Dale Amy
July 1, 2009

We'd happily go to Vegas on the odds that nearly all of this magazine's readership is at least vaguely familiar with Bullitt, Steve McQueen's 1968 production that is, for most of us at least, a half-decent movie punctuated by one of the most electrifying car chases in cinematic history. That it happens to star a Mustang is icing on the cake. Call me weird, but what has always made this infamous San Francisco pursuit so utterly engrossing to this old boy is its complete sensory package--not just cinematographer William A. Fraker's amazingly frenetic, high-speed, car-to-car camera work, but also the absolute ear candy of the accompanying exhaust-driven soundtrack. This brilliant piece of aural engineering almost musically contrasts the black Mopar's characteristic deep rumble with the higher-pitched, utterly raucous cackle of Lieutenant Bullitt's Mustang being endlessly double-clutched through the gears. Four decades later, it still raises pulse rates.

All of which is, perhaps, just my long-winded way of suggesting that a great car should sound as good as it looks. And that's a hard goal to achieve with one that looks as achingly good as Classic Design Concepts' latest "Flashback" variant, slathered in Bullitt-esque Dark Highland Green, wearing those just-right 18-inch Torq Thrust IIs, and appearing as though it should be airborne over the streets of San Francisco. But, just as McQueen's movie fastback sounded a little high strung in comparison to its Charger adversary, CDC has succeeded in giving this particular Flashback a tingly crisp, almost racy sonic personality that rips to life with the turn of the key, idles with just the right lumpy attitude, and renders the idea of using the car's potent Clarion and Rockford Fosgate sound system almost unthinkable. Why use a mere stereo when the Ford Racing 347 cubic-inch crate engine (M-6007-Z347), based around the new Boss 302 block, provides the mechanical equivalent of surround sound? Of course, topped as it is with Dynatek Racing's Weber-look EFI system, this quick-revving small-block can gather crowds even when shut off.

For those just tuning in, CDC's Flashback series of handbuilt, turnkey, "new" '67 Mustangs uses Dynacorn's replacement fastback body shells as a starting point, building upon them with 21st-century drivetrains, suspensions, and interiors for the best of both worlds. Best of all, CDC will custom build one to your tastes, with either pushrod or supercharged modular engine choices.

Yet, despite all of its obvious drool-quotient, the Flashback is also a practical beast, since one of the first things CDC accomplished was re-engineering the floorpan and seating to provide six inches more front legroom and a couple inches more headroom. One look at our interior shots reveals that the rest of the cabin also has amenities and trim quality never imagined back in the 1960s. Custom leather upholstery; power driver's seat, mirrors, locks, and windows; remote keyless entry, and a Vintage Air Gen IV Magnum electronic HVAC system are just some of the more obvious examples. We particularly like the customized instrument cluster from Classic Instruments, and the leather-wrapped, yet understated steering wheel that is a great modern interpretation of the movie Mustang's wheel.

That wheel commands a power rack-and-pinion steering setup from Australia's RRS, so there's none of the numbness of Ford's four-decade-old original gear. CDC also turned (pun maybe intended) to RRS for coilover front, and 3-link rear, suspension hardware, and we can personally confirm that the resulting handling had us searching for black Chargers to humiliate. Well, OK, what we were actually searching for was more excuses to keep driving this thing, because it is indeed about as addictive as an automobile can possibly get.