Jerry Heasley
October 8, 2015

It’s in the quiet moments at the beginning of the day, when the sun has just crested the horizon, the dew is still fresh on the grass, and the crowds that pack the Mustang Club of America Grand Nationals have yet to arrive. This is the time we find the perfect opportunity to walk the show grounds and check out the variety of Mustangs present, before the hoods are opened and the lawn chairs are unpacked, and before the throngs of spectators block our camera’s view of the cars, with nothing but our camera and a hot cup of coffee releasing its steam into the brisk morning air to keep us company.

Elsewhere, you can read our coverage of the MCA’s 2015 Grand Nationals show. That story described the nuts and bolts of the show and displayed the Mustangs that were there, but we wanted a more intimate look at the cars that “spoke” to us so we got up early on Sunday morning to wander around unhindered. Readers please add comments to expand captions of each car with a comment below, and maybe the owners will give more details, too.

Very early morning is the best time to witness a black car, as the sun dances a beautiful ballet of light upon the glistening ebony sheetmetal, accenting the perfect lines of this ’66 convertible. Black is beautiful, but how rare are these? We searched the entire show and spotted only one black 1965-1966 model.

Question #1: What did Ford call black in 1966?
Answer: Raven Black

This ’67 coupe blew us away for the quality and the color. We also like the standard wheel covers that make this car look so honest.

Question #2: What was the factory name of this color?
Answer: Burnt Amber.

We hunted for the owner of this “Hot Wheels” early Mustang, a 1965 or a 1966 model coupe, but with no luck. Script on the gas cap read, “Frostang.”

Question #3: What is the history of the Hot Wheels Mustang?
Answer: We don’t know.

The early morning light allowed us to appreciate the hood stripes on this green 1970 Mach 1. This Mustang is a super sleeper even with the stripes and shaker hood for the 428 Cobra Jet.

Question #4: Why would a new car buyer order stripes and a shaker hood in green with black stripes and dog dish hubcaps?
My Answer: Great foresight.

We have always loved the early fastbacks and this ’66 sure fits our dream car wish. Poppy Red is the color with Hi-Po emblems on the front fenders. This 289 is a K-code, which we determined when the hood was open on Saturday.

Question: How do people find these cars?
Answer: They are lucky.

Nostalgia struck your author hard with this ‘66 coupe, in white—I drove a white ’66 for 10 years. My ’66, however, had the ornamentation in the scoops ahead of the rear wheels.

Question: Why does this ’66 not have the ornaments?
Answer: The optional Accent Stripe negated the ornaments.

Just a Grande? No way—this Grande is a ram air 429 Cobra Jet!

Question: How many Grandes did Ford build in 1971 with the 427 Cobra Jet?
Answer: Kevin Marti, a little help?

This is no ordinary 1968 Mustang. Right, California Special is the answer. The GT/CS was a Shelby coupe proposal that made production as a dealer special in California.

Question: What engine is under the hood of this GT/CS?
Answer: A J-code 302 four-barrel.

This Mustang II Ghia looks like a little luxury car. We like the color combination. Somebody preserved this Mustang II as it still looks like new.

Question: What is the model year?
Answer: I don’t know, but my guess is 1978.

A 1969 Mach 1 is maybe the best-looking first generation Mustang ever. I am biased because when I was a kid a ’69 parked in the driveway right outside my bedroom wind

Question: What does Mach 1 mean?
Answer: The speed of sound. Now can you tell us who was the first human being to hit Mach 1?

Forged wheels are a tip off this is a ’73 model. The engine is a 351 and the yellow paint is cool.

Question: Does the engine have ram air?
Answer: Duh, the script on the hood reads “351 Ram Air.”

The owner of this 1967 Shelby G.T.500 told us he bought this fastback in the early 1970s for $1,200. We offered him ten times his money and his response, both verbally and physically, can’t be printed here.

Question: What did Shelby call their white in 1967?
Answer: Post your comment.

In the Mustang II line, the Cobra II was the top performance model. Okay, the 302 wasn’t so hot, but the car looked great.

Question: What famous racecar driver promoted this car in the 1970s?
Hint: His initials are CS.