Jerry Heasley
February 8, 2017
Photos By: Mark Wilson

Mark Wilson wasn’t looking for a Japanese Mustang, but while browsing eBay one day, he ran across a 1971 Mach 1 with a 429 Cobra Jet. “The picture showed orange lights on the front fender, which I had never seen before,” Mark says. “That’s what caught my eye. Then I read more about it, and the ad said the Mustang was a Japanese export.”

A Mustang Monthly subscriber since 1986 and a collector since 1987, Mark didn’t even know these Asian-bound Mustangs existed. But Mark does work for Ford in Shanghai, China’s largest city. He is responsible for creating special packages for the Asia Pacific market, similar to California Specials, and Pony or MCA packages sold in the United States.

The side-turn signals placed high on each front fender are an oddity that gives this Japanese Mach 1 a special flare.
The 1971 Japanese Mach 1 was in excellent condition, ready to drive and enjoy with original paint.
From what Mark Wilson has been able to discover, Japanese export Mustangs are highly optioned.

Wilson called a coworker in Japan, who verified that Ford has sold Mustangs in Japan since the early ’70s. The Mach 1 Wilson had found was for sale in California, apparently having been shipped from Japan back to the States, still with special Japanese features. He bought the Mach 1 and has been researching the history of Japanese Mustangs, including a Marti Report that verifies the car’s export status. He believes Mustang exports had occurred for the 1971-’72 through ’73 model years. One person in Japan told him the 1974 Mustang II was very popular there, too.

So far Mark has located roughly 15 1971-1973 Japanese Mustangs, all of which exhibit similar modifications. They are all high-end cars as far as options and accessories go. Most of those 15 Japanese Mustangs that Wilson found are still located in Japan, but three are in Australia, and one in California. Each Japanese Mustang went through a conversion process to comply with that country’s laws when it was shipped.

Readers can email (jerryheasley@gmail.com) if they have more information to share.

The odometer shows 79,646 kilometers, which is 49,490 miles. The speedometer for 1971 goes to 200 kilometers per hour (124 mph), while 1973s go to 220kph.
An extra light located in the front lower turn signal lights is part of the driving lights and foglights system that consists of extra bulbs installed on the rear outermost brake light, as well as the front, lower turn-signal housing.
Two round reflectors, one per side, protrude beneath the rear bumper. These were a lighting regulation in Japan. Their presence is original and a cool talking point on this rare Japanese Mustang.
The rear side-marker lights were red on the Mach 1 that Mark Wilson found. However, he discovered some of these lights are yellow on 1971-1973 Mustangs and appear to be sourced from a 1971 Galaxie to comply with Japanese regulations.
Stamped in the driver’s side shock tower, Mark Wilson found “01J1018MB.” Mark has discerned from the Japanese online ads that the chassis number is 01J1018 and the model number is 01J1. Not every 1971 he has investigated, however, has this unique Japanese ID number stamped on the shock tower.

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