The Mustang Monthly Staff
March 1, 2000

Step By Step

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P91371_large 1965_Ford_Mustang_Fastback Front_Passenger_SideP91372_large 1965_Ford_Mustang_Fastback Rear_Driver_SideP91373_large 1965_Ford_Mustang_Fastback Front_Emblem

Bill Collins of Bill's Mustang Restoration found this '65 fastback under a bunch of boxes packed into the corner of a garage in 1989. That garage, located in Springfield, Illinois, was part of some property that a friend of Bill's had purchased. The Mustang had to literally be dragged from its cocoon, as the brakes were seized and all four tires were flat.

Bill researched the fastback and found the original owner living in Kansas. The owner had received the fastback as a high school graduation present, but in 1970 her boyfriend had blown up the engine, tore it all apart, and then left it. Later, between a marriage and moving, the fastback was left behind to wither. Not only had the fastback not been on the road since 1970, but also it still had the original '65 license plate on it. Even luckier for Bill, she still held the title for the fastback.

Bill had previously owned two real Shelbys--selling them both when financial needs arrived. Now, with a real Shelby out of his price range, Bill decided to build his own. The fastback has been decked out in a two-stage paint job with four-wheel disc brakes, six-speed transmission, nodular 9-inch rearend, and a supercharged 302 based on a Boss 302 block. The suspension didn't get left off the freshen-up list, either, with 620 front coils, a negative wedge kit, 1-inch lowered upper control arms, adjustable lower control arms, Shelby override traction bars, and a rear sway bar. The must-have American Racing Torq-Thrust D wheels, wrapped in BFGoodrich Comp T/A rubber, round out the suspension improvements.

Now, the fastback is used for shows and some open-track events, including MCA National shows and even two Hot Rod Power Tours. Wherever this Mustang is going, the Collins always drive their fastback to the event, which says a lot about not only the reliability of this fastback, but also the high fun factor.