Mustang Mach 1
The Ford Mustang proved to be the ultimate combination of affordability and performance, and American motorists could not get enough of it, but as the late 60s came along, Ford had added multiple specialty models to grow interest and sell more cars. With five performance models in showrooms for the 1969 model year, Ford decided to introduce a sixth version: the Mach 1. The Mach 1 Mustang first hit the dealerships in the fall of 1968 in an effort to attract younger auto enthusiasts and to make Ford cool again. The Mach 1 package stood for speed and performance, ranking among the top tier of the brand’s legendary performance offerings. Available only in the SportsRoof body style, the 1969 Mach 1 featured a host of cosmetic changes that separated the performance package from other fastback Mustangs. Since then the Mach 1 has had several iterations and after a 17 year hiatus made a comeback as a limited edition model for the 2021 model year. Below we take you through all the Mustang Mach 1 models over the years.
Ford Mustang Mach 1 (Concepts)
Technically, there was no 1968 model-year Ford Mustang Mach 1. The 1968 was still a concept or almost production prototype. The first Mach 1 concepts and designs were from 1966 – three years prior to the public launch of the Mustang Mach 1.
Ford Mustang Mach 1 (1969-1970)
The model was introduced in '68 for the 1969 model year. The Mach 1 package was only available in the "SportsRoof" fastback body style. The Mach 1 package was also distinguished by a matte-black hood decal, hood pins, a standard hood scoop, front and rear spoilers, and a louvered rear window. Mach 1s also include an upgraded suspension and some extra comfort and features. Engines ran the gamut, from the standard 351-cubic-inch Windsor V-8 to a 390 to a 428-cubic-inch Cobra Jet. Three-speed manual and automatic transmissions are available, as is a four-speed stick. It worked, with sales being so good that it led to the GT model being discontinued after 1969. Ford kept the Mach 1 alive into 1970 and little changed other than the visuals and a switch from 351-cubic-inch Windsor power to Cleveland V-8 power
Ford Mustang Mach 1 (1971-1973)
In 1971 the Mach 1 got a pretty major redesign. It also got larger and heavier. One of the most recognizable features of the 1971-1973 Mach 1s is the hood design with dual scoops. The hood was a no cost option on the 302 cars and standard on all others. The 1971 Mach 1 body was significantly larger than the 1969-1970 units. The basic NASA hood came as a non-functional item, but when ordered with the Ram Air option, it became truly functional. The Mach 1 remained mostly unchanged from 1971-1972 in terms of design. The Mach 1 still got lots of engine options during this era, with engines ranging from a 302 CID Windsor V8 to the massive 429 CID Super Cobra Jet motor. The most common Mach 1 engines from 1971 to 1973 were the 351C-2V and 4V engines. The Cobra Jet engine was good for 375 hp and 450 lb/ft of torque so that was definitely the one to get. Engines did change between the 1971 to 1973 years thanks largely to getting approval for emissions.
Ford Mustang Mach 1 (1974-1978)
Following the oil crisis, the Mustang was relegated to a smaller and notably less powerful economy car. In its first year on the market, the second generation car wasn't available with a V-8, but this didn't stop Ford from offering a Mach 1 trim. The Mach 1’s grille for 1974 to 1978 wasn’t any different than the rest of the Mustang II lineup. Beginning in 1977, Mustang II grilles went black, affording the marque some model year distinction. After much public outcry, V8 power returned to the Mach 1 for 1975. Since it had to modify the engine bay for the larger engine, Ford also made minor changes to the front fascia, but the Mach 1 continued to include the same styling package. The Mach 1 cruised through 1978 virtually unchanged. Like the GT it overshadowed years earlier, the Mach 1 suddenly found itself overshadowed by the flashy new Cobra II.
Ford Mustang Mach 1 (2003 - 2004)
When the second-generation Mustang was discontinued, the Mach 1 nameplate was phased off for decades and didn’t return until 2003. Introduced in 2003, the Mach 1 borrowed a lot from both the Bullitt and the SVT Cobra. From the Cobra it took the Brembo front brake rotors, gas shocks and struts, and the lower and stiffer springs. The Mach 1 also used the 4.6-liter Modular V-8 engine, but in a unique spec that included high flow heads from the SVT Cobra, intake camshafts sourced from Lincoln’s 5.4-liter InTech V-8 for more mid-range torque, and a higher compression ratio. This resulted in a power rating of 305 horsepower and 320 pound-feet of torque. Styling-wise, the 2003 Mach 1 was a return to the nameplate roots with black stripes on the hood and the lower side panels, Magnum 500-inspired wheels, and a rear spoiler. Production of the fourth generation Mustang ended altogether in 2004, and the Mach 1 did not return for the fifth-generation pony.
Ford Mustang Mach 1 Models
It took Ford another 17 years to revive the Mach 1 for the second time. Styling-wise, it’s inspired by the original Mach 1 from 1969. Under the hood, the Mach 1 is basically a Bullitt model as the 5.0-liter V-8 generates the same 480 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. That’s 20 horses more than the GT model and 46 horses below the Shelby GT350. Thanks to several upgrades to the drivetrain and the body, the Mach 1 is not only more aerodynamic, but it also handles better than the Mustang GT.
More Mach 1 News, Rumors, Videos & More
Whether it is a cool Mach 1 Mustang for sale or awesome Mach 1 Mustang video we find online, this is your hub for all the fun things going on in the world of the Mach 1s. Enjoy.