“It was my grandmother’s,” the fellow said as he unlocked the driver’s-side door. He was polite, but obviously in a hurry. “It was handed down to my mom, and now to me. I wish it were in better condition.”
“I think it’s perfect!” I called out as he got in.
The Mustang Grande was a higher-trim version of the “secretary special” coupe, the kind of car a young, single woman would drive then. Its $3,117 sticker price is equivalent to a shade under $18,000 today, putting it within that secretary’s reach.
You can’t touch a modern Mustang for less than $22,200, and given that its base V6 pushes 305 hp, it’s no secretary’s car anymore. Grandma’s Grande, if it packs the base six, runs at a much tamer 145 hp. The comparison is academic anyway. Modern secretaries prefer to be called administrative assistants, and prefer to drive cute little CUVs. Those CUVs are every bit as long as this Mustang, but a lot less of that length is in the snout.
The ’71 Mustang Grande has gotten the full CC treatment before; read it here. That this is the second to appear here is remarkable given that Ford made only 17,406 of them. 65,696 copies of the non-Grande coupe were made. But maybe those weren’t bought by eventual grandmothers who passed them down through the generations.