RESERVE LOWERED - 1968 Ford Mustang Coupe 302 'J Code'

HIGHLIGHTS


• Candy Apple Red respray after import
• Very original, Florida J-code car
• Covered just 2,000 miles since import in 2016

THE BACKGROUND


The Mustang was the car that started a revolution, introducing the ‘pony car’ segment and changing the way cars are marketed and sold forever. Ford sold 2 million within 2 years.

Now into its sixth generation, it has been in continuous production since 1964 and is a true icon of motoring.

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THE HISTORY


Imported into the UK in 2016, this car was manufactured in Dearborn, Michigan on the 24th April 1968 before being shipped out of Jacksonville, Florida.

In 2016 the car was imported into the UK, and has had just two owners since, covering just 2,000 miles in the last 5 years. The Mustang Owners Club of GB have confirmed the car’s history and status.

What makes the car truly rare though, is the fact it’s a ‘J-Code’. This dates from the period when Ford moved from the 289ci V8 to the 302ci V8 found in this car. The code was used for just one year, making it a collectible and unique vehicle, especially in the UK.

As it is now classified as a historic vehicle, it is tax and MOT exempt, although an MOT was obviously carried out when the car was imported.

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THE PAPERWORK


As would be expected, the V5 is present, as are the DVLA import and registration documents.

The import MOT from 2016 shows the car displayed 6,388 when tested, confirming how little the car has been used since it came into the UK.

The original VIN plate is present, along with a letter of identification from the Mustang Owners Club of Great Britain, which should give any new owner real confidence in the originality and provenance of the vehicle.

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THE INTERIOR


The car is in very good condition internally, with the original black crinkle vinyl remaining in very good condition. There are some minor areas of wear and tear, but nothing unexpected on such an original car. The current keeper tells us that all of the switchgear and internal features work as they should. All of the dials look look great and the door mechanisms and manual windows all function correctly. 

All of the original switchgear is present and correct, with everything being in good, unrestored condition and displaying a nice patina. The original stereo has been changed out for a tape deck with aux input that apes the look of a vintage radio/cassette. 

The carpet and headlining are in good condition too, with the headlining showing no evidence of damage or sagging. The door cards are also in great condition, the black ribbed vinyl having no rips or damage and looking to be in great condition for their age.

Inside the boot (which contains a full size spare), you clearly see that the car has been recently resprayed, as the boot area has been left original. The factory spec ‘Royal Maroon’ paintwork is clearly evident. If we were buying the car, we would invest in getting the boot carpeted, but overall all of the interior trim is in good, original, unrestored condition.

Only the driver’s side door lock is non-functioning, but we believe this should be a relatively simple fix as it’s a traditional mechanical lock.

THE EXTERIOR


What immediately strikes you about the car is the colour. That Candy Apple Red really pops, and complements the car beautifully. The car was originally specified in Royal Maroon, as can be seen from inside the boot, but according to the owner was resprayed when it was imported to the UK. The paintwork certainly looks very recent, and is in excellent condition.

Thankfully, all of the exterior trim and brightwork has ben kept original and maintains its lovely patina. It’s all present and correct and looks to be in great condition. As should be expected of a 53 year old car, obviously there is some age-related wear, and a couple of areas show some light blistering, but as a whole the bodywork is in great condition.

The wheels, which are in good condition, are original items with new Maxxis whitewall tyres. Underneath, the car looks straight, original and honest. You can tell the car has been well-kept on both sides of the Atlantic, it’s obviously been someone’s pride and joy.

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THE MECHANICS


Mechanically, the 302ci V8 (a whopping 4,951cc in metric!) is a simple engine, and all the better for it. Easy to work on, unstressed and offering plenty of power, it suits the Mustang perfectly. Here, it pulls well, firing up quickly, idling and running smoothly and sounding absolutely wonderful. That V8 burble simply never gets old. The engine looks very original and tidy, crowned as it is with an iconic Edelbrock chrome air cleaner.

The monstrous V8 is mated to a C4 3-speed automatic gearbox, driving a 3.00 open drive final axle. It’s a reliable and trusted combination that makes the Mustang an enjoyable car to drive and a very capable GT car. We’re assured by the owner that the car rides and stops as it should, and it certainly drove nicely and very smoothly when we saw it.

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THE APPEAL


There aren’t many cars that genuinely deserve to be labelled as “iconic”, but the Mustang is definitely one of them. It started the whole ‘pony car’ segment, and is still widely regarded as the definitive American car.

That gorgeous, burbly V8 gives it plenty of grunt and sounds absolutely incredible, especially once the revs load up a little. There’s not much that stops traffic like a 60s Mustang. It’s certainly not a car for the shy and retiring type. Especially in this specification. The Candy Apple Red paintwork looks great and is truly stunning when the sun catches it. Twinned with the new whitewalls and original brightwork, it strikes a nice balance between being very original, yet looking very good indeed.

There is room for some improvement – the boot needs to be carpeted and there are one of two areas internally that need minor attention – but overall this is a straight, clean, original and solid car. The fact that it’s a collectible J-code model shouldn’t be overlooked either. Only a few thousand J-code hardtops were made, many of which have not survived to this day. In the UK these are proper “hen’s teeth” cars. So this is a fantastic opportunity to purchase a solid classic Mustang, in a very collectible specification, that has been kept in good, original condition.

As a way to spend a weekend, there can’t be many better than going for a drive in your Mustang, maybe popping to a classic car meet to display the old girl. If you dream of the open road and long for the days of long road trips, late night diners and laying 11s down at the lights, then this is definitely the car for you. As one of the classic American adverts of the 60s said: “Only Mustang Makes it Happen!”

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1968
  • Make Ford
  • Model Mustang
  • Colour Candy Apple Red
  • Odometer 8,424 Miles
  • Engine size 4951
  • Location Dorset
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
18 bids
  • mitchel•••• £20,000 03/12/21
  • a.160su•••• £19,250 30/11/21
  • Paula21 £18,500 30/11/21
  • a.160su•••• £18,000 29/11/21
  • Paula21 £17,500 29/11/21
  • mitchel•••• £17,000 29/11/21
  • moosen.•••• £16,000 29/11/21
  • a.160su•••• £15,000 29/11/21
  • moosen.•••• £14,000 29/11/21
  • Paula21 £13,500 29/11/21

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