This Is the First Ford Mustang Hardtop Ever Built

It's one of only three Pilot Plant prototype Mustangs remaining.

At first glance, the Mustang shown here looks like every other nicely restored 1965 model. It’s in great condition and the blue interior paired with the blue paint might stand out somewhat, but that’s about it. Once you hear its story, though, it becomes a lot more interesting. That’s because it’s actually the first Mustang hardtop ever built, and you can buy it later this month at Barrett-Jackson’s Scottsdale auction.

Wearing VIN #00002, this pre-production Mustang—check out sketches and concepts that led to the final design—is also one of only three Ford Pilot Plant Mustangs known to still exist. (The Pilot Plant was where assembly processes were tested and documented before the actual factory started volume production.) Power comes from a 170-cubic-inch U-code inline-six, while the transmission is a three-speed manual. The seller claims it has been restored to factory condition and that all major components are numbers-matching.

In addition to the car, the winning bidder will get two binders that document its ownership history and restoration. There’s a letter from Ford that confirms this car’s provenance, as well as a collection of signatures from Lee Iacocca, Hal Sperlich, Don Frey, Gale Halderman, and other important figures from the Mustang’s past.

This summer, the car will appear in Ford v. Ferrari with Matt Damon and Christian Bale. So in theory, the winning bidder could drive this car to the theater to watch their new car on the big screen. That’s pretty cool.

Barrett-Jackson ushers in a new year of high-octane auction action during its 48th Annual Scottsdale Auction, featuring some of the world’s most coveted collector vehicles and authentic automobilia collectiblesJanuary 12-20, 2019, at WestWorld of Scottsdale. As in decades past, The World’s Greatest Collector Car Auctions will be the epicenter of Collector Car Auction Week and entertain thousands of automotive enthusiasts with interactive exhibits, entertainment, and activities. Check your local TV listings to see it live on MotorTrend Network and download the app for exclusive, live coverage.

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2020 Ford Mustang

MSRP $37,185 EcoBoost Premium Convertible