Jim Smart
October 1, 2007

Meanwhile, anyone paying close attention to Washington, D.C. (Federal safety standards), and Hartford, Connecticut (the insurance industry), could see the writing on the wall. Factory musclecars were becoming increasingly unpopular due to high insurance rates and tougher safety standards.

For Ford, the special Boss 302 engine wasn't economical to produce. When the company pulled out of racing in the summer of 1971, a quick decision was made to drop the Boss 302 and replace it with the more economically feasible Boss 351, a solid-lifter version of the production 351C. Before the change, Ford produced six '71 Boss 302s at Dearborn in August 1970 for promotional purposes, even sending out photos of the cars with Boss 302 decals to magazines. Later, the graphics were changed to "Boss 351," but the cars carried G-code VINs and factory-installed Boss 302 engines. At least one survives as a 351C-2V SportsRoof with an M-code data sticker over the original G-code sticker.

Even with the late changeover, the Boss 351 was one of the best Mustang musclecars ever. With 330 hp--up from the Boss 302's 290 and the same as the '71 Camaro Z/28--the Boss 351 posted some of the quickest quarter-mile times in Mustang history.

In addition to its power and eye-appeal, Don's '71 Boss 351 is loaded with all kinds of appealing options, such as a rear spoiler, power steering, a console, an AM radio, an instrumentation package, Magnum 500 wheels, and the Interior Decor Group. The best part is its low mileage. There's nothing quite like the smell of factory-original Ginger vinyl and that nice, tight feel of a car that hasn't been driven much in 36 years.

When Don took possession of this car three years ago, he received all the documentation--the bill of sale, several years worth of registrations, the Ford warranty card, and even the bank payment book. This is the thrill of the treasure hunt for those who crave finding factory-original time capsules.

Don's 351 Facts

  • 1,806 units produced
  • Only 9 produced in Medium Yellow Gold
  • 13.80/104-mph quarter-mile (Motor Trend, Jan. '71)
  • 330 hp at 5,400 rpm
  • 370 lb-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm
  • Boss 351 fitted with Autolite 4300D carburetor
  • Aluminum dual-plane high-rise manifold
  • Dual-point distributor
  • Four-speed only
  • 3.91:1 Traction-Lok rear axle
  • Staggered rear shocks
  • Power front disc brakes
  • Three owners, including Don Prochot
  • Full documentation with this car
  • History traced back to original owner
  • Ordered on March 8, 1971
  • Serialized on March 10, 1971
  • Produced at Dearborn assembly on March 25, 1971
  • Sold new in May 1971
  • Documented with a Marti Report