13  Mar
Black Beauty…

Why is it that recurrent undertakings of Friday the 13th seem to bless me with good fortune while cursing others with misery?

I have been fortunate enough to collect a small lottery winning, be released from hospital following successful, major surgery and even be advised of a work promotion, all on various recurrences of Friday the 13th. However, my latest stroke of luck on this supposed unluckiest of days came with the acquisition of another vintage vehicle:

An immaculate 1982 Ford Mustang GT – The legendary 5.0 Litre Muscle Car.

As the first mass-produced automobile to make its debut halfway through a model year, The Ford Motor Company of Detroit, Michigan unveiled the Mustang on April 17, 1964 at the New York World’s Fair. In fact, the Mustang remains Ford’s oldest model in continuous production, and still stands as their most successful new vehicle launch, with only the 1927 Model A considered comparable.

By the time my Mustang which I have affectionately dubbed Black Beauty, rolled off the assembly line at Dearborn, Michigan the “Pony Car” legend that the Mustang had given rise to nearly two decades earlier was already firmly established in the annals of Americana. In effect, my particular Mustang was already one of the most beloved muscle cars of all-time.

Originally fitted with a small-block, 289 cubic-inch V8 engine twenty years earlier; by the 1980’s the Ford Mustang had been significantly enhanced by boring-out the original engine in favour of a more powerful block. By increasing the displacement of each of the eight cylinders, Ford was able to produce an engine across the river from Detroit, which has indeed become as synonymous with style and power as its very name: The 302 cubic-inch Windsor V8, better known as the 5.0 Litre. Even rap music’s first Caucasian mogul, Vanilla Ice made reference to this engineering marvel in his multi-platinum single Ice Ice Baby:

“I was rollin’ in my five-point-oh with the rag top down so my hair can blow…”

Never one to shy away from individuality, my Mustang GT, now deemed a classic car at more than twenty-five years of age, bears many customizations. Unlike its antiquated origins which produced a modest 200 horsepower, my pony car is quite dissimilar to the majority, to say the least.

The original 5.0L V8 engine has been removed, bored-out and completely rebuilt, now boasting a 318 cubic-inch displacement, equivalent to 5.2 Litres. This significant augmentation, in addition to long-tube Hooker Headers, two deep-breathing, four barrel Holley Performance Parts carburetors, a K&N cold air intake, a K&N high-flow air filter and an MSD multi-spark ignition system, as well as other modifications have my classic Mustang producing more than 400 horsepower at the engine flywheel, and a little over 300 of the same at the rear tires!

I take pleasure and find humility in speaking with the many people who make contact with me at gas stations and while sitting at traffic lights, discussing the awesome power and thundering, inimitable sound of American Muscle. It is truly one of the simple joys that automobile enthusiasts seek in this life. However, I am equally if not more so amazed by the number of tinker-tots who attempt to impress me with their high-performance, four cylinder Japanese machines. While I am never one to dismiss the tremendous engineering accomplishments of European and Japanese automakers, let us always bear in mind that when debating which car is superior, we are comparing apples to oranges in many regards. All and sundry may be deemed brilliant in their own right, however, each can do things the other cannot even begin to attempt.

Call me biased, but aside from grossly overpowered supercars, I liken this matter to something Chuck Berry said many years ago in his hit song Maybelline:

“I saw a Cadillac rolling on Old Glen Road, but nothing outruns my V8 Ford.”

 

1982 Ford Mustang GT

 

Posted by August Donnelly, filed under . Date: March 13, 2009, 4:25 pm |

One Response

  1. Alana Says:

    Sweet Car! Can I have a ride? :)

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