Ford Mustang History

1974

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1974 Mustang

The 1974 Mustang marked the beginning of the "Mustang II" generation. The Mustang II is a serious attempt to recapture the spirit of a previous era. With a silhouette and dimensions closer to the '65 Mustang than was the case in the recent past, the Mustang II is the right car for the times.

Strong first year sales confirm that a smaller platform, gas-efficient powertrain and the addition of rack-and-pinion steering are welcome change. With the insurance industry bearing down on the high output contingent and OPEC causing lines at the pump, the Mustang II is a reasonable solution to most everyone but the performance enthusiast.

Despite the Ghia design studio's reinterpretation of the original Mustang, the 2.3-liter overhead-cam four-cylinder and the 2.8-liter V6 are loath to satisfy the enthusiast's call for the boulevard cruisers of the recent past. Buyers are too busy checking out the nifty little Mustang II to pay much attention to its critics.

Even with slower cars and higher prices, sales nearly tripled the 1973 numbers, and the Mustang II was named Motor Trend's Car of the Year. Mustang IIs featured rack-and-pinion steering, which made driving easier and more comfortable. The switch to rack-and-pinion became a popular modification for first-generation owners.

Convertible Mustangs weren't offered in 1974 due to federal safety regulations, and the Ghia replaced the Grandé as the luxury Mustang.

Charles Keresztes' pony grille ornament design slows from a gallop to a trot, perhaps to conserve energy.

Engines

  • 171cid 2.8L 2V V6 105HP Z Code
  • 140cid 2.3L 2V 4-cyl 88HP Y Code

Production

  • Hatchback, standard: 74,799
  • Hatchback, Mach 1, standard: 44,046
  • Coupe, standard: 177,671
  • Coupe, Ghia, standard: 89,477
  • -Total-: 385,993

Prices

  • Coupe, standard: $3,134
  • Hatchback, standard: $3,328
  • Coupe, Ghia, standard: $3,480
  • Hatchback, Mach 1, standard: $3,674

Colors

  • Bright Red
  • Dark Red
  • Ginger Glow
  • Green Glow
  • Light Blue
  • Medium Bright Blue Metallic
  • Medium Lime Yellow
  • Pearl White
  • Saddle Bronze Metallic
  • Silver Metallic
  • Tan Glow
  • Bright Green Gold Metallic
  • Medium Copper Metallic

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