When the Mach I debuted with the redesigned Mustang Sportsroof in 1969, it pretty much became the de facto Mustang muscle car even though it came standard with a 351-2. Plenty of Mach Is came with the 428 Cobra Jet, but a smart racer would buy a Mustang coupe with the same motor.
Why the coupe? It weighed a couple hundred pounds less than the Mach I. If you could forego flash and style, you could then go a little faster. And if you really wanted a little style, you could still order the GT package on the coupe and get some nifty HD pieces that were shared with the Mach I. Or you could just go with the base coupe and promote the sleeper effect.
When spec’ing out a Cobra Jet, you had several choices. The base (Q-code) Cobra Jet was rated at 335 horsepower, but you could opt for the brand-new Shaker hood scoop (R-code) to ram air into the motor. It also was rated at 335 horses but clearly the Shaker added a few more, never mind the fact that the CJ was severely underrated on paper to begin with. Want to go even faster? Order 3.91 or 4.30 gears and you automatically got an external oil cooler and heavy-duty upgrades for the crank, rods, pistons, wrist pins, flywheel, and harmonic balancer. At some point in the model year, Ford started to package these items as the Drag Pack. All Drag Pack-equipped Cobra Jets are known as Super Cobra Jets.
So take a gander at this Silver Jade 1969 coupe on eBay. It’s rather plain with poverty caps and not much else other than the Shaker scoop. Built to go fast, right? WRONG-O! If you take a look at the Marti Report, you’ll see this coupe was built with the following options:
- F70x14 tires with raised white letters
- Air conditioning
- AM radio
- Rear seat speaker
- Competition suspension
- 3.00 gears
That’s right − this Mustang Cobra Jet coupe is equipped with AC and lazy gears! Whatever the motivations of the original California buyer, he/she ordered a very rare car as only 138 coupes had the motor with Shaker (plus an additional 105 built with the non-ram air Q-code motor). Compare that to the Sportsroof − 12,896 were built with both versions of the CJ. Most of those were Mach Is, so if you ever find a “regular” Sportsroof, it too is quite rare in its own right. Seller currently wants $64,000 for this councours-quality Mustang, but he’s open to offers.
Would you rather own this or a ritzy Mach I?