout the years, the Mustang has truly been everything to everyone. It's spanned several pricing levels, performance levels – it even shared DNA with the Ford Pinto during the mid-to-late 70s. Through it all, the car remained successful and nearly every early variation has found its place in the collector market. Right now, it's all about the pre-1971 cars, but the tide is rising for examples like this awesome 1972 Mustang Mach 1. With aggressive styling, an original 351cid V8 and nearly every option on the order form, this frame-up restored Ford has all the hallmarks of a desirable collector car at a driver-friendly price. If hitting the highway in one of Detroit's final muscle cars sounds good to you, take a closer look at this killer '72 Mustang Mach 1.
We'll start by highlighting the options that this Mustang left the assembly line with:
Gold Glow / 6F / Color Glow Paint
351cid 4V 8-Cylinder Engine
Body Side Tape Stripe
Black ¾ Vinyl Roof
Four-Speed Manual Transmission w/ Hurst Shifter
F70x14 Wide Oval Belted Tires
BSW Tires / Raised White Letters
Rear Deck Spoiler
Rim Blow Deluxe Steering Wheel
Sport Deck Rear Seat
Power Front Disc Brakes
Air Conditioning – Selectaire
Stereosonic Tape System
Mach 1 Sports Interior Option
Tinted Glass – Complete
Those options brought this Mustang to a grand total of $4,601. Factor in inflation and that works out to somewhere around $25k in 2012 money – not bad for this amount of car. After leaving the plant on May 16th, it was delivered to Doan Ford in Belmont, Ohio where it was introduced to its first owner. The car was traded in sometime during 1973 and, for whatever reason, parked in a warehouse for the next 15 years until the second owner found it. He eventually performed a frame-up restoration good enough to merit an appearance in Mustang Monthly. Today, the car is a strong example of how good these later Mach 1's can look. Covered in an even coat of Gold Glow Metallic that's accented by an array of satin black factory stripes, the car has an aggressive demeanor that suits its muscular design well. The car presents well overall with no notable flaws and above average panel fitment.
By 1972, the performance era was coming to a close but no one told Mach 1 designers. The front of the car features two round headlights, square driving lights and a galloping pony suspended within an aggressive black honeycomb grille. Above, the black-out hood features functional twin scoops that feed air into the engine bay. The Ram Air option was only offered for the first two months of the 1972 model year, placing this among the final batch of cars to receive the option. Another interesting feature is the car's partial vinyl roof which covers the A-pillars and part of the top, stopping abruptly before the C-pillar. While it can rarely be said about a vinyl top, this one actually makes the car look meaner. Directly below, showroom fresh glass is surround by clean stainless trim. Under the body line, a factory tape stripe runs the length of the body with “Mach 1” scribed behind the front wheels. Out back, a satin black spoiler tops the decklid, while a honeycomb valence that ties into the grille design is framed by the taillights.
Under the sinister black-out hood, an authentic Q-code 351 Cleveland remains in its original home. Cranking out a respectable 266hp, this engine represents the last of an era. At the top, a correct Autolite 4-barrel carburetor sits under a fully functional ram air induction system. Below that carburetor, chrome Ford valve covers hang at the sides of an original cast iron intake which holds a correct Autolite coil next to a traditional points distributor and fresh Radio Resistance plug wires. At the sides, fully restored exhaust manifolds funnel spent gases into high performance true dual pipes while a correctly decaled radiator cycles water through Autolite hoses and reproduction clamps. As you can see, the car's engine bay has been properly sprayed in a smooth coat of satin black paint. All its ancillary components, from the power brake booster and Autolite voltage regulator to the correctly tagged AC compressor and gray shock tower braces are present and accounted for. The engine starts easily, sounds great and still enjoys hanging out on the upper end of the RPM range.
Take a peek under the car and you'll find a relatively clean underside that stays true to original configuration. Behind the motor, an original 4-speed transmission spins a correctly marked driveshaft and a durable Ford 9-inch rear end which appears to have original 3.25 gears. Holding that drivetrain off the ground is the original independent front and solid axle rear suspension which consists of OEM equipment and a set of Motorcraft shocks. Above that suspension, satin black floor pans appear solid and show little weathering across their layer of undercoating, just as the car left the factory. At the ends of that suspension, optional power steering combines with optional power front disc and rear drum brakes and a correctly over sprayed gas tank to make turning, stopping and accelerating an absolute cinch. In the middle of the floors, a fresh true dual exhaust system sends roasted dinosaurs from cast iron manifolds to an H-pipe crossover and great sounding Flowmaster mufflers. At the edge of the floors, power meets the pavement through familiar 15-inch Magnum 500 wheels which spin meaty Goodyear Eagle GT II's around galloping horse center caps.
Between the doors, a correct Black Sebring Knit vinyl interior features fresh Corinthian buckets seats and a roster of color-keyed accents which contrast nicely against the car's awesome exterior paint. Everything from the seat foams and red seat covers to the black carpet and red rubber floor mats appears to have been replaced during the restoration. The dash is loaded with rebuilt gauges, which include a factory clock, and features wood grain trim that's as vivid and bright as the day the car rolled into the showroom. A correct AM radio, which is complete with a factory 8-track player, rides between well integrated accessory gauges, controls for the car's heat and air conditioning and a chrome Hurst shifter. And an optional Rim Blow steering wheel combines with a red headliner, chrome accessory knobs and red, wood trimmed door panels to provide a fresh and appealing driving environment. Behind the interior, a completely restored trunk features a correct mat, correct lid decals a space saver spare and a cool pass through panel which works in conjunction with a sport deck rear seat to make this pony capable of hauling more than ass. Like most first generation Mustangs, this Mach 1's design and detailing is impressive proof that Ford had some of the best interior designers of their day.
Documentation for this thoroughbred includes an Eminger invoice, Marti report and a vehicle inspection report verifying what the car is and its general condition. There is an original owner's manual, maintenance schedule, warranty pamphlet and a handy brochure about choosing the correct oil for your new Mustang. Also included are five authentic Ford service manuals that cover the chassis, engine, electrical, body and general maintenance. A copy of the car's feature in Mustang Monthly rounds out the package.
If you're a fan of Ford performance, you know that Mach 1's are exceptional bargains that deliver big-block thrills at an unmatched price point. This 1972 Mach 1 is the perfect car to show and enjoy with no worries. Take care of it, maintain it, keep it looking great, and it will easily hold its value while you have a ton of fun. A classic Mustang with one of Ford's most venerable powerplants, wrapped in a great color combo – what's not to love?