First-generation Mustangs (like many Ford models) have the all-important warranty plate riveted to the driver-side door. When the door goes missing (as it has here), you lose vital information describing original specifications like paint color, interior trim style, vehicle assembly date, where the car was originally delivered, axle type/ratio, and transmission type. Dig the clean, rust-free body. The only signs of repairs are small patches on the lower quarter-panels. First-generation Mustangs (like many Ford models) have the all-important warranty plate ri Though convertibles and 2+2 (fastback) models get all the stares and collector dollars today, the basic Mustang hardtop accounted for well over three-fourths of all Mustang sales during the car's first few years of production. For instance, of the 607,568 Mustangs sold in 1966, 35,698 were 2+2 fastbacks and 72,119 were convertibles. By contrast, a whopping 499,751 were hardtops. Get the point? Seems the 2+2 fastback's miniaturized trunk lid opening and the convertible's reduced-volume trunk compartment weren't practical enough for most buyers. But the hardtop offered a larger trunk lid than the 2+2's mail slot, and its trunk volume wasn't compromised by the convertible's folding top mechanism. The kicker for many customers was the hardtop's starting price-some $200 less than the other body styles offered. Here's a sweet '66 hardtop we spotted recently at Desert Valley Auto Parts in arid Phoenix (www.dvap.com, 800/905-8024). It'd make a great starting point for any number of cool projects. Groovy Factoids • When Ford introduced the Mustang on April 17, 1964, first-day sales were a record-smashing 22,000. That's in one day. By the time April 17, 1965 rolled around, Ford had sold a total of 418,812 Mustangs. The ponycar was born, and the rest of Detroit quickly realized it wanted a slice of the action. If you love Cougars, Camaros, Firebirds, Barracudas, Challengers, and Javelins, you owe a debt of gratitude to the original Mustang. • An optional front bench seat was offered for just under $25.00 on '65 and '66 hardtops and convertibles. But of the 1.3 million first-generation Mustangs sold, only about 2,000 were ordered with the Falcon-esque front bench seat (with fold-down center armrest). All others got sportier front bucket seats. All first-generation Mustangs came equipped with a floor shifter, regardless of transmission type. Column shift was not available-too stodgy on a sporty ponycar, don't you know. The triple pedals identify this one as a stick shifter, but was it the base three-speed manual or the optional four-speed? Without the warranty plate or original paperwork, we can only guess. All first-generation Mustangs came equipped with a floor shifter, regardless of transmissi We always marvel at how Ford assigned the top of the gas tank to double as the trunk floor. Can you imagine what'd happen if you had a loose top post battery stored in the trunk and it flipped over during a donut? Unless said battery was as dead as a doornail, the posts could short out against the trunk floor/gas tank top. The impromptu arc welder could be a problem sitting atop all the flammable gasoline. Wonder if this ever happened. That empty beer bottle isn't ours. We swear. We always marvel at how Ford assigned the top of the gas tank to double as the trunk floor The engine may be missing, but the VIN stamping on the fender apron goes like this: 6R07T165676, 6 = model year 1966, R = San Jose, California, assembly plant, 07 = hardtop coupe, T = 200-cube inline six-cylinder engine, 165676 sequence number. OK, so it isn't a K-code 289 Hi-Po car, but that wouldn't stop us from installing an all-aluminum 427-inch Windsor small-block and Tremec five-speed. And since you're buying, let's go with an aluminum 9-inch centersection. The engine may be missing, but the VIN stamping on the fender apron goes like this: 6R07T1 By Steve Magnante Enjoyed this Post? Subscribe to our RSS Feed, or use your favorite social media to recommend us to friends and colleagues!