1970 Ford Mustang Mach 1 “Twister Special” Original Test Vehicle Is Now For Sale

In late 1969 Ford offered special-edition Mustang to dealers in the Kansas City area. Based on 1970 Mach 1 the cars were known as the “Twister Special.” Highlights include the Grabber Orange exterior paint along with custom “Twister Special” graphics. The Mustang Twister Special cars debuted for the Total Performance Day at the Kansas City, MO district sales office on November 7, 1969.

In all, 96 Twister Specials were built. These specially ordered and consecutively numbered Mach 1’s were a promotional Mustang made exclusively for the Ford Kansas City Sales District dealers (DSO 53). This covered an area including Kansas, Missouri and the Northwest corner of Arkansas. The 1970 Twisters were a separate project utilizing the designs of the American Raceway Incorporated (ARI) pace cars. None of the pace cars were ever converted to Twister Special’s as stated in some magazine articles and websites.

Interestingly, the Twister Specials were originally slated to get only 428 super Cobra Jet engines, but Ford changed course and included some 351 Cleveland engines as well because they ran out of 428 SCJ engines. The 48 available 428 SCJ’s were used and the remaining 48 cars were equipped with the newly announced 351 Cleveland 4V engines. About half of the production run of Twister Specials were equipped with C6 automatic transmissions and the other 48 were equipped with 4 speed manual transmissions. The cars also got the Drag Pack suspension and that unique tornado decal on the rear fender with the words Twister Special. The only non-performance options were an AM Radio and Tinted Glass.

All 96, 1970 Twister’s were built at Dearborn in the early to middle part of October 1969. At the same time, in Atlanta, the 90, 1970 Twister Torino Cobra’s were being produced in Vermilion having either 429 CJ or 429SCJ engines. The Twister Mustangs were produced first. The Twisters were in the 118,000 VIN series while the 10 ARI pace cars were in the 120,000 series.

The cars were shipped to Ford’s Kansas City Claycomo assembly plant outbound transportation lot. Stripes and decals were applied by a detailing firm under contract with Ford’s Special Promotions Division. Completely finished, the cars were once again transferred, this time as the main attraction for Kansas City’s special day.

The Car Featured Here

Now, the car featured here is the one and only Twister Special test vehicle made by Ford. This Mustang has been used for advertising and promotional purposes around in and around Kansas City. It comes with complete documentation indicating that this Mach 1 was delivered straight to Ford Motor Company in Kansas City.

This 1970 Ford Mustang Mach 1 “Twister Special” has been fitted with a 428 Super Cobra Jet V8 paired to a close ratio 4-speed manual transmission. It was also fitted with the Drag Pack 3.91 gears as well as Magnum 500 wheels, and Goodyear Polyglas tires. A concours restoration was done to this car to like-original specs while keeping its original drivetrain.

This car will soon be available on Mecum’s auction block in January and will be offered with no reservations. If you like to know more about this car or register to bid, you should see the official listing on Mecum Auctions.

Note: All photos are courtesy of Mecum Auctions