Jim Smart
February 1, 2000
Photos By: Tom Rounds

Few of us can agree on what makes an automobile "right." Few of us can argue with the emotional charisma of a first- or second-generation Mustang convertible; make that a first-generation GT with the sound of a solid lifter 289 Hi-Po inside-just for fun. Next in line is undoubtedly the '69-'70 Mustang SportsRoof. Make ours a Boss 302 or a Cobra Jet Mach 1. Now that's "right."

Not many of us get excited over '69-'73 Mustang hardtops because they tend to be vanilla in scope. We remember these cars for our high school math teacher or the divorced neighbor down the block. As we said, vanilla and utilitarian in scope. Dress up one of these hardtops in the right color combination with a smattering of options, however, and suddenly it's the cutest thing you've ever seen.

Mustang Monthly staffer Tom Rounds caught this hardtop at Charlotte during the Mustang's 35th anniversary celebration a year ago. There it was, clad in glistening Light Pewter Metallic-a nice ride anyone would be proud to own and drive. Call this Mustang d'Elegance. Why? Because it's not something you see every day. Fourth-generation Mustang hardtops are survivors because they didn't have the mass appeal enjoyed by their SportsRoof and convertible siblings. They remain the kids whom those "outside of the family" overlooked.

Theresa Marie Slaughter of New Jersey didn't overlook this pewter hardtop. She isn't a high school math teacher, nor is she that lonely soul down the block. She specializes in retail sales.

To get a look at her prized possession, we'll start by opening the driver door. Stroll past the pewter finish into a rich world of brilliant vermillion vinyl. It's rich yet vanilla. It's dressed in all black yet it screams magenta. It has high-back bucket seats, a console, a Philco AM radio, and a host of nice Mustang refinements for 1972.

Take the wheel and this Mustang yields a comfortable driving experience. Lean on the gas and the 302-2V small-block V-8 responds with ample power. A C4 Select-Shift smoothly channels the twist to conventional 2.79 cogs in back. Twin-pod instrumentation looks sharp, and a steeply raked dashboard yields a bold and majestic appearance-something to be proud of.

Theresa affectionately calls her Mustang "Madison." It's an easily admired and respected family member. A restoration allows us to express our love and affection for those possessions we hold dear, especially when it becomes the ultimate sacrifice of time and assets. A restoration takes heaping measures of both. What's more, this one was accomplished by Theresa and her family.

The icing on the cake is the prestige that comes from the recognition of your peers in Mustang Club of America concours competition. Teresa's '72 has won two First Place awards in MCA Grand National competition. Add to that an MCA National Show First Place award; an MCA Grand National Gold; an MCA National Gold; two awards for Excellence at the 30th and 35th anniversary celebrations, respectively, in Charlotte; and a Best of Show at Rice and Holman Ford in Mount Laurel, New Jersey. Outstanding performance from an oft overlooked cuter pewter coupe.