Eric English
April 1, 2005

Charles Allen has pretty well heard it all. The owner of this impressive feature car tells us his fellow Boss cohorts give him a good-natured ribbing about the "dirty white" hue of his '70 Boss 302, along with some accompanying jokes about "real" musclecar colors. Well, we're about to turn the tables on the naysayers and bring you Chuck's SportsRoof in all its pastel glory-precisely due to the unusual color.

It's clear that while 1970 is generally considered the zenith year for American musclecars, it was also a year in which bright and bold colors were all the rage. Over at Chrysler, you had hues like Plum Crazy, Lemon Twist, and Sassy Grass Green, while AMC hung the "Big Bad" moniker on its most outrageous offerings. At Ford, 1970 was all about the Grabber colors: blue, green, and orange shades that brought a look-at-me attitude to every street corner. Almost lost in the retina-searing craze was that 1970 introduced a wide range of colors to Boss 302 production that hadn't been available during the model's initial run in 1969. Greater selection was just the ticket for buyers looking for something slightly under the radar, and the original owner of this Boss chose one of the most subtle shades imaginable-a pastel yellow that shows as a code 9 on the door tag.

We admit to having a thing for unusual combinations, particularly big power/nontraditional paint pairings. Show us a Gulfstream Aqua '69 Cobra Jet Mach 1 or a Burnt Amber '67 390 GT, and you immediately have our attention. Nothing against the traditional reds and blues of the world-they're terrific too; it's just that we've seen enough to accept them as the norm. Imagine our enthusiasm when stumbling onto Chuck's Boss at the annual Mustang Roundup in Bellevue, Washington, a couple of years ago. The affable Chuck explained how he'd purchased the '70 in its present condition from fellow enthusiast Bob Wolfe in 1997, who'd finished the last detail items of a car that could only be described as "restored by committee."

Chuck tells us his Boss was sidelined between 1978 and 1990 with a predictable piston-skirt failure in the original engine. Finally, a series of owners went to work to get this 52,000-mile machine into its current condition, with Stan Johnson doing the engine rebuild, David Lang freshening the interior with a new carpet and dash bezel, Mike Beckman facilitating the high-quality respray, and Wolfe sweating the final details. It's likely all the former owners recognized this car as an unusual combination, but it wasn't until after Chuck's purchase that Kevin Marti's computer data became available and true numbers were revealed. As it turns out, just four code 9 yellow Boss 302s were assembled in 1970, making it among the rarest of the regular production colors offered.

Remarkable as Chuck's topcoat may be, the rest of his Boss is plenty special as well. The fact is, this was one loaded muscle Mustang just as it rolled off the new car lot at Northeast Ford in Washington D.C. Inside, you'll find a factory eight-track tape player in place of the original AM/FM (by all accounts changed out early in life), but the floor console and woodgrain-trimmed Dcor Group are just as assembled in Metuchen, New Jersey. Outside, the visuals are in sharp contrast to the understated color, as the most innovative styling statements of the era-Shaker scoop, sport slats, and rear spoiler-are all accounted for on the original window sticker.