This, this is it right here. A 1969 Boss 429 Ford Mustang finished in Candy Apple red and wearing period correct Goodyear Polyglas GT rubber. This is the
a microcosm of era, a history lesson on wheels. It's the definitive model from the company that launched the whole muscle car phenomenon five (and a half) years prior. Next weekend you have the chance to make it yours
What's being offered on the auction block next weekend by Auctions America at Barker Hanger in Santa Monica, California, is not a highly desirable collector car, but rather, an artifact. The Boss 429 Mustang was the pinnacle of the original Mustang, and after its '69/'70 production run, everything changed, both for the Mustang, and for the automotive industry as a whole.
The sub-par quality of subsequent Malaise Era cars has long helped to keep values of Muscle Era cars high, but the Boss 429 would stand out even if that wasn't the case. When going through the stat sheet on a completely restored vehicle like this one, it's easy to see why it's expected to fetch between $250,000 and $275,000.
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Under the hood of the lies an 8.1-liter monster of an engine. The last of the big block Ford V8s. With a swept capacity of up to 514 cubic inches, it was decided that a 429 cubic inch version would be best for NASCAR competition, and as the Boss 429 was a homologation special given the green light to allow Ford to race in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, the motor made its way onto the streets via this gorgeous fastback package.
Forged steel connecting rods, a forged steel crank, canted valves, hydraulic lifters, four bolt mains, forged rocker arms, and aluminum cylinder heads with modified Hemi-type combustion chambers more than justified the Boss 429 name. A single Holley four barrel carburetor mounted to an aluminum intake manifold kept the power plant fed with frosty air, and was considered to be one of the best flowing examples fitted to any muscle car of the era. All this added up to an engine that was vastly underrated at 375 horsepower in street trim. Recent dyno-testing of this example yielded far more impressive figures of 471 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque. Yeah, it's called the Boss for a reason.
Development of the Boss 429 wasn't without it's issues, though, the largest of which was the fact that the massive heart didn’t fit in the chest of the standard Mustang. In order to dial back the considerable amount of pressure already put on the in-house production team, Ford enlisted the help of Kar Kraft of Brighton Michigan. Engineless four-speed Cobra Jet Mustangs were sent from the factory directly to Kar Kraft to expand the engine bays through a number of modifications, which included cutting and relocating the shock towers, and moving front suspension mounts in order for the exhaust headers to have adequate clearance. As you can imagine, this kind of work didn't come cheap, and factored into the Boss 429 having a base sticker price of $4,087, the priciest non-Shelby Mustang that Ford had sold.
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This particular example was purchased from Nelson Ford in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, on August 25th 1969 for the sum of—wait for it—$4965.01, or $32,500.66 in today's currency. I know this because this particular Boss 429 comes with the original window sticker
, and a deluxe Marti report which offers up all sorts of interesting info, such as the actual date of production which happened to be June 25th, 1969.
So, 47 years after it rolled off the line (to the day!), three owners, approximately 35,000 miles, and one three-year professional chassis up restoration, KK 2029 could potentially sell for more than seven times its original price. If you're a numbers person, you have to be impressed by the figures associated with this machine. If you're not a numbers person, and your obsession with automobiles is purely driven by the heart, then I'm sure you've already fallen head over heels.
I'm happy to say that I'll be on hand to watch the bidding go down, and hopefully I'll be able to talk to owner into letting me get up close and personal with this pristine example of a legendary Pony car.
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Photo Credit: Auctions America