While his name may be more commonly linked with Chrysler, legendary auto exec Lee Iacocca was also the man who championed the now-even-more-legendary Ford Mustang through its development and birthing nearly a half century ago. To commemorate his unveiling of the original "pony car" at the 1964 New York World's Fair, Iacocca, designer Michael Leone and the renowned fabrication wizards at Gaffoglio Family Metalcrafters have created a dedicated 2009 1/2 Iacocca Silver 45th Anniversary Edition. Due for public debut in July, only 45 of these vehicles will be built. All will be exclusively marketed through Galpin Ford in Van Nuys, California, the automaker's largest U.S. dealership.
Beyond its unique Iacocca Silver paint, this stunning steed sports unique bodywork that complements a more aggressively styled front end with a fastback roof treatment set off by 20-inch Iacocca-design alloy wheels wrapped in Goodyear Eagle RSA 245/45 performance tires. The car's distinctive interior treatment is highlighted by Diamond Design leather seats and Iacocca-badged steering wheel and sill plates as well as a signed/numbered dash plaque. To maintain full warranty coverage, all functional upgrades are culled directly from Ford's rather bountiful Mustang parts bin. Engine choices include a naturally aspirated 320-horsepower/4.6-liter V8 and a 400-horse supercharged version, both matched with a five-speed manual transmission. Handling enhancements include a Ford Racing Handling Package with stiffer springs and shock absorbers along with an optional Ford Racing Brake Package. Pricing has yet to be announced, although more information can be found at www.ilegacy.com.
What lies ahead for the 84-year old Iacocca? While no full-time return to the industry is in the cards, the successful launch of Ford's all-new 2010 Mustang does open the door for future I-inspired variations on that theme as well. Although nothing has yet been finalized on that front, there's reason to believe a follow-up of about 1000 special-edition 2010 Mustangs equipped with automatic transmissions could possibly turn up in time for next summer.