Black and Silver 1970 Ford Mustang Mach 1

Posted on 2017-09-25

1970 Mach 1 Black/Silver


1970 Mach 1 Mustang here at Skyway Classics has quite a story behind the car itself. Before you come see it for yourself we thought you might like to know a little background on it.

The Ford Mustang Mach 1 was a performance-oriented option package of the Ford Mustang, originally introduced by Ford in August 1968 as a package for the 1969 model year. The Mach 1 title adorned performance oriented Mustang offerings until the original retirement of the moniker in 1978.

Ford first used the name "Mach 1" in its 1959 display of a concept called the "Levacar Mach I" at the Ford Rotunda. This concept vehicle used a cushion of air as propulsion on a circular dais.

The Ford Mustang was successfully introduced in April 1964 as a sporty "pony car" to attract younger buyers into Ford products. After a few years of development, Ford saw the need to create performance Mustangs to compete with GM and their release of the Chevrolet Camaro and Pontiac Firebird.

As the performance war continued, the Mustang's platform and engine bay were progressively redesigned to accommodate larger engine blocks. Late in the 1968 model year, Ford introduced the 428 cu in Cobra Jet FE engine in a small group of Mustang GTs and into the 1968 Shelby GT500KR. This was a strong performer and indicated the direction of the 1969 Mustang. However, "GT" wasn't a name that would initiate images of street screeching performance; hence the introduction of the Mach 1 title.

The Mach 1 package was only available in the 'SportsRoof' body style never on the hardtop or convertible. The Mach 1 started with a V8 powered 'Sportsroof' body and added numerous visual and performance enhancing items such as matte black hood treatment with hood pins, hood scoop (including optional Shaker scoop), competition suspension, chrome pop-open gas cap, revised wheels with Goodyear Polyglas tires, chrome exhaust tips, deluxe interior, dealer optional chin spoiler, rear deck spoiler, and rear window louvers.

1970 saw the previous 351W V8 engine options replaced with a new 351 cu in Cleveland (351C) V8 in either 2V (for use with 2-venturi carbs) or 4V (for use with 4-venturi carbs) versions. The 351C 4V (M code) engine featured 11.0:1 compression and produced 300 hp at 5400 rpm.

This new performance engine incorporated elements learned from the Ford 385 series engine and the Boss 302, particularly the poly-angle combustion chambers with canted valves and the thin-wall casting technology.

The 351 4V was optional with a 4 speed manual or 3 speed FMX automatic transmission on the small block engines. A "traction lok" rear axle was also optional.

Mach 1s came with upgraded suspension to varying degrees dependent upon powertrain choices. Standard on Mach 1s was a fierce but cosmetic hood scoop that had integrated turn-signal lights mounted in the back. A more functional option was the signature "Shaker hood", an air scoop mounted directly to the top of the motor, used to collect fresh air and so named for its tendency to "shake" above the rumbling V-8 below. The interior came complete with teak wood grain details, full sound deadening material and high-back sport bucket seats.

Ford kept the Mach 1 alive into 1970 and little changed other than the visuals. The 1970 body included dual-beam headlights with the previous inner headlights becoming sport lamps and recessed taillights on a black honeycomb rear panel, side scoops behind both doors removed, revised bucket seats, deep dish sports wheel covers, as well as new side and rear badging and striping were the main visual differences.

We couldn't find a test of this specific M-code/four-speed combination, but Road & Track had one with an automatic transmission in 1970. 

This one at Skyway Classics would have a substantial advantage over that Mach's 8.2-second 0-60 time, at least half a second. Car Craft ran a 1970 Mach 1 down the dragstrip, and it did 15.23 seconds at 94.33 mph, compared to the automatic's 16.3 @ 86.20.  


Bobby Chestnut


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