First Generation Ford Mustang: The 1962 Mustang Research Vehicle

First Generation Ford Mustang: The 1962 Mustang I Research Vehicle

By: Laure Justice

1962 Ford Mustang I Roadster
By Sicnag (1962 Ford Mustang I Roadster) [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
What does a major car company, like Ford, do when their reputation starts to get a bit stale?

The 1962 Mustang I Concept Car

They change things up with an edgy concept car, like the 1962 Mustang I, that’s what they do! (Well – did)

The Ford Mustang has a prominent spot in automotive history. It was not only an epically designed muscle car, it was a muscle car before the term was attached to these powerful lightweight cars.

Specs of the ’62 Mustang 1 Prototype

Mustang & Ford Small Block V8: 1962-1969
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The 1962 Mustang was a sleek open-top 2 seater with an aluminum body and a 1500cc mid-mounted V4 engine. Only two models of this first generation Ford Mustang was ever made, though, because it was decided that it was too extreme to put into production.

The 1962 Mustang shown above was ‘rediscovered’ in 1967 and then restored before being donated to the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan in 1982.

The Mustang behind the ’62 model in the image above is the first production Mustang that ever built; it was a 1964 260-V8 convertible Mustang painted classic Wimbledon White.

Ford Mustang I Concept Sketch
By Own work by William “Bill” Zuk [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The 1962 Mustang 1 Prototype’s Debut

The Mustang 1 prototype made its debut on October 7, 1962 at the US Grand Prix at Watkins Glen race track in New York. The ’62 was the first car to sport the galloping pony emblem and Mustang name, and many of the design elements found on the ’62 Mustang prototype remained in use for the Ford Mustang product line through the years.

1962 Mustang I Roadster
1962 Ford Mustang 1 Roadster image by Michael Barera [CC BY-SA 4.0 (, CC BY-SA 3.0 ( or GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons

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